Inspectors say school must improve

A SUFFOLK middle school has been told it needs to make “significant improvement” by education inspectors, a report reveals today.

A SUFFOLK middle school has been told it needs to make “significant improvement” by education inspectors, a report reveals today.

Needham Market Middle School was visited by Ofsted inspectors in May and a report has now been published criticising the school's performance and achievement in English and maths.

It said: “This school requires significant improvement, because it is performing less well than it might in all the circumstances it could be reasonably expected to perform.

“The school is therefore given a Notice to Improve.

“Needham Market Middle School provides a caring, supportive and enriched education for its pupils. Standards in Key Stage 2 are average in English and mathematics and above average in science.

“However the school's overall effectiveness is inadequate because achievement in English and mathematics is inadequate and a significant proportion of those capable of building on what they achieved earlier in Key Stage 1 do not go on to attain higher levels in the Year 6 tests.”

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It was not all bad news for the 302-pupil school as it was praised by inspectors for other areas of school life.

The report said: “Many pupils excel in music, physical education and art, and benefit from the many enrichment opportunities provided by the school.

“A caring ethos pervades all areas of the school, pupils' well-being is good, they enjoy school and attend regularly. Teaching in music is outstanding.”

Alison Jones, senior education officer (school support), at Suffolk County Council said: “It's obviously disappointing that the school has been issued with a Notice to Improve by the inspectors.”

“Suffolk County Council, school staff and governors will be doing their utmost to remedy this.”

Do you have a child at Needham Market Middle School? What do you think of the report? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

NEEDHAM Market Middle School today issued a statement following the Ofsted announcement.

The statement said: “The inspectors were very positive about the ethos of the school, the level of care and support provided to learners and the enriched curriculum.

“They praised the pupils' behaviour and their personal development and well being, including their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

“The inspectors were pleased to see that pupils enjoy coming to school, feel safe and have positive attitudes to learning.

“In terms of development, the inspection team believes the school could be making more progress in some areas and, although the SATs scores at level 4 and above were 78per cent in English, 75pc in mathematics, the school has been given a notice to improve them.

“Staff will be working hard on these in the coming months. The local education authority will be providing maximum support.”

Sue Hull, Headteacher, said “We are determined to make improvement in the areas the report identified as requiring greater progress. We know that we have a successful school, and we will strive to make it even better.”

Ted Nash, chairman of governors, said: “We realise that we have work to do to improve progress made in some areas by pupils at age 11. We will do this with the help and support of the local authority.”

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