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 Post subject: Failing school
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 7:37 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:48 am
Posts: 126
Location: Dartford, Kent
Sorry if this is in the wrong place, but I was just wondering if anyone else had gone through the experience of their child's primary school being deemed inadequate by Ofsted? We've always known it's not the best school around, but it's always had a nice atmosphere, and they managed to get my eldest into the local Grammar.

The Ofsted report did say that it was a friendly safe school, but unfortunately the level of teaching had been letting the pupils down, and they were not achieving their potential. Obviously this is disheartening to hear.

I'm hoping things will now improve - the head has 'gone' and we have a new 'Executive Head' and a deputy head who seems keen to see improvement. I have faith in my daughter's year teacher, but that may not be enough if they're already behind.

My daughter is bright, and we've always hoped she'll go to the Grammar as well, but now I'm not so sure.

I just wondered if anyone else had experienced this.


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 Post subject: Re: Failing school
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 7:56 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 1:05 pm
Posts: 4019
Location: Reading
My DD is on year 7 and last December her former Primary was inspected and got graded 3 (I think that is needs improvement).
They were slated for their English teaching, and I wasn't surprised. Praised for their maths teaching.
The previous head left in July and the new head seems to be making a big difference and I think if Ofsted had inspected in another year it would have been different.

The school still had 5/65 kids get into GSs.


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 Post subject: Re: Failing school
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 9:49 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:10 pm
Posts: 522
No personal experience of this but in our area there is a comp secondary school which was judged to be failing at an inspection a few years ago, they have a new head who (from all I've heard) is fantastic and their latest Ofsted was a good (which is one below outstanding) which is a huge improvement for them so I think that new leadership certainly has the potential to turn a school around fairly quickly.

This may sound a bit trite, but after my dd's experiences at her (ostensibly outstanding) primary school, my feelings are that if a school is lacking a bit academically that's not too bad. One can always improve that by either home tutoring or paying for a tutor. If a school falls down in keeping children safe and happy, ie if their pastoral care is lacking (which it is at dd's school) there is nothing you can do about that. Knowing what I know now, if I were choosing a primary school again - I'd be looking at their pastoral care and not focussing so much on their academic side. You can supplement the academic side if necessary but you can't make staff care about your child, no matter what you do.

That's just my opinion.


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 Post subject: Re: Failing school
PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 7:13 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
Posts: 8228
MJMoore wrote:
Sorry if this is in the wrong place, but I was just wondering if anyone else had gone through the experience of their child's primary school being deemed inadequate by Ofsted? We've always known it's not the best school around, but it's always had a nice atmosphere, and they managed to get my eldest into the local Grammar.

The Ofsted report did say that it was a friendly safe school, but unfortunately the level of teaching had been letting the pupils down, and they were not achieving their potential. Obviously this is disheartening to hear.

I'm hoping things will now improve - the head has 'gone' and we have a new 'Executive Head' and a deputy head who seems keen to see improvement. I have faith in my daughter's year teacher, but that may not be enough if they're already behind.

My daughter is bright, and we've always hoped she'll go to the Grammar as well, but now I'm not so sure.

I just wondered if anyone else had experienced this.


If you dig down to understand the weaknesses better you will begin to understand if they have had / are having / will have an effect on your child. Then you can work out what you need to do.

Look very carefully at the school results, the school intake, the report, the post ofsted action plan. Ask the senior leadership team for more info. If they are taking it seriously and striving to improve they will give you some information. If they huff and puff double the strength of your own action.


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 Post subject: Re: Failing school
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:55 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 9:28 am
Posts: 45
DS1's junior school was judged to be inadequate last year. DS1 had a terrible year (and teacher) in year 3 and the Ofsted report echoed my sentiments. The Ofsted report was issued nearly a year ago when DS1 was in year 4 and improvements have already been seen. Getting 'inadequate' forced the school to make improvements and the LA to give additional support, so I can only view it as a good thing, especially as DD2 and DS2 will be moving up in 18 months.

Some parents chose to move their kids as a new school opened nearby. My DS is happy where he is, he has some good friends and Ofsted were positive about the pastoral side of things. I know of an incident of bullying which the head teacher dealt with very effectively so I was happy for him to stay, as he wished. Who knew how the new school would perform - frying pans and fires spring to mind!

I am hoping that DS1 will make it to the local grammar and we are doing some 11+ work at home. Since we don't really know what we will be facing in September (Kent) I am focusing on Maths, reading, SPAG with some VR and NVR, probably in that order! The 11+ seems to be a taboo subject at the school gates and at parents meetings and it would seem that I am the only person even interested in it!

If you think your daughter has potential for the 11+, help and encourage her all the way. You can find out from the school what they are doing and supplement this at home with fun activities. While the school are in this phase of having Ofsted constantly on their backs, the staff will be incredibly accommodating! DS1 didn't make much progress in year 3 and had appeared to switch off but he has caught up now. What year is your DD?


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 Post subject: Re: Failing school
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:06 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:48 am
Posts: 126
Location: Dartford, Kent
My daughter is in year 5 - we're looking at practice papers etc when I can get her interested. I also seem the same, with no other parents seeming that interested in the 11+.

She had a bad year 4, as their teacher left, and they had loads of different supply teachers, but her year 5 teacher seems really good, so we're hoping for good progress. She's achieving 4b/4a at the moment, and her teacher is confident she can get her up to 5c by the end of the year, so I believe the potential is there.


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