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Wednesday, 22 October 2014

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Improving Workington school makes progress towards coming out of special measures

Stainburn School and Science College in Workington is making reasonable progress after earlier being judged as inadequate, a government watchdog has said.

Ofsted inspectors visited the school last month for the second monitoring inspection since it was put into special measures in January.

They said it was making reasonable progress towards being removed from special measures.

A ban on the appointment of newly qualified teachers has also been lifted.

The inspectors said that pupils preparing for GCSE and A-level exams had been well supported and year 11 pupils had made more rapid progress in English.

Assessment has improved, helping pupils make better progress in all subjects, they added.

The report said: “Teachers have worked hard to improve teaching since the last inspection. Students are motivated by teachers’ enthusiasm and strong subject knowledge.”

It said the behaviour of pupils in lessons had improved and the school’s new leaders had achieved a lot in a short time.

David Dawes, interim headteacher, said: “We have a clear vision and direction for Stainburn to make it an outstanding school and have set ourselves challenging targets to ensure that we continue to make the necessary improvements.

“I am delighted that our hard work has been acknowledged by Ofsted and it is clear that there is a determination throughout the entire school to work even harder and to achieve even more. I would like to thank everyone for their continuing steadfastness and commitment to our progress.”

The school and Southfield Technology College, which was also placed in special measures at the same time, are both overseen by executive headteacher Lorrayne Hughes.

She said: “Everyone has worked exceptionally hard to make inroads into tackling the challenges facing Stainburn and I’m encouraged with the continued progress we are making and that this has been so clearly substantiated by Ofsted.

“The visit also identified specific areas where further attention is required and we will be working hard to address these.

“There is now a feeling of real optimism and confidence about our future. We must ensure that this optimism is maintained and translates into even more positive results for Stainburn.”

Inspectors also visited Southfield last month, and a report on that school is expected next week.

Cumbria County Council’s cabinet is due to vote next month on plans to close both schools at the end of the year and replace them with a new academy, which is due to open on January 1.

Have your say

In OfSTEDs report that put the Stainburn school in Special Measures it said that measures put in place by the school had not had enough time to see if they would work but there was improvement. Perhaps this good report has very little to do with "new" things put in place by the new Head, just that previous measures have had sufficient time to run and this is the outcome. Why, when the school was only a couple of months away from becoming an Academy did the inspections get brought forward?

Posted by Cath on 9 June 2014 at 20:07

Whether it was a political move or not when Stainburn School was judged as inadequate and put in Special Measures, the changes over recent months are clearly working. Behaviour is improving, staff morale is better and the two headteachers know what they are doing. They know how to motivate staff and pupils and have higher expectations. If these leaders were here last year I'm sure Stainburn would have been classed as a good school.

Posted by S.W on 8 June 2014 at 20:37

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