School rock­ets to good re­port

Rossendale Free Press - - News -

APRIMARY school has jumped two places to an Of­sted rat­ing of ‘good’ with in­spec­tors prais­ing the ‘en­thu­si­as­tic lead­er­ship’.

Three years ago, when Kathryn Bishop took over as head of St Mary’s RC Pri­mary in Tong Lane, Bacup, she vowed to take the school on a ‘ jour­ney to ex­cel­lence’.

Prior to her full-time ap­point­ment at the school, there had been six act­ing head­teach­ers. Just nine months into her new role, Of­sted rated St Mary’s as ‘in­ad­e­quate’.

How­ever, when HMI In­spec­tor Sue East­wood and Of­sted In­spec­tor Doreen Daven­port vis­ited re­cently they found a trans­formed school.

The re­port says: “Lead­ers and the gov­ern­ing body have turned the school around. It now pro­vides a good qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion.

“The head­teacher has made ef­fec­tive, bold de­ci­sions. She has ad­mirably led by ex­am­ple and played a cen­tral part in get­ting the school back on track to of­fer the very best ed­u­ca­tion to pupils.”

Mrs Bishop said: “In Septem­ber 2017 we started with a new teach­ing team – seven new teach­ers, two of whom are also as­sis­tant heads.

“Five weeks into the new aca­demic year, Of­sted had a mon­i­tor­ing in­spec­tion and they could see the im­prove­ments we had made and re­alised we needed longer be­fore a full in­spec­tion.”

Ex­actly 12 months later the school had a full in­spec­tion and re­ceived ‘good’ for all five key ar­eas.

Mrs Bishop said: “I am very proud of the chil­dren and the teach­ing as­sis­tants who have been here for the long­est pe­riod of time as they are the back­bone of our school.

“The chil­dren shone and showed the in­spec­tors their true per­son­al­i­ties and were very keen to help.

“We are continuing on our jour­ney to ex­cel­lence.”

In­spec­tors noted: “Com­pared to the time of the pre­vi­ous in­spec­tion, be­hav­iour has been trans­formed. Pupils con­duct them­selves well.

“Im­prove­ments in their self-con­fi­dence have re­sulted in them be­ing de­light­fully po­lite and well man­nered.”

They found chil­dren so ea­ger to learn that they did not want to leave their les­son and have a break.

Rat­ing the qual­ity of teach­ing, learn­ing and as­sess­ment as ‘good’, in­spec­tors noted the sig­nif­i­cant im­prove­ments, high ex­pec­ta­tions and con­sis­tent ap­proach to teach­ing English and maths across the school.

Last year a re­li­gious in­spec­tion also found the school to be ‘good’.

●● Pupils Bart, Olivia, Ser­ena and Ai­den spell out the re­sult with head­teacher Kathryn Bishop

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