Ofsted: Oakmeeds Community College ‘making progress’

GCSE results day, delighted students at Oakmeeds Community College. Susanna Fell, Ellen Shaw and Mikaila Gurney. Pic Steve Robards SUS-140821-130558001

GCSE results day, delighted students at Oakmeeds Community College. Susanna Fell, Ellen Shaw and Mikaila Gurney. Pic Steve Robards SUS-140821-130558001

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A secondary school placed in special measures a year ago has made progress – according to Ofsted inspectors.

Oakmeeds Community College in Burgess Hill has been praised for improvements in teaching and helping students to reach their potential.

Students’ rates of progress and levels of achievement continue to increase and should be reflected in the GCSE examination results this summer.

Colin Taylor

The school was placed in special measures in March last year, after inspectors said students at the school were failing to reach their academic potential after GCSE r esults dropped below the national average in 2013.

Inspectors also highlighted ‘inadequate’ progress in English and mathematics and weakness in the quality of marking.

But Ofsted found the hard work of teachers to improve is ‘evident’ across the school.

Colin Taylor, headteacher at Oakmeeds, said: “I am delighted that Ofsted have seen further significant improvement since the previous visit last term and continue to recognise the hard work and commitment of everyone involved.

“There is no doubt real change is happening at the college.

“Students’ rates of progress and levels of achievement continue to increase and should be reflected in the GCSE examination results this summer.

“There is still further work to be done but clearly we are now well on the way.”

Exam results in 2014 showed the proportion of students achieving five good GCSE grades, including English and Maths, was higher than in 2013.

A spokeswoman for Oakmeeds said: “Ofsted inspectors were very positive about the progress made by staff and students at Oakmeeds Community College, following their two-day monitoring inspection last month.”

The Ofsted report states: “Trial examinations and other assessments show the increasing rate of progress compared with last year.

“Leaders and teachers work with other schools to check their assessments are correct in order to predict accurately.”

Inspectors also found teachers ensure all lessons meet the needs of each student.

The report states: “Improving teaching is leading to higher levels of achievement, increased rates of progress and smaller gaps between groups of students.

“It is increasingly a strength of the college that students know their levels and grades and what they need to do to make further improvement.”

Inspectors added that staff care for the students well, and the behaviour of students in lessons is ‘often exemplary’, and praised governors for increasing contact with different departments in the school to become better informed about progress.