Priesthorpe School needs to improve, says Ofsted


The headteacher at Pudsey Priesthorpe School has vowed to tackle issues at the school with ‘urgency and determination’.

Martin Blacoe’s comments follow an Ofsted inspection which downgraded Priesthorpe’s rating from ‘good’ in 2012 to ‘requires improvement’.

The inspection praises strong leadership from the headteacher, culture of safety and personal development at the school. It also says pupils being well looked after, but concerns were raised about a ‘variable’ quality of teaching and there are specific concerns around attainment in maths.

The report adds:

“Pupils do not make good progress from their various starting points. In Year 11 in 2016 pupils’ progress was significantly below the national average.”

In a letter to parents headteacher Martin Blacoe said

“There are many strengths to celebrate within the report as well as key areas for improvement, which governors, leaders, staff and I will tackle with urgency and determination.

“We are clearly disappointed that our judgment for ‘Overall Effectiveness’ has reduced from ‘Good’ in our previous 2012 inspection to ‘Requires Improvement’.

“The key reason underpinning this judgment lies in outcomes at key stage 4, with particular reference to mathematics.”

Mr Blacoe said a new maths faculty was appointed for the 2016/17 academic year and added:

“The new maths faculty are securing rapid and sustained improvements from students and we are delighted that OFSTED recognised this progress when they stated that: ‘Subject leadership is now an emerging strength at the school. In mathematics, for example, the change in leadership and staffing has brought stability and continuity to teaching and there is a clearly improving picture of progress in mathematics for pupils across the school. This has been endorsed by positive pupil comments’.”

Mr Blacoe’s letter can be read in full here.

The report can be read in full here.

The Dispatch
reported last month how Priesthorpe is consulting with parents to become an academy. The consultation end on March 1.


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