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Norton College doing better after critical Ofsted report
NORTON College has received a “very positive” interim report from Ofsted following a critical inspection last June.
The school was revisited last month by Jean Hewitt, an Ofsted inspector, after it was told there was a need for “significant improvement” in the progress of students in Years 7 to 11, and in post-16 courses.
Since the previous inspection, nine teachers have left the college and 13 teachers, of whom eight are newly-qualified, have joined the staff. The senior leadership team has also been restructured, including the appointment of a new deputy headteacher, Kavina Rothenburg.
Mrs Hewitt said that after considering all the evidence, she was of the opinion that the college was making satisfactory progress in addressing the issues for improvement and in raising the students’ achievements.
“Results for Year 11 were a significant improvement on the previous year,” she said.
“The proportion of students gaining five A* to C grades in English and mathematics was in line with national averages and students in Year 11 are on track to do even better.”
Mrs Hewitt said the improvements in achievements have been brought about because the college had focused sharply on improving teaching.
“Leaders have worked hard to make sure the new teachers understand what is expected of them and take swift and effective action on the few occasions when teaching is inadequate,” she said.
“Teachers are keen to improve their practice and they have responded swiftly to the expectations of the headteacher and senior leaders.”
Headteacher Phil Loftus said the college had set a target for its next full inspection in October 2013 of being graded “good” overall.
“Staff morale is high because they know that, with support, everyone connected to the college can deliver their best to the children,” he said.
“Norton is an exciting place to work because of the sense of positive progress we feel is being made by working collaboratively with students and through listening to feedback from parents.
“After spending a day with us, the inspector felt that the college was on track to achieve the target of “good” in our October inspection and was where it should be at this point, with some real strengths showing.
“We had already identified the next steps to be addressed, and this was confirmed as correct by the inspector.”