Inspectors praise village secondary school

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INSPECTORS have heaped more praise on an outstanding school.

Whitburn Church of England Academy was given the top “outstanding” grading by the Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools (SIAMS).

Inspectors found the school is a “happy, relaxed and thriving community,” and that “values are modelled in the quality of relationships.” The over-subscribed school has 977 pupils aged between 11 and 16 and hopes to open a sixth form, if funding can be secured. Principal, Alan Hardie, said: “We are delighted that the report recognises not only our pupils’ academic successes, but also their behaviour and attitude towards their learning. The report is also a tribute to the unstinting efforts of staff and governors, supported by parents and carers, in removing barriers to learning and allow our pupils to succeed”.

As well as recognising the school’s outstanding exam results and academic achievements of the pupils, the inspectors also found that “attendance is outstanding, behaviour is exemplary and relationships between all community members are excellent.”

The report reads: “Examination results in RE at GCSE are excellent and governors are effective in ensuring that the Christian character of the academy is sustained and continually developed.”

However, SIAMS also notes room for further improvement, saying the school should “increase opportunities for pupils to develop their understanding and appreciation of diversity and of other faiths and cultures.”