Poulton school still 'requires improvement' after latest Ofsted visit

A Poulton high school has kept its "requires improvement" rating from Ofsted after its latest visit from the education watchdog.

Friday, 20th December 2019, 5:00 pm

Baines School, on Highcross Road, Poulton, lost its previous "good" rating after an Ofsted inspection in May 2015, marking them down to "requires improvement."

In June 2017, another Ofsted inspection resulted in the same rating, and the school's most recent inspection has seen it hold on to the rating, concluding that it still needs to improve.

Ofsted found in the most recent inspection- on November 26 and 27- that there were remaining weaknesses with how well the curriculum was planned and delivered, resulting in some pupils not achieving as well as they should in subjects including English and maths.

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Baines school have received a "requires improvement" rating from Ofsted after their November inspection.

The education watchdog also reported that "year 7 pupils told us that they find aspects of the mathematics curriculum too easy because they unnecessarily repeat content that they covered in primary school."

However, the inspection report outlined the improved achievements in pupils from some subjects including "geography, science and art" and "this was also true for those pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND)."

Pupils said they felt safe, the report noted their behaviour was "mostly good", and "they were enthusiastic about the range of clubs and opportunities on offer."

There appeared to be no concerns over safeguarding, and Ofsted said: "The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

"Leaders ensure that all the necessary appointment checks are completed before new staff start work at the school.

"Staff receive regular safeguarding training, they understand the procedures that they must follow if they have concerns about a pupil."

Suggested improvements included more consistent implementation and design of the curriculum, the insistence of a high standard of presentation, (which some teachers were found not to be encouraging, as observed in year 9 modern foreign languages) and using assessment well to identify and address pupils’ misconceptions.

Some areas of the school were rated "good," including behaviour and attitudes, and personal development.

Alison Chapman, headteacher at Baines said: "Although our school was still judged to be "requires improvement", the report says many positive things about our school and acknowledges the changes we have made to improve standards.

"When I originally took up post I said that it would take three years to become a "Good" school, and as yet there has not been time to see the full impact from the very many positive changes we have made.

"We are pleased that the inspectors recognised the work we have done to develop positive attitudes and strong personal development provision and that these have been graded as 'good'.

"We are preparing our students as well-rounded young people for life in modern Britain and they are learning about how to keep themselves safe and are well-supported through our pastoral system.

"There have been many changes at Baines since I started in September 2017, the school is on the right path and the report acknowledges that we have ‘turned a corner’.

"Our results have significantly improved over the last two years and I expect to continue this upward trend.

"The timing of the inspection was just too soon to see the full impact across all areas of our school, and we will continue the drive to ensure that the students achieve their very best.

We are already working on the areas of improvement that Ofsted identified as we continue to improve our school.

"I truly believe we have a strong partnership where the school, students and parents/carers are working together to provide a broad, balanced and enriched education for all our students at Baines School.

"I want to thank parents and carers for supporting the changes we have made so far, as the report said, we have made some brave decisions to improve our school."