11 February 2010

Northamptonshire County Council is disappointed to learn that the OfSTED judgement relating to Weston Favell School confirms that the school requires special measures.

However, the judgement is in line with that of local authority officers and colleagues working through the National Challenge programme.

Councillor Andrew Grant, county council cabinet member for children and young people said: “The evidence we have from our own analysis, the intelligence we have from the National Challenge programme and now the verdict from OfSTED clearly demonstrates that the school does not have the capacity to secure rapid and sustainable improvement. This corroborates the position that we adopted in proposing an academy solution at Weston Favell School.

“During the consultation process, opponents argued that the local authority had not supported the school in its quest for improvement. However, the OfSTED inspectors have judged that despite good support from the local authority, and the National Challenge arrangements, ‘leadership has not yet been effective in driving the school forward to secure at least satisfactory standards once the outside help comes to an end.’

“No one would wish to detract from the achievements of pupils at the school last year but it is now very clear that this improvement would not have been possible without the concerted efforts of a wide range of improvement partners – local, regional and national.

“Also, if future pupils are to experience success and fulfil their potential we need a radical change at the school to ensure that all learners make at least good progress throughout their time in the school.

“We remain committed to an academy solution, however, the OfSTED judgement requires our swift action to put in place immediate measures to secure improvements across a range of school outcomes and features. This we will do with a matter of urgency and we will be holding discussions with the leadership of the school to take this forward.”