Sunderland school told by Ofsted inspectors that it must improve

Monkwearmouth Academy
Monkwearmouth Academy
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A Sunderland headteacher says he is committed to tackling any weaknesses after a secondary school was told it must do better.

Following a recent visit, Ofsted inspectors rated Monkwearmouth Academy as requiring improvement.

Fully committed to regaining our overall ‘good’ status

Steve Wilkinson

They said although the leadership, teaching and personal development of the pupils are good, the outcome for students requires improvement.

However, Steve Wilkinson, headteacher at the Torver Crescent school, said measures are already in place to address any weaknesses.

In their report, the inspectors said: “Outcomes are not yet good. Although progress is improving in a number of areas, pupils do not make consistently strong progress in a wide range of subjects.

“Their progress in lessons and across subjects has been too variable.

“Pupils have made significantly less progress in mathematics than is seen nationally, and variability remains in the quality of teaching. New curriculum plans are not yet consistently implemented.”

Inspectors said the progress of disadvantaged pupils is slower than that of their peers.

However, they said school leaders have acted decisively in the past year to improve leadership at whole-school and departmental level, and to improve the quality of teaching.

They said: “Pupils are making much stronger progress in key subjects, such as English and science.

“Governors are committed to ongoing improvement. “

Mr Wilkinson said areas for improvement had already been identified and changes put in place before the arrival of Ofsted.

He said: “Unfortunately, the timing of Ofsted’s visit, just a month into the autumn term, meant evidence of the benefit of these changes was limited.

“The academy’s leaders and governors are working hard to further improve outcomes for students, and are fully committed to regaining our overall ‘good’ status.

“We are pleased that Ofsted recognised the decisive action taken to accelerate progress, strengthen leadership and improve the quality of teaching.”

The headteacher said the report highlighted many positive aspects, including the support of personal development and welfare of pupils, and the broad and balanced curriculum.

Mr Wilkinson said: “It should be noted that in the summer, the results our students achieved were amongst the best in Sunderland.

“Monkwearmouth Academy remains in the top three schools in Sunderland, in terms of actual results and for providing added value to the student experience.

“Where Ofsted has recommended areas for improvement, which are made clear in the report, we wish to assure parents that these are being robustly addressed.”