Record haul of GCSEs predicted at Northampton school, say Ofsted inspectors as rating improves to ‘good’

A classroom scene at Kingsthorpe College, Boughton Green Road
A classroom scene at Kingsthorpe College, Boughton Green Road

​Inspectors have tipped pupils at a Northampton secondary school to hit the national ta​​rget for GCSEs for the first time.

Ofsted visited Kingsthorpe College in Boughton Green Road in May and as a result upgraded the school from ‘requires improvement’ in 2014 to ‘good’.

The gap between the most disadvantaged pupils and the average is narrowing rapidly.

Ofsted report

It said that advances in teaching practice, including more exciting lessons and quickly spotting pupils who have fallen behind​,​ have helped improve grade predictions and ​they ​forecast a record breaking haul of grades after this summers’ GCSE exams.

The report said: “In 2014 the attainment of students achieving five A* to C grades (including English and mathematics) was below average. This result, however, was the best ever for the college.

“As a result of the rapid progress made this year, reliable predictions for 2015 indicate that the percentage of students achieving five A* to Cs will be above average.”

The inspectors noted that ​their predictions follow another sign of significant progress, the fact that the gaps between the grades of the most disadvantaged students and average students are “narrowing rapidly”.

The school was awarded ‘good’ in leadership, quality of teaching, achievement of pupils and sixth form. The latter also attracted praise for the statistic of one in four sixth formers having an offer from a university in the prestigious Russell Group.

Behaviour was also rated ‘good’, although there was criticism that attendance was below the national average and the number of students persistently absent was termed “too high”.

Principal Debbie Morrison said: “We are all very proud about the Ofsted outcome for our students, our staff and our community. This community has undervalued itself for too long but together we have now challenged that and our young people can be proud that they are receiving a good education. This is only the first step, albeit it a big one, and we will continue to give our community the best of what we can offer.”