Northampton academy celebrates moving from 'requires improvement' to 'good' in Ofsted rating

Malcolm Arnold Academy
Malcolm Arnold Academy

Students and staff at a Northampton academy are celebrating after improving their Ofsted rating to 'good' after an inspection this month.

Malcolm Arnold Academy in Trinity Avenue was labelled 'requires improvement' in May 2016 but has been praised by Ofsted for its "strong culture of openness, honesty and respect" and for the significant amelioration made in two years.

Chris Steed, executive principal at the school. said he was pleased to see positive feedback from parents and carers.

"I am incredibly proud of our school community," he said.

"Ofsted’s many positive comments are testament to the aspiration and commitment of our students, their parents and guardians and our colleagues and governors.

“Not only did Ofsted comment on how our students are confident, articulate and self-assured, but it has also been extremely pleasing to see such positive feedback from our parents and carers about how Malcolm Arnold Academy is making a difference to their child’s life.”

Ofsted inspectors noted that pupils were proud of their school, enjoyed coming to school and arrived well prepared and eager to learn.

They know that challenging targets set by teachers for them to aim high will help them to do well in lessons and they appreciate the lengths staff go to support them, and know that teachers are ambitious for them and want them to do well.

Students are making faster than average progress in a number of subjects.

"The proportion of pupils moving on to further education, employment and training after school is high," the report states.

"This is because they are well prepared for the next stages in their lives and receive good-quality careers advice and guidance."

Teachers have good subject knowledge and their enthusiasm for their subject inspires pupils. Teachers’ thorough knowledge of GCSE examination specifications is giving pupils the best chance of succeeding when they sit their examinations.

The positive relationships within the school create an inclusive and welcoming environment enabling pupils to thrive.

A representative parental comment noted that: "Since attending this school my child has grown in confidence and ability and her talents have been nurtured and celebrated."

Inspectors described Mr Steed as a "highly effective leader, who has built a senior leadership team who share his ambition for the school".

The academy's leaders have created a strong culture where morale is high and great emphasis is placed on the well-being of pupils and staff.

The curriculum is constantly reviewed to ensure it is meeting the needs and abilities of all pupils to make good progress.

Nicola Koncarevic, head of school at Malcolm Arnold Academy, said: “We are all very excited about the future and will continue making great strides towards the goal of becoming an Outstanding school at our next inspection.”