March school goes into special measures

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No Caption ABCDE ENGANL00120130627151941

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A headteacher has vowed to turn around the fortunes of a March primary school which has been placed in special measures.

Maple Grove Infant School had previously received “good” ratings for Ofsted but has dropped to “inadequate” in four categories during the latest inspection, which occurred between September 24 and November 12.

The report, which was published on Friday, highlighted concerns with pupils progress in literacy and numeracy along with some teaching.

But the inspection team, headed by Samantha Stewart, praised the school for its work in involving parents and the pupils’ manners.

Headteacher Theresa Luter said: “We are very disappointed in this outcome. However, we are all determined to work harder to move the school back to a ‘good’ category as soon as possible.”

The inspection team, who had incorrectly spelt the headteacher’s name, criticised the governing body as it had “not fulfilled its core responsibility” and found the leadership and governors “have not ensured the teaching is good enough and, standards have consequently declined to a level that is unacceptably low.”

While most pupils are keen to learn with good behaviour seen at lunch and play times, the team found low level disruption leading a loss of lesson time.

It states: “Pupils do not have a secure grounding in the basics of reading, which in turn affects their enjoyment, particularly for weaker readers.

“Teachers do not have high enough expectations of what their pupils can achieve; consequently progress is poor and current attainment is below average. Progress is particularly weak for more able pupils.

“Subject leaders do not lead the development of their subjects well. They do not have a clear picture of the areas of strength and weaknesses. This has led to a rapid decline in standards, particularly in mathematics and literacy.”

But the report states that reception pupils are quick to settle into school routine and staff make good use of technology to record and monitor the children’s achievements.

It also praises the leadership team for working hard to engage parents in the life of the school.