Swaffham school ‘must act’ to address governance problems, inspector warns

Education news from the Lynn News, lynnnews.co.uk, @lynnnewscitizen on Twitter
Education news from the Lynn News, lynnnews.co.uk, @lynnnewscitizen on Twitter
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Urgent action is needed to tackle weaknesses identified at a town infant school, an Ofsted inspector has warned.

The Swaffham CE Infant School was deemed to “require improvement” following an inspection in February.

But a new letter, which has been published following a monitoring visit earlier this month, has concluded that senior leaders, governors and other interested parties are not doing enough to address the issues identified in the earlier report.

And associate inspector Deborah Pargeter said the school must act quickly to tackle the problems.

She wrote: “The strength of governance and the governors’ ability to fulfil their duties causes grave concerns and requires immediate attention.”

But she also praised headteacher Marion Link for her vision for the school, the improvements which have already been made there and her work to develop a new leadership structure.

And, on the governance issue, she added: “Senior leaders are aware that this needs to be addressed if the school is going to improve at a rate necessary to provide appropriate good education for pupils.”

Mrs Pargeter reported that attendance levels were improving, though they still remain below the national average.

She said the school was gradually succeeding in changing parental behaviour which had led to previously poor attendance rates.

She added: “Low expections of parents to bring their children to school have become engrained over time.”

The letter also said that teachers had made the expectation of good presentation of work clear to pupils, who had improved as a result of their comments.

And measures are also being taken to improve the quality of the school’s IT teaching, which the letter said does not yet fulfil all the curriculum’s requirements.

However, Mrs Pargeter also raised concerns over a lack of progress made by some staff to ensure children of differing abilities were properly challenged in their lessons.

She said there were several areas in which the teaching “limits children’s opportunities to make progress and their activities lack purpose.”