Success for Ipswich schools

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It was celebration time for two Chantry schools after they came top of the class in the primary school league tables.

St Mark’s Catholic Primary in Stone Lodge Lane West has been ranked the best performing school in the county, with 100 per cent of its pupils achieving at least level four in both English and Maths in their national curriculum tests, known as SATs.

Meanwhile, The Oaks Community Primary School in Aster Road is the most improved school in the county, with scores improving by 37 per cent between 2009 and 2012.

Despite such success stories, the picture county-wide looks bleak. Although there was some progress in both maths and English results for 11-year-olds sitting their SATs, Suffolk has again dropped down the national league table – resulting in the county being the third worst performing authority in the country.

Theresa Barker, headteacher of St Mark’s Catholic Primary School, said: “The success of the school is a tribute to the whole school community.

“Firstly the children, but also the staff, the governors, and the parents.

“We try to make St Mark’s as special as possible for everyone including the local community and the parishioners.”

Jeremy Pentreath, headteacher at The Oaks, was thrilled at the news, and insisted it was down to a team effort.

He said: “This is the reward for everyone’s efforts. It has been a team effort of teachers, teaching assistants, office staff – everyone works very hard.

“We really try to hone in on every child’s progress, particularly in reading, writing and maths.

“Every half term I sit down with the teachers and we review each child’s progress and look forward to what we need to do.

“We discuss how we are going to overcome any barriers. We try to look at the whole child from an academic point of view and getting them ready for learning.”

Kyson Primary in Woodbridge is also among England’s 200 most improved schools.

Headteacher Libby Brown said: “The reason for all our success is the brilliant teaching for each individual child. The teachers know exactly where they want each child to be every single week – it makes a massive difference. And our parents are superb as well.”

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