Secondary drops a grade in Ofsted ratings

Stocksbridge High School has slipped a grade after its latest inspection by Ofsted.

With pupils failing to make sufficient progress in some subjects, the secondary now ‘requires improvement’ after previously being rated as ‘good’.

Some 35 lessons at school were assessed over two days this month.

Inspectors found that not enough pupils make the progress that is expected of them from the start of Year 7 to the end of Year 11 in a wide range of subjects, including English and mathematics.

Standards reached by some boys are not as high as those reached by girls.

“There is not enough teaching that is good or better,” says the report. “Where teaching requires improvement, students lose interest in their learning and are sometimes inattentive.”

Behaviour needs improvement because not all teachers apply rules consistently, allowing some students to break them. Not all teachers explain clearly enough to students exactly how to improve their work, and students are not always clear about what they are meant to be learning.

When advice is given, students are not always given time to respond.

However, the report highlights the strengths of the school, including a safe environment and support of parents.

And it suggests a better future. “Senior staff and governors have communicated a very clear view of the improvement for the school, which has gained the support and commitment of staff.”

Already changes to the curriculum and recent partnerships are having a positive impact on behaviour, achievement and quality of teaching.

And there is some good and outstanding teaching in the school.

Headteacher Steve Davies said the report was a fair and accurate picture.

He said: “We are delighted the inspectors recognised the significant strengths in our school community. They describe a safe and welcoming environment, with supportive and committed staff.”

Sandra White, chair of governors, said a significant link had been forged with the outstanding Notre Dame High School in Ranmoor. “We have been building partnerships to support us in ensuring the very best education for our young people.”