Hethersett High School to become an academy by November

Ormiston Victory Academy head, Rachel de Souza. Picture: Denise Bradley

Ormiston Victory Academy head, Rachel de Souza. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2012

A failing south Norfolk high school is set to become an academy in November.

Hethersett High was branded 'inadequate' in June, with Ofsted inspectors noting a 'dramatic slump' in pupils' progress and attainment last year.

Governors voted to become part of the Inspiration Trust cluster of schools to help take it forward as an academy.

It is anticipated the academy will open in November.

The chief executive of the Inspiration Trust, Rachel de Souza, who has led two schools from special measures to outstanding, said: 'I want to reassure parents that the trust is going to put 100pc in. They need to get the school they deserve.

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'It's a travesty that the school ended up in special measures. We have got fabulous students, committed parents and strong teachers. I would say within two years it will be outstanding.'

Last month, headteacher Kerry Jordan went on long-term sick leave, and temporary leader John Catton was appointed.

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It is expected Mr Catton will stay at the school until November.

Mrs de Souza said: 'We need to invest in teaching and learning so lessons are current and exciting. Parents have already started talking to me about how we are going to get homework sorted.

'My belief is that we have got great teachers in Norfolk and we need to sort leadership out so teachers can develop.

'I have every confidence in John during the transition period. We will be able to stand shoulder to shoulder and make the changes that need to be made.'

A letter from Michael Gove, secretary of state for education, confirmed that the academy process will be fast-tracked.

'When I set up my first academy I had a year,' Mrs de Souza added.

'When I set up Victory, I only had a term. Things move quickly and we need to be thinking about how quickly we can get the school out of special measures.'

The next parents' forum meeting will be held on Tuesday at 7pm and Mrs de Souza will attend.

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