Struggling Sunderland school turned around after poor inspection report

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A SUNDERLAND school which was struggling 12 months ago has now been given the thumbs up by education chiefs.

In June last year, Bernard Gilpin Primary School, in Houghton, was issued with a notice to improve by Ofsted, but has now been dubbed a good school overall with an outstanding headteacher.

The report into the Hall Lane school said: “Bernard Gilpin is a good school. It has made rapid improvements since the previous inspection.

“It is not yet outstanding because the achievement of pupils, their behaviour and the quality of teaching are good rather than outstanding.”

The inspectors said the skills and abilities of children when they enter the reception class are broadly average, but they make good progress in the Early Years Foundation Stage.

The report said: “Attainment at the end of Year 6 is above average overall, although slightly lower in writing. Teaching is mainly good and some is outstanding. In the best lessons, there is a high level of challenge and a brisk pace to lessons.

“Pupils’ behaviour and their attitudes to learning are good. They talk with enthusiasm about the recent improvements to the school and take great pride in their achievements. Pupils say they feel very safe in school.

“The headteacher provides outstanding leadership. He is well supported by a governing body that now holds the school to account and senior and middle leaders who have risen to the challenge of improving the school.

“The impact of their work is evident in improvements in pupils’ achievement and their behaviour. The leadership of teaching and the management of performance ensure that the quality of teaching is rapidly improving.”

Inspectors said to improve further the school needs to raise achievement in writing to match that of reading and mathematics and improve the quality of teaching to outstanding.

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