Troubled school makes specialist bid

IN a remarkable turn around of fortune a once-troubled Ipswich school is today launching a bid for specialist status.Once deemed to be failing by inspectors Holywells High School was put into special measures in 2001.

IN a remarkable turn around of fortune a once-troubled Ipswich school is today launching a bid for specialist status.

Once deemed to be failing by inspectors Holywells High School was put into special measures in 2001.

But today school bosses announced plans to gain specialist status school in business and enterprise.

If successful the 860-pupil school will receive hundreds of thousands of pounds in extra funding over the next four years to be used to develop the curriculum and improve standards.

Acting headteacher Ruth Everard spoke of her delight at announcing the news.

She said: "This is very exciting for Holywells and the launch is a testimony to the improvements that the school had made during the last four years in order for us to be at the point where launching a bid for specialist status is appropriate.

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"Holywells came out of special measures in March 2004. There were serious things that were not right in the school."

Mrs Everard said the school had now turned a corner in its fortunes and launching the bid was one of many signs that the school is improving.

She said: "Through a huge effort on the part of everyone here we have addressed those difficulties and we continue to address challenges with the motivation of giving all students the best opportunities we can offer in school and beyond.

"Launching the bid for specialist status underpins all the work we are doing and continue to do to raise achievement.

"We can now build on those improvements in terms of standards, the standing of the school in the community and partnerships with other schools and colleges, in the desire to improve the school forward."

Assistant headteacher Tony Hough, who is co-ordinating the bid, said an application for specialist status will be sent in October to the Department of Education and Skills (DFES).

As part of the bid the school had to raise £50,000 in funding.

Mr Hough said business and enterprise touched every area of the curriculum and specialist status in the subject would increase opportunities for children.

He said: "Specialist status is all about raising standards. It will drive the school forward, raise the aspirations of youngsters and instil confidence and a 'can-do' culture at Holywells."

N Does your child go to Holywells? Do you support the school's bid for specialist status? What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

N weblink www.holywells.co.uk

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