OFSTED bosses have re-visited the beleaguered primary school in Tilbury and found that there is still much to do.
The school has been beset by controversy over the last few years with serious questions being asked regarding its budgetary arrangements, poor standards in teaching and the subsequent resignation of the head.
Ofsted came in on October 9th and reported the following.
The quality of leadership and management at the school
The local authority has provided effective support for the school.
You have quickly made changes to the way that teachers plan and deliver lessons, and the way they mark pupils’ work. This has improved teaching in some classes but there is still a great deal more to do. Too much teaching is inadequate and some teachers are not responding quickly enough to your higher expectations. For example, teachers’ marking of pupils’ work is patchy across the school. Pupils get clear guidance about to how to improve their work in some classes, while in others the marking is brief and infrequent.
You have made the roles of senior leader clearer and they have a better understanding about how they need to support you in driving improvements in the school. The section 5 inspection was critical of teaching and achievement in Key Stage 1. You have changed the way that this part of the school is organised and a senior leader is now taking more responsibility for improving the quality of teaching. A local authority adviser is supporting this member of the leadership team.
The school’s approach to managing behaviour and supporting pupils has changed. A ‘reflection room’ is now available for pupils to work in when they are finding working in a full class difficult to cope with. New staff have been appointed to support these pupils, and the senior leader for this area has a very clear understanding of what he needs to do. The management of support for pupils with special educational needs is weak. Pupils’ individual needs are not given sufficient priority when staff are allocated to individual pupils. Strategies to monitor and evaluate the impact of this support are inadequate. All senior leaders have not yet grasped the nettle and supported you by holding all staff to account for the quality of teaching and learning, and this now needs to be a priority.
The governing body is clear about what it needs to do. Recent recruitment of experienced governors has increased its capacity to support and challenge the school. Minutes of recent meetings show that governors are asking questions which hold school leaders to account for their actions. An external review of their work has begun, and will be complete by December.
The local authority’s involvement in the school has helped to make improvements since the inspection. The statement of action is detailed, and the success criteria spell out very clearly how the school needs to improve. Some timescales are too ambitious, and have already led to slippage, while others are not specific enough to allow for accountability. Its timescales need to be reviewed regularly.