School tackling special measures rating

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The headteacher of a primary school in Northampton has vowed to make sure the school bounces back quickly from going into special measures.

A report published following an Ofsted inspection of Kings Heath Primary School at the end of September has concluded the school was “inadequate” and failing to give pupils an acceptable level of education.

But headteacher Alison Hawkes said the school had recognised its weaknesses and plans were already in place to tackle these areas.

Mrs Hawkes said: “The Ofsted report was a great disappointment. We recognise we have improvements to make, in particular in certain areas.

“We are very confident that we have already started to work on improving standards at the school.

“We are confident we will be able to make the improvements required to come out of special measures as soon as possible.

“We are committed to the children having a first class education and we are determined to get better.”

The criticisms of the school in the Ofsted report included the fact that pupils did not make enough progress in reading and numeracy, especially in years one and two, and too many left school at the end of year six lacking the skills they required in order to succeed at secondary school.

The report stated: “Leaders, managers and governors have not dealt quickly enough with the school’s weaknesses. Where improvements have been made, these have not been sustained.

“Pupils’ achievement is inadequate. Behaviour requires improvement because a few pupils do not readily comply with teachers’ expectations. Not all teachers follow the school’s behaviour policy.”

Inspectors also found that staff turnover was higher than average with almost one third of the staff new in post at the time of the inspection.

The report did find the strengths of the school to be the leadership of the headteacher who “commands the respect of the pupils, parents and staff” and the fact the school provided an “attractive environment where pupils feel safe”.

Mrs Hawkes said she believed the school, which was rated “satisfactory” in an Ofsted inspection two years ago, may have suffered from the new tougher Ofsted inspection framework which was introduced this year.

The school will now be subject to three-monthly Ofsted monitoring inspections to check its progress.