First class report for First Base

VULNERABLE children are getting an outstanding education at an Ipswich learning centre, Ofsted inspectors reported today.

VULNERABLE children are getting an outstanding education at an Ipswich learning centre, Ofsted inspectors reported today.

First Base Ipswich provides education for three to eight years old who have social, emotional and behavioural difficulties.

The centre is a pupil referral unit, which opened three years ago, and it is today celebrating a gold-starred Ofsted report.

In the report, inspectors said the unit had gone “from strength to strength” and singled out the outreach service for praise.

It said: “In particular, pupils make outstanding progress in their communication skills, social and emotional development and relationships and in meeting their individual targets.

“Staff have exceptional knowledge of pupils' needs and quickly establish relationships of high quality with them to secure their trust and enthuse pupils with their own success.”

Most Read

Relationships with pupils' parents and the wider community were recognised as outstanding by inspectors, while leadership and management were also found to be outstanding.

Inspectors said: “The headteacher provides very effective and inspirational leadership to an expanding team of expert teachers and support staff and valuable support is given to staff by the school management committee.”

Eithne Leming, headteacher at the Raeburn Road centre, said: “I am exceptionally proud of the skills of our staff, which has been commended by Ofsted as having a hugely positive impact on the group of children we work with.”

Pc Dave Bevan, police education officer and member of the First Base management committee said: “I really enjoy coming to First Base, largely because of the interaction with the children and staff.

“I am proud to find that Ofsted has recognised the good work that I and other visitors have known to exist for some time.”

Suffolk county councillor Sue Thomas, acting chair of the management committee, said: “This is an outstanding achievement. To have gained this recognition from Ofsted after just the three years that First Base has been operating is wonderful.

“First Base Ipswich is a credit to Suffolk, and the county council's long-term commitment to early intervention services for this vulnerable group of children.”

Has your child benefited from First Base Ipswich? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send an e-mail to


Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter