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School where children 'feel at home' handed second 'good' Ofsted in a row

PUBLISHED: 17:32 23 December 2019 | UPDATED: 17:32 23 December 2019

Northgate High School in Ipswich has been rated 'good' in a recent Ofsted report  Picture: GREGG BROWN

Northgate High School in Ipswich has been rated 'good' in a recent Ofsted report Picture: GREGG BROWN

An Ipswich school where children "feel at home" has been handed its second 'good' Ofsted rating in a row.

This was the first Ofsted visit for Northgate High School head Rowena Mackie  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNThis was the first Ofsted visit for Northgate High School head Rowena Mackie Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Northgate High School was last inspected by the government body in 2015, when it was praised for its pupils' behaviour, leadership and the sixth form college.

That success has continued - and in its latest inspection between November 13 and 14 this year, the school was commended for its approach to helping disadvantaged pupils.

Teachers were also praised for their strong subject knowledge.

Inspectors said: "Pupils are considerate of each other, for example when moving round the school.

"Pupils say they feel safe at the school and have an adult they can talk to if they have any concerns.

"They told us that, if bullying does happen, staff, and particularly their pastoral officers, act quickly to resolve it."

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The school's sixth form received a glowing review - with inspectors describing it as a "vibrant learning community, where every student is valued as an individual".

However, the report did recommend improvements to the school's modern foreign language department - although planning for a new curriculum is under way, according to bosses.

More needs to be done to encourage extra-curricular opportunities for pupils in need of additional study support, inspectors added.

The board of governors were highlighted as a positive force for the school - with a strong focus on its strengths and weaknesses.

The report added: "Leaders and governors understand the specific risks that are present in the local area.

"Pupils are supported to resist 'peer group' pressure and know how to keep themselves safe."

This summer, the school ranked among the best mainstream schools in Ipswich and Felixstowe for its GCSE results, with 71.1% of students securing a grade 4 in English and maths.

For its A-Level courses, 76% of students received A*-C grades - with a quarter of all students leaving school with at least one A or A*.

In 2008, the school was judged to be 'outstanding'.

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