School makes 'positive progress' following latest Ofsted inspection

PUBLISHED: 13:00 16 April 2018

The King Alfred School.

The King Alfred School.

Archant

A Somerset school continues to make good progress after being told it was 'inadequate' by an education watchdog last year.

The King Alfred School, in Highbridge, was placed into special measures by Ofsted following an inspection in April 2017.

The school, in Burnham Road, was visited for a two-day section eight inspection last month where inspectors praised the ‘determined action’ being taken by the schools leaders and managers to get it removed from special measures.

Ofsted said there are clear routines in place to enable lessons to start in a calm and peaceful manor and there is additional support for teachers who were previously deemed poor.

It says: “Where teachers fail to improve, leaders take decisive action.

“This has raised expectations for teachers’ classroom practice and the impact it has on pupils’ outcomes.

“Most middle leaders have responded positively to being held more rigorously to account for the quality of teaching within their departments.

“They have implemented a more robust and effective system of monitoring the quality of teaching.”

The inspectors have now said the school must raise teachers’ expectations of pupils and ensure they assign tasks which are matched ‘to their needs’.

The report praised the ‘very positive attitudes’ of pupils at the school and said they spoke positively about the school’s approach to good mental health.

It adds: “They state bullying is rare but have a trusted adult they would speak to if they had any concerns.

“Attendance has risen slightly across the school.

“However, the proportion of pupils who are persistently absent from school, and of those who receive a fixed-term exclusion, is too high.”

Since October, the Highbridge school has been supported by The Priory Learning Trust.

Executive principal of the trust, Neville Coles, and headteacher Denise Hurr said are happy with the school’s progress.

They said: “We are very pleased Ofsted found improvement but we are not complacent.

“We look forward to welcoming the Ofsted team back towards the end of the summer term to see further improvements.

“King Alfred has the potential to become one of the very best schools in the region and we will be relentless towards achieving that aim.”

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