Differences celebrated at Northampton school given 'good' by inspectors in first report

Tim Marston, headteacher at Northampton International Academy.
Tim Marston, headteacher at Northampton International Academy.

Ofsted has praised a newly opened Northampton school for its inclusivity and good pupil behaviour after a two-day inspection.

The education watchdog has rated Northampton International Academy 'good' overall in a complimentary first report, which gave a nod to a 'convivial and upbeat' atmosphere.

Takeaway findings from the report include 'strong and positive' relationships between teachers and pupils, and skilled teachers who are passionate about the schools 'international ethos'.

Inspectors were admiring of the school's push to make students feel included. In fact, those who speak English as an additional language were found to be making better progress than other pupils in school.

Lead inspector Rachel Tordoff said: "Pupils demonstrate a strong understanding of equality and diversity.

"They are adamant that no one is ill-treated because of how they look or their sexual orientation.

"For example, a recent event to raise awareness of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues was widely supported."

Inspectors found that, in early years classes, teachers use a 'rigorous system of assessment' to evaluate children’s progress and give parents and children 'pertinent feedback' to help pupils make more progress.

Headteacher Tim Marston said: "We are hugely proud of all of our pupils, parents, staff and the wider community for contributing to what is a massive undertaking.

"Our academy trust, East Midlands Academy Trust (EMAT), have provided fantastic support to us as a new and rapidly growing school and we look forward to making a huge impact as we continue to develop."

But more work should be done to decrease the numbers of pupils - particularly boys - who have been temporarily excluded more than once this year.

"Although there has been an increase in the proportion of pupils who have been permanently excluded this year, leaders have successfully supported other pupils who are at risk of being excluded to improve their behaviour," Rachel Tordoff added.

"The proportion of pupils who have been temporarily excluded has decreased and is below the national average.

"However, the proportion of pupils who have received more than one exclusion has risen this year. Many of these pupils are boys."