Head’s plan for ‘failing’ Sheffield academy

Sheffield Springs Academy head Russell Heritage.
Sheffield Springs Academy head Russell Heritage.
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A HEADTEACHER at a troubled Sheffield school has written to parents to set out his mission to improve standards in light of a damning Ofsted report.

Education watchdogs have placed Sheffield Springs Academy in Arbourthorne in ‘special measures’, meaning it is failing to give pupils an acceptable standard of education. The quality of teaching, pupils’ achievement, behaviour and safety of pupils, and leadership and management were all rated ‘inadequate’.

Disruptive behaviour, low levels of attendance, attainment and exam results were highlighted as causes for concern.

Newly-appointed head Russell Heritage described the results as ‘disappointing but not unexpected’, as the team from Oftsed visited the school just two weeks after he and 25 other members of teaching staff began work at the United Learning Trust school.

In a letter to parents, Mr Heritage said: “The leadership team, staff, governing body and United Learning Trust are all fully committed to Sheffield Springs and dedicating our combined resources to turning around the previous vulnerabilities of the school.

“And, while the report itself pulls no punches, we are genuinely very confident actions already underway will secure sustainable improvements in the coming months and years.”

It is the second time in four years the Hurlfield Road school has been labelled inadequate.

Inspectors placed the same status on the school in September 2009 but its overall effectiveness was brought to ‘satisfactory’ the following year.

Bosses do not want the latest report to be perceived as a step back.

Mr Heritage said: “Many of us at Sheffield Springs are new to the school but we are all united in working together to continue to develop a learning environment where all of our students is able to thrive.”

Does your son or daughter attend Springs Academy? What do you think about the standards there? Email: news@thestar.co.uk.