December 5 2013 Latest news:
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
A Lowestoft high school has been told by inspectors that it is on course to achieve its best ever GCSE results.
News that Benjamin Britten High School’s year-11 students are set to gain the school’s highest percentage rate of A*-C passes in its history emerged in its latest Osfted report.
Although the inspection rated the school as requires improvement under new Ofsted guidelines, the report says Benjamin Britten High School is seeing an improvement in its students’ progress and the number of students excluded for bad behaviour has fallen dramatically.
The inspection follows an Ofsted visit in June 2011 which rated the school as satisfactory – the same rating as requires improvement under new stricter Ofsted guidelines.
The latest report said achievement of students, quality of teaching and leadership and management requires improvement. The behaviour and safety of students was rated one higher as good.
It said: “The current year 11 students are on course to attain the highest proportion of A*-C passes in GCSE examinations including English and mathematics, that the school has ever achieved, bringing standards broadly into line with the national average.”
The report added: “Students’ progress is improving, with a steady rise in the proportion making the expected progress.
“Behaviour is good. The number of students who are excluded for unacceptable behaviour has fallen dramatically.
“The headteacher and senior leaders are working effectively to improve the quality of teaching and to increase the rate of students’ progress.”
The report also notes how the improvement in students’ achievement was set against the background of new students joining the school during the school organisation review which saw the abolition of middle schools in the Lowestoft area.
Headteacher Andrew Hine said: “This marks a point on the school’s journey to a good rating and beyond.
“I’m especially pleased as this inspection was conducted under a framework introduced on September 1, which sees inspectors using new, tougher criteria than before and recognises how these improvements have been made despite the pressures of school reorganisation.
“While the overall grading given to the school was one of requires improvement this is limited by the fact that the school’s results, while rising steadily, have not yet exceeded the national average and as such the judgment cannot be that of good.
“Inspectors did, however, recognise that teaching continues to improve saying that ‘a higher number of good or outstanding teaching is evident than in the past’ and that ‘teachers and teaching assistants make a valuable contribution to students’ personal development’.”
The Ofsted report said the school did not gain a good rating as too few students are exceeding expectations for their age, some older students were too reliant on adult support and some teachers do not focus on students’ communication skills and do not let them know how well they are doing.
It also said governors were not sufficiently aware of how effectively the school is working or how well different groups of students are making progress.