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'We have an exciting future' - School judged 'good' after requiring improvement

PUBLISHED: 09:47 01 February 2020 | UPDATED: 09:47 01 February 2020

Thomas Bullock CE Primary Academy in Shipdham has been rated as 'good' by Ofsted. Picture: DNEAT

Thomas Bullock CE Primary Academy in Shipdham has been rated as 'good' by Ofsted. Picture: DNEAT

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An academy that was told it must improve has now been rated as 'good' by the education watchdog.

Shannon O’Sullivan is set to become the new headteacher at Thomas Bullock CE Primary Academy in Shipdham. Picture: DNEATShannon O’Sullivan is set to become the new headteacher at Thomas Bullock CE Primary Academy in Shipdham. Picture: DNEAT

Thomas Bullock Church of England Primary Academy, in Shipdham, was marked as 'requires improvement' following an Ofsted inspection in September 2017.

At the time, inspectors found the proportion of pupils who reached the combined standard in reading, writing and mathematics by the end of Year 6 was below the national average.

They also noted "imprecise" feedback from adults in helping pupils improve, and a need to vary learning content to cater for different abilities.

Although the school was seen to be improving, pupil achievement was varied and could not be rated as 'good' overall.

But having revisited the Pound Green academy - part of the Diocese of Norwich Education Academies Trust (DNEAT) - in January of this year, inspectors described it as a "friendly and welcoming" place.

They highlighted a "culture where pupils want to do their best in all respects", and said teaching and pupils' work were at a good standard across the board.

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The report did, however, say parents would like more information about what their children are learning - an issue the school is already addressing.

In response to the report, interim headteacher Chris Read said: "We are extremely pleased that the positive attitudes and hard work of staff have been recognised by this judgement.

"The children, families, staff, governors and DNEAT have contributed significantly to the improvement made within the school through their hard work and continued support."

Oliver Burwood, chief executive of DNEAT, added: "The report highlights how being part of a successful trust can ensure the strong leadership needed to run a successful academy.

"We are proud of how everyone at the school has responded to the new leadership to deliver an engaging, safe and enjoyable education for the children of Shipdham."

In addition to its Ofsted report, the school has also been boosted by the appointment of a permanent headteacher.

Shannon O'Sullivan will take up her post in April and is looking forward to the challenge.

"I am absolutely delighted to have been appointed as headteacher at Thomas Bullock, which has an extremely exciting future following the fantastic news of a 'good' Ofsted."

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