The acting head of an Alnwick school has highlighted how they are heading ‘onwards and upwards into the future’ after a critical Ofsted report.
In October last year, Lindisfarne Middle School was one of four schools in Northumberland to be deemed to require special measures.
But almost a year on, acting headteacher Steph Hall and the governors are pleased at the progress thatOfsted has commented favourably on, while accepting that there is still work to do.
Mrs Hall said that the inspection and its outcome provided everyone with an opportunity to review what they were doing.
The initial reaction was disbelief, anger even, but ‘as we have moved forward and started to look at ourselves, we realised that there was a lot we could do and needed to do’.
“The first thing we tackled was leadership, which included the governing body – it’s very different now, very proactive and supportive.”
While noting the support of all of the governors, Mrs Hall particularly praised the efforts of chairman Lalage Bosanquet, Phil Turner and Gustav MacLeod, who is the chairman of the steering group focused on Lindisfarne Middle School.
The governing body is responsible for the Aln Community Schools Federation – Lindisfarne and the Duke’s middle schools and the Duchess’s Community High School.
Mr MacLeod said that it is now about collaboration, not competition, as the three schools try to work together as much as possible.
Referring to Lindisfarne, he added: “The whole staff and parents are all together now in wanting to see the school make the improvements it should.”
Another area of focus has been communication with parents through the likes of celebration assemblies and newsletters.
Mrs Hall said: “We have been much encouraged by the positive feedback from parents.
“We truly value the partnership with parents and we listen and try to respond wherever possible”.