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Ipswich's Stoke High School is recognised for improvements in 'good' Ofsted rating



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A high school that has been 'revolutionised' in all areas over the last three years has been judged to be 'good' overall by inspectors.

Ipswich's Stoke High School, which is part of Ormiston Academies Trust (OAT), has received a 'good' rating by Ofsted in all areas: quality of education, behaviour and attitudes, personal development and leadership and management.

It follows a 'requires improvement' grading at its last full Ofsted inspection in March 2018.

Inspectors said leaders, with the support of the trust, have made 'swift and effective changes to the curriculum and culture of the school' and all pupils have access to 'an ambitious curriculum'.

There is a 'strong ethos of respect' that continues into the classroom and there is a wide range of clubs, trips and experiences available for pupils of all ages and backgrounds.

"Pupils are proud to be part of Stoke High School’s vibrant, diverse community," the report said, following the inspection in March.

Stoke High School in Ipswich is delighted to have been judged 'good' by Ofsted (56807476)
Stoke High School in Ipswich is delighted to have been judged 'good' by Ofsted (56807476)

The academy’s leadership team led by Principal Andrew Robinson, with the ongoing support of the trust, are looking forward to continuing to build upon the strong foundations that have ensured the academy’s consistent improvement.

Mr Robinson said: "I am exceptionally proud of our staff and students, together we have transformed this school into a truly incredible place.

"Everything about our school has been revolutionised in the past three years and we are thrilled that Ofsted agree whole-heartedly with us. We’re determined to become the very best school in Ipswich and this incredible report confirms that we’re well on our way.

“I want to say a huge thank you everyone in our school community, including the trust who have been resolute in their support of our academy achieving this fantastic result.

"I look forward to continuing to work closely with our students, parents, staff, governors, the team at the trust and the wider community as we continue this positive journey.”

Inspectors also noted students with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are supported well and access the full curriculum.

"Teachers make clear adaptions to lessons to make them accessible and as a result students achieve as well as their peers," the report said.

Students also benefit from a high-quality personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education programme, which provides valuable independent advice and guidance that prepares pupils well for their daily lives outside school. This is supported by a robust safeguarding system which ensures students know how to keep themselves safe.

Aron Whiles, regional director east at Ormiston Academies Trust, said: "I want to offer my greatest congratulations to the whole community at Stoke High School on this fantastic result.

"I am proud to see the academy’s exceptional work in creating an ambitious curriculum and truly inclusive culture, highlighted clearly within the report.

“This overwhelmingly positive report is a true reflection of the relentless hard work and determination of the academy’s leadership team over the past few years, supported by the vibrant school community which was recognised by Ofsted.”

Nick Hudson, CEO of Ormiston Academies Trust, added that the leadership at the academy, supported by the trust, has done a 'remarkable job' of embodying their core mission of ensuring all students are provided with a great education.

"Their hard work and dedication to driving improvement has enabled them to create an environment where every student, regardless of their background and ability, are given the tools to succeed,” he said.

In terms of areas to improve, the Ofsted report said leaders need to evaluate what is working well in terms of supporting the weakest readers and adjust their reading curriculum and subject curriculums so that all weak readers are supported effectively.

It also said that for some key groups, like pupils with SEND, persistent absence remains high so leaders need to work closely with pupils, parents and external agencies to ensure that all pupils attend school regularly.

There are 698 students on the school roll.