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Tuesday, 04 December 2012 00:00

Analysis of Kent & Medway OFSTED results, following damning Report from Inspectorate

The Annual OFSTED Report from Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Education, published last week, contains damning statistics on the state of Kent and Medway’s Primary schools for the year ended August 2012, which has rightly attracted considerable media criticism.  I was on holiday in France and so unable to make a closer examination of the figures, which I have now completed, and somewhat to my surprise this analysis shows a much rosier picture. I have been collecting data on all OFSTED Inspections in Kent and Medway for nearly three years, and the primary figures up until August are as follows. All figures are given as percentages:

Comparison of OFSTED Reports for Kent & Medway Primary Schools,

against national figures by percentage

 

Outstanding

Good

Satisfactory

Inadequate

Kent

6

35

45

13

Medway

0

34

44

22

National

14

49

32

6

In fact the figures over three years together are far worse than the comparable data for 2011-12, showing that in both authorities, the last year has actually seen considerable improvement,  albeit from a very low base.

Nevertheless, with Kent 10th from bottom in the whole country, with just 55% of primary school Inspections being Good or Outstanding for 2011-12, and Medway immediately behind at 54%, this improvement is nowhere near good enough, and reveals years of underachievement by schools in both Local Authorities.

These facts I knew, but because of personal circumstances have not been able to record OFSTED Inspections since September. However, this report has spurred me to do so, and I will over the next month incorporate them into the relevant pages on the website, at Kent & Medway. What the figures show is a much improved state of affairs in Kent, but no changed conclusions for Medway, because of the small number of new schools inspected........

 

 

In the meantime, here is a summary of the full set of Primary school OFSTED Reports for Kent and Medway since September, also showing change from the previous Inspection. These new Inspection outcomes operate on a different set of awards from in previous years, with the old ‘Satisfactory’ being changed to ‘Requires Improvement’.

Kent: 

School

Town

Grade

Change

Sheldwich

Faversham

Outstanding

Up one

Cobham Primary Gravesham Outstanding Up one

Kingsnorth CofE

Ashford

Good

Up one

Brookfield Junior

Aylesford

Good

Up one

Bean

Dartford

Good

Up one

Gateway Community

Dartford

Good

Up one

Worth

Deal

Good

Up one

Capel-le-Ferne

Folkestone

Good

Up one

Shears Green Junior

Gravesham

Good

Up one

Shorne Cof E

Gravesham

Good

Up one

Bobbing Village

Sittingbourne

Good

Up one

Canterbury Road

Sittingbourne

Good

Up one

Iwade Community

Sittingbourne

Good

Up one

Hildenborough CofE

Tonbridge

Good

Up one

Snodland CofE

Snodland

Good

No change

Holy Family RC

Maidstone

Requires Improvement

Up one

The Brent

Dartford

Requires Improvement

No change

Warden House

Deal

Requires Improvement

No change

St Richard’s Catholic

Dover

Requires Improvement

No change

St Mary of Charity

Faversham

Requires Improvement

No change

Greenfields

Maidstone

Requires Improvement

No change

North Borough Junior Maidstone Requires Improvement No change

High Firs Primary

Swanley

Requires Improvement

No change

St Stephens

Tonbridge

Requires Improvement

No change

Aylesford Primary

Aylesford

Special Measures

Down one

Cage Green

Tonbridge

Special Measures

Down one

Not only does this show further improvement in Grades to 58%, closer to last year’s national average of 60%, what is more remarkable is that 58% of the schools have improved their classification, showing a strong upward trend. Sadly, two more Kent Primary schools have been placed in Special Measures, which means they are likely to be forced to become academies. Although this is still a small sample, there is no reason to think it is atypical. Congtatulations to Cobham Primary School  & Sheldwich Primary School on their Outstanding awards. 

The improvement is underlined by a parallel advance in Key Stage Two results, with 78% of Kent children achieving national target of Level 4 in maths and English in 2012, compared with 74% in 2011. Whilst still just below the national average of 79% and so there is much to be done, it underlines the sense that Kent has at last awakened to what schools and children need, and results are coming, as KCC implements its new policies, described in the document “Delivering Bold Steps in Kent”, published in May.

Medway

Meanwhile in Medway, the picture for the same period is as follows: 

School

Town

Grade

Change

Maundene

Chatham

Good

No change

Brompton-Westbrook Primary Gillingham Good Up one

Deanwood

Gillingham

Good

Up one

Twydall

Gillingham

Good

1st Insp Academy

High Halstow

Hoo

Requires Improvement

1st Insp Academy

Temple Mill

Strood

Requires Improvement

No change

Sherwin Knight Infant

Strood

Requires Improvement

No change

St Mary’s Island

Chatham

Special Measures

Down one

Although too small a sample to draw conclusions, this table is noteworthy for two reasons. Firstly, it continues the disgraceful situation that NO Medway primary school from the 65 OFSTED Inspections I have logged has been found Outstanding by OFSTED. a shocking statistic (Kent has 19 over the same period). Secondly, the failure of Medway Council, and possible more importantly the governors of St Mary’s Island CofE Voluntary Aided School, the school with the most prosperous hinterland in the whole of Medway, who allowed it to fall into Special Measures.  I have had clients at the school over each of the past four years and have been shocked by the reports I have received. If I could see this from a distance, why did no-one in authority observe and take action on the same? Hopefully, Barbara Peacock, the new director in Medway will be able to bring about similar changes to those being undertaken in Kent. It is a colossal task, but this time the Council’s Report on Low Standards in Primary Schools appears to offer little hope that the Council understands what to do about its problems. You can read my comments on the Report here.

Last modified on Sunday, 16 March 2014 17:17

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