Recent Ofsted Inspection
As you are aware we were inspected in November by a team from Ofsted (the Office for Standards in Education). A copy of the full report was made available on their website (www.ofsted.gov.uk) on Monday 4th February 2013 and we have also uploaded a copy onto our website. Paper copies are available in school for anyone who may wish to have one.
The Inspection was under the new regime, which was introduced in September 2012. It is generally acknowledged that the standards that need to be achieved and evidenced under this new regime are more testing than under the previous Ofsted inspections. In a similar vein, only a relatively small population of schools have been examined under this new regime, and so comparisons are even more difficult to draw out.
The school has been judged as requiring ‘special measures’ and we are now being supported by Northamptonshire County Council to implement a development plan to enable rapid improvement.
One of the key reasons for the judgement relates to the GCSE results in 2012 being lower than expected, following a number of consecutive years of significant improvement. The results were impacted upon – as with many schools across the country – by changes to English grade boundaries. However, the school fully accepts that this was not the sole contributory factor to the dip in results.
Ofsted highlighted the need for the school to:
· Improve the quality of teaching
· Raise achievement in the key subjects of English and Mathematics
· Develop effective strategies to improve attendance and reduce exclusions and
· Improve the effectiveness of leadership, management and governance.
Ofsted felt that positive changes have already been made at the school, noting “The new headteacher has moved swiftly to introduce a robust system to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses in the school and to implement changes to address the key areas for improvement”.
They also noted that students behave well in class and around the school and that the new building provides an exceptional environment for learning. Staff at the school have welcomed the improvements already being made and are determined to rise to the challenge by ensuring Kingswood improves in the key areas for development. Performing arts are a notable feature of the school and results in these subjects and indeed all vocational subjects are very high. Students say they feel behaviour is good and that the school is a safe place for learning. Students feel that the school deals with any bullying effectively. The majority of parents and carers are supportive of the school, students get on well together and with teachers and other adults in the school.
Quite clearly, it is vital that the school responds to the report in a thoroughly professional manner and takes action to address the key issues as a matter of priority. It should however be noted, that even before the inspection, we had already identified these issues - something clearly acknowledged by the inspection team - and started to implement appropriate strategies to address them.
As part of our ongoing drive to improve standards, the school has prepared a detailed annual development plan which has been carefully constructed to address areas of weakness. We will make a summary of this plan available to parents on our website so that you are fully informed about the direction we are taking and the plans we have to further raise standards by improving aspects of relative weakness. Additionally we are inviting parents to attend a meeting to be held at the school on Tuesday 19th February 2013 at 6.00 p.m. in order to discuss matters raised in the report and the school’s response.
If you wish to discuss any aspect of the Ofsted report or the school’s response to it, please contact Scott Hudson, Headteacher, at the School.
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