Good, but still room for im­prove­ment

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Front Page - by Nick Lil­li­tos nlil­li­tos@thek­m­group.co.uk

A JU­NIOR school in Ash­ford has been praised by ed­u­ca­tion in­spec­tors, but also urged to raise at­tain­ment in math­e­mat­ics and writ­ing even fur­ther.

Their ver­dict on Willes­bor­ough Ju­nior School in High­field Road, was de­scribed as “good” – pre­vi­ously it was judged “sat­is­fac­tory” – with stan­dards high in English, par­tic­u­larly read­ing and in sci­ence, and above av­er­age in math­e­mat­ics.

At­tain­ment in math­e­mat- ics and writ­ing was rapidly im­prov­ing year on year, said the Of­sted re­port, due to the use of spe­cial­ist pro­grammes.

The re­port said: “How­ever, th­ese pro­grammes have not brought about the same rate of im­prove­ment when com­pared to read­ing and sci­ence.

“Stan­dards in many other sub­jects, in­clud­ing in­for­ma­tion and com­mu­ni­ca­tion tech­nol­ogy, and mu­sic are above na­tional ex­pec­ta­tions.”

It urged teach­ers to raise at­tain­ment in math­e­mat­ics and writ­ing by “en­sur­ing that all pupils, par­tic­u­larly higher at­tain­ing pupils, are pro­vided with tasks that are suf­fi­ciently chal­leng­ing and more closely match­ing to their lev­els of abil­ity”.

In a sep­a­rate let­ter ad­dressed to pupils, lead in­spec­tor Wendy Forbes wrote: “I am de­lighted to tell you that you go to a good school. There are many things that are su­per about your school.”

In­spec­tors also rec­om­mended pupils’ un­der­stand­ing be im­proved in the “di­verse na­ture of Bri­tish mul­ti­cul­tural so­ci­ety” by mak­ing links with schools and com­mu­ni­ties that re­flect this.

Dur­ing their visit to the 469strong mixed pupil school, Of­sted in­spec­tors ob­served 16 lessons, held meet­ings with gov­er­nors, staff and groups of pupils; the lat­ter who told them bul­ly­ing was a rare oc­cur­rence.

“At the heart of this good school is the drive and determination of the head teacher, well sup­ported by staff and gov­er­nors, to pro­vide the best pos­si­ble ed­u­ca­tion for its pupils. This it does very ef­fec­tively,” says the re­port.

“The school is brim­ming with happy, hard-work­ing, well-mo­ti­vated pupils striv­ing to achieve the best they can.”

Com­ment­ing on the re­port, head teacher Michael Smith said: “This ex­cel­lent re­port is a re­flec­tion of the hard work and con­sis­tent ef­fort of every­one in the school.

“We are very proud of this achieve­ment as the school has im­proved from “sat­is­fac­tory” to “good” in spite of the tougher in­spec­tion regime in­tro­duced by Of­sted in Septem­ber 2009.” Head teacher Mike Smith – “This ex­cel­lent re­port is a re­flec­tion of the hard work and con­sis­tent ef­fort of every­one at the school”

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