Headteacher's Newsflash 06/10/17

Ofsted update

As you are probably well aware we were visited by Ofsted this week, I need to be clear that I cannot discuss any judgements that were made on the day as the report is sent off for moderation by another group of inspectors. 

The inspection was initially a Section 8 monitoring visit, similar to the one conducted all the way back in November 2016 by HMI Bonenfant, to check the progress being made against the areas for improvement from the last Section 5 inspection in May 2016 when Mr Lonergan was Headteacher.  During the course of the first day the lead inspector, HMI Seneviratne, decided that there was enough evidence to convert to a full Section 5.

Once an inspection is converted from a Section 8 to a Section 5 it meant that a school will be judged against all the standards laid out in Ofsted’s Section 5 Inspection Framework handbook.

So what now?  Well in the next 10 days I will be sent a draft of the report to check for accuracy, the report will then be reviewed, after approximately another 10 days we will then be able to make the report available to you as a parent or carer of a child at the school.  Soon after the report goes live on the Ofsted website.

We will of course continue to keep you updated with any news on this and I would very much like to thank those many parents and carers that came into the building to talk about the changes that have taken place over the past 12 months, those parents that called into school and spoke to the inspectors on the phone and the many of you that emailed us to pass your comments regarding improvements to the inspectors.  We were overwhelmed by the very positive response.

All we are trying to do is provide the best education we can for your child, we think we are doing the right things in the right way and whilst I totally appreciate that sometimes when I am asking as Headteacher that pupils wear uniform, do homework, talk to other adults and pupils with respect that for some prior to my arrival 44 weeks ago this was not typically asked for and this can cause conflict between home and school I am doing it for the right reasons.  I know that there has been a huge change that we are continually raising our expectations for your child and for my staff, but your child deserves a good standard of education and my staff deserve to work in a calm and friendly environment.

I certainly hope that the improvements right across the school and positive changes to our school culture will be recognised because a lot of what has been done and achieved to date is also largely down to the vast support I have received from yourselves right at the beginning of last year when I laid out the expectations of the Red Line; your child’s school is about learning.

Attendance matters

I don’t think we would have a weekly Newsflash without some mention of attendance.

It is crucially important for us to continue with our great start to this year on the back of the very impressive exam results for GCSE, A Level and Vocational.

We can only continue to improve by making sure pupils attend on a regular basis.  Anything below 95% really is not regular, it actually becomes quite concerning and we must all face a really difficult fact that if you are not sending your child to school on a regular basis then you are seriously limiting their education opportunity.

The more often pupils attend, the better they do in their exams.

The better someone’s exam grades are, whether they are at GCSE, A Level or Vocational the more options for employment, training and higher education they have.

There are also lots of research studies conducted on people’s level of education, their wealth, health and happiness.  The studies suggest that the better educated someone is the more likely they are to live longer, have fewer health issues and complaints, earn more money over their life and generally be much happier.

Your children are fantastic, I thoroughly enjoy coming to work every single day because the pupils at this school make it such a lovely place to work. 

Please send them in everyday, we miss them when they are off.

And finally…

We have been shortlisted in this year’s Educate Awards in the 3 following categories-  

  • Outstanding Commitment to Sport in a Secondary School
  • Communication Award
  • Spirit of Enterprise Award

2017 has seen an unprecedented number of entries and the quality across all categories has certainly impressed the Educate judges, making it a very tough decision-making process. Judges this year commented that the standard of entries was so high, that in some categories, you could have made a very good case for shortlisting just about every applicant. Therefore it is already an outstanding achievement to have made the shortlist, not once but three time!

Forthcoming Dates for Your Diary:

3rd October Y13 Parents Uni Finance Info Eve  6pm

19th October Acoustic Night 6pm (Tickets £2.50 available from reception)

20th October INSET Day school closed to students

23rd-27th October HALF TERM         

Term Dates and Key Dates can be found on your MyEd parent app or on the school website here: https://www.gateacre.org/about-us/term-dates/

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