This ‘review of the year’ is the first in a sequence of updates from the Governing Body to give you a better idea of what we do, and to improve communication between parents and governors. In future these updates will be at the end of each term.
Since October 2017 we have been busy working with the Headteacher, Richard Hedge, and the Senior Leadership Team on improving pupil progress and recovering our OFSTED Good rating. Two particular aspects were highlighted in the OFSTED report: poor progress by disadvantaged (pupil premium) students, and inconsistency in teaching quality (overall good but not everywhere). A review of Pupil Premium teaching and management has been carried out by Richard Middlebrook, Headteacher of Alsager School and a National Leader in Education during the year. This review recommended several improvements which the Academy has completed and a recent visit gave us a positive report. Richard Middlebrook will continue to help us and has been appointed as the School External Advisor.
Inconsistency in teaching has been addressed throughout the year with the focus on the ‘triple challenge’ that might have become apparent from Show my Homework. The challenge is to encourage pupils to go further through feedback in lessons, homework tasks and personalized attention. We are hoping for improved GCSE results as a result of all this hard work by staff, although the journey to recovery of an OFSTED good grade is likely to take another year.
OFSTED criticised the Governors’ effectiveness, so we have commissioned a review of Governance which was completed in March. We are busy implementing the review recommendations which are improving our effectiveness in being a ‘critical friend’ to the Headteacher and the Senior Leadership Team. One of the review recommendations was to improve communication with parents, hence this update. We welcome any other suggestions you may have. Please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any ideas you would like to contribute.
In conclusion, it has been a busy year which has led to considerable improvements in the school. Although we live in a difficult financial climate the Academy finances are in good shape. School numbers are increasing but we are determined to maintain the Academy’s ethos of a small friendly school with personal attention and excellent education.
Alistair Sutcliffe – Chair of Governors