Two Sheffield schools fail to achieve 'good' Ofsted ratings for a decade

TwoSheffield schools have failed to achieve a 'good' inspection rating for 10 years, it has emerged.

Friday, 15th December 2017, 10:31 am
Updated Friday, 15th December 2017, 10:35 am
Three Sheffield Schools have not achieved a good Ofsted rating for 10 years

Sheffield Springs Academy in Arbourthorne and Westfield School in Wesfield are among 130 identified by Ofsted as not having achieved a 'good' rating in inspections for the last decade despite receiving 'considerable attention and investment'.

Others facing similar challenges have been able to achieve success, showing improvement is possible, it states.

Amanda Spielman, the education watchdog's chief inspector, called for support to be directed at consistently under-performing schools.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

"Fixating on all the things holding schools back can distract us all from working on the things that take them forward," she added.

"Schools with all ranges of children can and do succeed.

"Where this is difficult, what is needed is greater support and leadership from within the system.

"That means making sure the system has the capacity to provide this support."

Overall, education and care provided to young people is 'better than ever', with around 90 per cent of primary schools and 79 per cent of secondaries rated good or outstanding, the report said.

A spokeswoman for Sheffield Springs Academy said: "Whilst the academy has not achieved a good rating, it is wholly untrue to say that the measures introduced to raise standards are not making a difference.

"This year we saw a 10 percentage point improvement at GCSE compared to last year and we were the fourth highest performing school in Sheffield at Progress 8, achieving particularly strong scores in the core subjects of English, maths and science.

"When Ofsted inspectors last visited, they highlighted a number of strengths and were confident about the academy’s capacity for further improvement. We know that there are still areas for improvement but, with the support of parents and our local community, we are working hard to accelerate progress in all areas of the academy.”

Roisin Paul, Executive Head of Chorus Education Trust, which runs Westfield School, said: "Whilst we cannot comment on what has happened previously in the school I can say that, since Chorus Education Trust took over the management of the school in March we have worked tirelessly to ensure that Westfield students have an extremely bright future.

“We have strengthened Westfield’s links with our founding school, Silverdale, with staff working together across the two schools. This term 36 Westfield Year 11 students have already said they want to join Silverdale Sixth Form - the highest performing state sixth form in Sheffield based on last year’s results."

Westfield School headteacher, Joe Birkbeck, added: "Since I joined the school at the start of this academic year I have dedicated myself to raising the aspirations of our students, and supporting them by improving our teaching and learning.

"I have been heartened by the positive, ambitious attitude of staff, students and parents. We are all working together to ensure that Westfield’s next Ofsted judgement is at the very least ‘Good’ and hopefully ‘Outstanding’."

The other South Yorkshire schools on the list are The Dearne Advanced Learning Centre and West Melton Junior and Infant School, both in Rotherham; Stirling Primary School, Armthorpe Academy, The Blyth Academy and Balby Carr Community Academy, all in Doncaster.