School brands Ofsted judgment "unfair"

First published in News

A primary school told by school inspectors it required improvement is fighting against the judgment.

Ofsted found Broadwas CE Primary School required improvement in all areas except the behaviour and safety of pupils.

However, the school said its 2013 results put it in the top eight primary schools in Worcestershire.

A formal complaint has been lodged with Ofsted, which had previously judged the school to be outstanding.

Headteacher, Mark Allen, said, ‘We are extremely disappointed with the judgment made by the inspector and feel the report presents a very unfair reflection of our school.

"We are, of course, aware there are areas for development in our school and we work hard to continually improve our practice.

"However, there are aspects of the inspection process and the report that are inaccurate and in conflict with Ofsted’s own guidance documents for its inspectors."

The report by inspector Sandra Hayes, after an inspection in February, said the children's achievement required improvement.

She felt higher ability pupils did not progress enough in maths and too few middle ability pupils did well enough in writing.

The Early Years Foundation stage was praised but the inspector said progress in Year 2 in 2013 was then too slow leading to below average attainment.

Disabled pupils and those with special educational needs made good progress and all pupils did well in reading.

The report said teaching required improvement in years 1 to 6 because teachers did not have high enough expectations of pupils especially in maths and writing.

The inspector felt the headteacher's judgment on the quality of teaching was too generous and based too much on lesson observation rather than the children's work.

She also said some teachers were given pay rises not linked to pupil achievements.

The children's behaviour was good and the school successfully promoted caring values.

Overall rates of attendance were above average.

The report said leadership required improvement because leaders, including governors, were not ambitious enough for pupils’ attainment.

It said headteacher Mark Allen had too many responsibilities leaving him unable to keep a close enough check on the quality of teaching in all classes.

However, staff were "overwhelmingly positive" about his leadership and parents valued the school.

In response, the school said its SATs results were above the county and national average.

Last year, all 15 Year 6 pupils achieved level 4 in reading and 93 per cent reached level 4 in writing and maths.

All children made at least two levels of progress between Key Stage 1 and 2 - a key government measure.

Caroline Smith, chairman of the governing body, said: "Governors feel that no account has been taken of the school’s many strengths and excellent achievements."

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