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Ofsted inspection 2019
Harris Academy Falconwood was inspected by Ofsted last month. This was Ofsted’s third inspection of our Academy.
We are one of the first schools in the country to be inspected under Ofsted’s brand new inspection framework. This judges schools according to a new set of criteria, with the achievement of pupils less prominent than before.
We are very pleased to have been rated a ‘Good’ school under this new framework. The Ofsted report is clear that ‘pupils value their education’ and ‘achieve well in a broad range of subjects’. Inspectors also judge that ‘leaders have high expectations of pupils’ behavior and are ambitious for their academic achievement’.
Our Academy was previously rated ‘outstanding’ and we are clear that our academic and pastoral standards are still just as high as they were before; however, Ofsted has recently changed its criteria for judging schools. Under its new criteria, Ofsted identified three new areas for improvement in order to be ‘outstanding’. These are:
- To ensure our ‘well-designed and ambitious’ new curriculum is put into practice. Ofsted would like to see more opportunities for students to study more music and computer science in Year 9 and beyond. Ofsted recognised that we had already begun to work on this before our inspection: ‘leaders have already taken steps to address this issue’ ;
- To ensure more students take up the extra-curricular opportunities already on offer, which inspectors found to be ‘interesting and exciting’ (they just want to see more participation);
- To enhance our careers education programme.
We acknowledge the significance of these three areas and will certainly prioritise them. Equally, however, we are pleased with Ofsted’s many broader findings about the Academy. Beyond the academic achievements of our Academy – which for our students are their passport to successful futures – Ofsted found:
- Our students to be ‘well-mannered and considerate’ and able to express themselves with confidence – well done to all students who spoke to the inspectors!
- A high quality of support for students with special educational needs and/or disabilities, and those from disadvantaged backgrounds;
- Effective support of students' personal development;
- Good support from leaders and the Harris Federation for teachers;
- Effective safeguarding.
Thank you to all parents, students, staff and governors who participated in this inspection.
Ms Terrie Askew
The full Ofsted Inspection Report can be found here.