Marlwood School celebrates being taken out of ‘special measures’ by Ofsted

A school which had its struggles broadcast on a BBC documentary has now been taken out of ‘special measures’.

Marlwood School, in Alveston, South Gloucestershire, received a damning Ofsted report as filming took place for six-part series School, which aired in 2018.

But the latest inspection has led to the school being ranked ‘good’ in several areas, bumping it up to an overall rating of ‘requires improvement’.

Headteacher Del Planter said: “A lot of hard work has gone in to improving the school and to see the pride and joy as a result of this outcome is fantastic.”

When Marlwood appeared in the award-winning TV series, viewers watched as low staff morale and budget cuts contributed to an Ofsted rating of ‘inadequate’ in May 2017.

However, the latest report, published this month following a visit in December 2019, praises the school for its “community spirit”.

Although the quality of education is rated ‘improvement required’, the following areas are rated ‘good’: behaviour and attitudes, personal development and leadership management.

The inspectors wrote the school is enjoying “a new lease of life”, going on to praise pupils, teachers and ‘leaders’.

A general view of Marlwood School in Alveston. Photo by Dan Regan 14/09/2016 Reporter – Michael Yong Copyright – Local World

The report states: “Pupils behave well as they move around the school. They are respectful and have warm relationships with teachers.

“They feel teachers know them as individuals and care for them. There is very little bullying in school. Pupils and parents say that if there is a problem, teachers deal with it quickly.

“Leaders make sure that pupils who are feeling anxious or are vulnerable get the support they need to thrive.

“Led by the headteacher, teachers now expect more of pupils. The result is that more pupils are beginning to reach their potential.”

The inspectors suggested the school could improve by encouraging pupils to think more deeply about their work.

They also recommended that a focus should remain on writing skills because pupils make errors which are often not corrected.

Mr Planter, who was praised for his ambition, has expressed satisfaction with the progress being made.

He said: “I am delighted for the local community that Marlwood School is in a much stronger, positive and stable position than when I took up the Headship in September 2018.

“In June 2018 the school was judged not to be taking effective action towards the removal of Special Measures so for us to achieve this with three of the four areas graded as ‘Good’ is testament to what can be achieved through strong ambitious leadership and a school community working together for excellence.

“Student numbers are increasing rapidly and the school is now focussed on the next stage of progress towards the vision we have set out.”

Back to: Home Bristol NewsSource: Bristol Post

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