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Ofsted praise The Bridge School for ‘accelerating’ its rate of progress

Ofsted has praised The Bridge School in Ipswich for its progress since it was put into special measures last year Picture: GREGG BROWN

Ofsted has praised The Bridge School in Ipswich for its progress since it was put into special measures last year Picture: GREGG BROWN

Ofsted inspectors have praised a special school in Ipswich for its ‘accelerated’ progress since it was given the watchdog’s lowest rating and put into special measures last year.

The Bridge School in Ipswich Picture: ARCHANTThe Bridge School in Ipswich Picture: ARCHANT

Inspectors visited The Bridge School last month to see what steps it was taking to improve after it was given a rating of ‘inadequate’ in March last year.

At the time, the report said that safeguarding was ‘woefully ineffective’ and that there had been a ‘long-standing and serious decline in standards’.

After another inspection on September 12 last year, Ofsted inspector Stefanie Lipinski-Barltrop said that, having considered the evidence, safeguarding was still ‘not effective’.

However, it appears the school, for children with special educational needs and disabilities, is now making progress.

Ofsted’s most recent inspection, the results of which were published on Friday, show that the rate of improvement is ‘accelerating’.

The report reads: “The headteacher has an accurate view of the strengths and weaknesses.

“She has a team of leaders who share her passion and determination for pupils at the Bridge School to be safe, well cared for and well educated.

“As a result, the rate of progress is accelerating apace, staff absences are reducing, and processes and procedures are becoming more established and effective.

“Most notable is the progress leaders have made in safeguarding and behaviour management.

“Since the autumn term 2018, leaders at all levels have wasted no time in ensuring that their actions make a difference to the welfare and behaviour of children and pupils.

“The involvement in and dedication of the current leadership for the school to improve is very evident.”

The report goes on to say: “One comment made echoed the sentiment of others: ‘We have all been through rough times, but we have turned a corner.”

Pupil safeguarding, an area which education watchdog identified as being especially weak in its last inspection, has now also improved.

The report reads: “Since September 2018, leaders have continued to train staff effectively and ensure that systems are used consistently. Consequently, safeguarding is now effective.”


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