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Thursday, 13 February 2014 00:00

The misery of Warren Wood Community Primary School (yet another Medway OFSTED failure)

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The following table shows the miserable performance of Warren Wood Primary School at OFSTED Inspections over the past ten years. It includes FOUR Ofsted failures (three Special Measures, one Requires Improvement), three Inadequate Progress Inspections following Special Measures, just one Satisfactory OFSTED, one Good progress from Special Measures and two Satisfactory Progress Inspections following Special Measures or Requires Improvement. 

Warren Wood Primary School
History of OFSTED Inspections
Category Date
Special Measures June 2004
Good progress since SM Nov 2005
Satisfactory Mar 2006
Requires Improvement  May 2008
Satisfactory progress since RI Jan 2009
Special Measures Jul 2009
Inadequate progress since SM Jan 2010
Inadequate progress since SM May 2010
Inadequate progress since SM
Satisfactory progress since
previous Monitoring Inspection
Sep 2010
Satisfactory  progress since SM
Mar 2011
Satisfactory
Jun 2011
Special Measures 
Dec 2013

 That is a decade of an appalling standard of education offered to pupils of Warren Wood Primary School. However, Medway Council continued to maintain in its most recent responses to my reporting of the disgraceful performance of the Council that: it has nothing to apologise for; it is doing alright (citing the exam performance of the  secondary academies); that its School Improvement Department is excellent, and that any problem is down to the academies (which are mainly secondary schools, so its not!). OFSTED results of Medway Council controlled primary schools  since September are as follows:

Medway Primary School OFSTED Outcomes September 2013 to January 2014 
                                 Outstanding Good
Requires 
Improvement
Inadequate Total
Category
improved
Category
got worse
Number of
Schools
0 7 7 2 16 1 5
% of schools  
0 43 43 13      
% of schools
2012-13
6 34 46 14      

In 2012- 13 Medway Council was the  worst but one Local Authority in the country, on the proportion of Good or Outstanding primary school OFSTED outcomes. For the current school year it appears fractionally better, but in fact is much worse, as five out of six schools that changed their classification have actually got worse, compared to one that became better. 

Also this week has come the news that Napier Primary School, referred to previously, has had a second Monitoring Inspection, the conclusion being: "Evidence indicates the school has not improved quickly enough since the last monitoring inspection in October 2013. You have started to act on the recommendations made at that visit but too little is securely in place" ......

About Medway Council the Report comments: "The local authority rightly increased levels of support following the first monitoring inspection but too much was initially short term. For example, a teaching and learning consultant provided good coaching for two newly qualified teachers but this was for only two sessions. I am pleased this helpful support is due to be extended. Similarly the focused support for inexperienced staff from a specialist leader of education is working well but is limited to a short period of time. The local authority appreciates the need to increase these opportunities". Once again Medway Council has proved INADEQUATE in its support for a struggling school. But all will be well because it appreciates the need to increase opportunities it has failed to deliver before! 

Back to Warren Wood. I have been aware of the problems of this school for years, as I both have handled a number of appeals for grammar schools from parents, despairing of their children's life chances so severely damaged by the school, and also giving advice to parents who simply want their children out of this dreadful school. It is self-evident that Medway Council has failed miserably to support the school properly, although it has belatedly acted to try and rectify matters: "The governing body was disbanded by the local authority because of its failure to meet its responsibilities in holding senior leaders to account. Consequently, an interim executive board has been set up to ensure the school is held to account. Governors were unable to understand data and how it compared to similar institutions. Their knowledge of the school’s ability to raise achievement and progress was limited. As a result, they were unable to challenge leaders about the inadequate achievement, teaching and behaviour in the school. There was no evidence of training attended by governors, nor was there evidence that they understood their responsibilities in the process of performance management or safeguarding. Pupil premium funding was not allocated effectively enough to impact positively on the progress of those pupils who qualify for it. As a result, the ineffectiveness of the governing body led to the school’s current inadequate judgement". The Governing Body here are the fall guys, but it looks as if Medway Council has only acted AFTER the school, for which it is ultimately responsible, achieved the third worst SAT results in the Authority (down from fifth worst). Surely, given the comment from the Report that: "Leadership and management are inadequate because, over time, they have not tackled the low standards and lack of progress quickly enough. As a result of poor teaching, which was not checked by school leaders until very recently, pupils do not perform at national levels and too many of them leave the school without the skills appropriate to their next stage in education", the Council must have noticed the problems prior to this, especially given the history of the school. 

 

 

Read 11404 times Last modified on Monday, 24 November 2014 10:06

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