Sheffield school praised in first Ofsted

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AN ACADEMY school has been praised in its first regular Ofsted report for ‘establishing a secure trend of improvement’.

Parkwood Academy in Shirecliffe, which opened in 2009 and moved into a new, purpose-built, site in April, scored a ‘satisfactory’ mark for achievement, teaching and pupil behaviour.

But highly effective leadership and management was rated ‘good’ by inspectors who felt the school was ‘well placed to improve further’.

Principal Mike Westerdale said: “We are delighted inspectors praised the progress being made and recognised many improvements that have taken place in the last two years.

“We are confident our ‘good leadership’ will enable us to improve at an increasing pace.

“We have a clear and determined vision for the academy’s future and are confident we will achieve our ambitious targets on our journey to ‘outstanding’.”

An initial monitoring inspection to the specialist academy was made in 2011.

The latest report said students were making ‘rapid progress’ and attainment was rising from low entry levels.

Last year the E-ACT academy scored its best GCSE results.

Inspectors found a developing ‘culture of achievement’ and improving teaching. But more work was needed in lessons to raise achievement.

Mr Westerdale added: “While the report identified a number of clear strengths there is further work needed in order to reach our target of outstanding.

“We are clear that we must now act on key areas identified by Ofsted to raise achievement even further and accelerate success.”

Students were ‘enthusiastic’ about the new £20m school site and said it already had a ‘positive impact’, the report added.

Sir Bruce Liddington, director general of E-ACT, congratulated the academy and said he had ‘no doubt’ it would continue to improve.