Rise in special measures criticised

A TEACHING union has today criticised the rise in the number of schools being placed in special measures after two in Suffolk were added to the list last term.

A TEACHING union has today criticised the rise in the number of schools being placed in special measures after two in Suffolk were added to the list last term.

There are now four schools in the county which have been classified as failing after Sproughton Primary School and Leiston Middle School joined Halifax Primary School in Ipswich and Ixworth Middle School between August and December last year.

It was announced today that across England the number of schools judged to be failing rose by 17 per cent last term, but Ofsted admitted the bar had been raised when inspections took place.

Hilary Bucky, regional sectary for the National Union of Teachers in the Eastern region, said: “The goalposts have been moved.


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“Schools that used to be deemed satisfactory, which the normal person on the street is happy with, are no longer being told they are satisfactory.

“It's moving the bar quite arbitrarily and it's bad for moral.

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“We're not saying standards are not important to teachers; they want the best for the children they teach.

“But if a school goes into special measures it is like a bereavement.

“It has a terrible affect on the whole community and standards can slip, not rise, afterwards as a result.”

A spokeswoman for Ofsted said: "What was considered good ten years ago may not be considered good any longer.

"Our expectations as taxpayers and consumers are always rising, and so too are expectations of public services including education.

"Parents want good schools for their children and schools should aspire to be good or better.'

And a spokesman for Suffolk County Council added: “We're dealing with a very small number.

“Schools used to be visited by Ofsted every four years, but now if a school is doing well they will leave it alone.

“They will go in there if a school needs help and they will put together an action plan to make it better.”

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