Ofsted finds pupil behaviour “improving” at Weston Favell Academy in Northampton

Rachel Steele, Principal of Weston Favell Academy with Glenys Stacey from Ofqual, visiting the school.
Rachel Steele, Principal of Weston Favell Academy with Glenys Stacey from Ofqual, visiting the school.

Student behaviour at a secondary school in Northampton has shown a “marked improvement” in the past six months, an Ofsted inspector has reported.

Weston Favell Academy was rated as ‘requires improvement’ after an Ofsted inspection last November and a monitoring inspection was carried out in March this year.

A report of the visit states that a new behaviour policy - launched in consultation with staff, students and parents - has already had a “significant impact” in reducing low-level disruption in lessons.

The report states: “Students say that the new policy is making a big difference in improving behaviour, although some older students reported that a few teachers do not always follow the agreed procedures.

“This causes resentment. Academy leaders know this and are taking action to eliminate the remaining inconsistencies. During the inspection, almost all students behaved very well, though they said that behaviour is not always so good.

The Ofsted report states that action to improve students’ attendance was also having a positive impact in reducing absence overall and in reducing the proportion of students who miss school regularly.

However, attendance continues to be “too low” in Key Stage 4 for 15 and 16-year-olds, particularly for girls.

The inspector also reported that actions taken to improve the quality of teaching are resulting in more teaching being consistently good then before and recognised that the academy is working hard to rapidly address past underachievement.

The inspector noted that there has been a marked improvement in student’s behaviour as a result of the new Positive Discipline model which is just one of the many steps that the academy has taken to improve pupils’ ability to learn.

Current data at the school, where only 33 per cent of students achieved five A* to C grades, including English and maths in 2014, shows that results are due to increase by 11 per cent this year.

Rachel Steele, principal, said: “I would like to thank pupils and staff who have work extremely hard since last November to address the areas for improvement identified by the recent section 5 inspection.

“It is clear from this monitoring visit that we are moving in the right direction and I remain confident that we have the drive and capacity to continue to move forward and make further progress.”