School praised for 'effective action' to address serious failings

Bishop’s Church of England Primary Academy interim headteacher Chris Read.

Bishop’s Church of England Primary Academy interim headteacher Chris Read. - Credit: DNEAT

Ofsted has said a Norfolk school told to improve has been taking “effective action” to address failings in pupils' education.

The Bishop’s Church of England Primary Academy in Thetford has received its third positive Ofsted report in the past 12 months following a full inspection in 2019 that rated its provision “inadequate”.

Inspectors had found that “failings in the quality of education” meant that too many pupils were not achieving what is expected for their age.

Following the latest remote monitoring inspection, carried out in early May, an Ofsted report said progress had been made but that staffing changes and disruption caused by the pandemic have “slowed plans to implement a curriculum that fully engages all pupils and enables them to achieve well”.

The Bishop’s Church of England Primary Academy in Thetford

The Bishop’s Church of England Primary Academy in Thetford. - Credit: DNEAT

Lead inspector John Mitcheson said: “Senior leaders have rightly prioritised improving the curriculum. 

“Teachers made good use of time during lockdown to revise curriculum planning in English and mathematics. Leaders of foundation subjects also worked together to revise plans
for topic-based learning.”

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The school, part of Diocese of Norwich Education and Academies Trust (DNEAT), has been implementing new resources to teach pupils how to learn to read in an enjoyable way, the report added.

New assessment procedures are also helping to identify which pupils have gaps in their learning and to inform what needs to be taught again.

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In response to the latest report, Chris Read, interim headteacher, said: “We recognise that we need to test out the changes we have made and that there are further actions to take.

"We want the very best for our children and we are confident that the strengths this report identifies, and the support from DNEAT, mean that we are well placed to achieve our goals.”

Oliver Burwood, CEO of Diocese of Norwich Education and Academy Trust.

Oliver Burwood, CEO of Diocese of Norwich Education and Academy Trust. - Credit: DNEAT

Oliver Burwood, chief executive of DNEAT, said: “The recent Ofsted report outlined that the headteacher and other leaders have led improvements and added stability to the school. 

“The report is very positive, highlighting a clear understanding of the progress being made in resolving the issues raised in the previous inspection, and what needs improving further.”

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