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Inspectors Praise Progress at Barnsley Academy

Academy has ‘successfully turned the corner’ says Ofsted

Ofsted inspectors have praised the progress underway at Barnsley Academy.

Following a disappointing inspection in February 2014, Ofsted has since conducted three monitoring visits, with the latest taking place last month, during which inspectors noted: ‘Evidence from this monitoring inspection indicates that the academy has successfully turned the corner.’

Executive Principal Nikki Shaw and her team, supported by the academy’s own School Improvement Board, have introduced a raft of improvements which have already begun to take effect. Key improvements identified by Ofsted included:

  • ‘Very strong leadership and a clear vision…’
  • ‘Robust, comprehensive and extremely well integrated strategies…to help all students achieve their potential’
  • ‘A clear and embedded culture of accountability at all levels of the academy…’
  • ‘Re-evaluation of the curriculum…to enhance the breadth, balance, continuity and progression of learning for students...’
  • ‘Greater emphasis on individual students’ progress…’
  • ‘A positive impact on behaviour and attendance…'
  • ‘Significant increase in the engagement of parents and the community…’

Inspectors praised the academy’s direct support for the wellbeing of its students, stating: ‘The academy has maintained and fundamentally improved its safeguarding, inclusion, support and care for its students, especially those who are most at risk of underachieving.’

The report also highlighted academy sponsor United Learning for its ‘excellent support strategically, financially and in the resources it provides’ and the academy’s School Improvement Board, which it described as ‘a highly effective body in its monitoring of the academy’s progress.’

Moving forward, Inspector’s noted the academy’s plans for the introduction of a new curriculum model from September 2015, which will ensure ‘students have better breadth, balance and continuity in what they study.’ The report also praised the academy’s decision to ‘invest its energies in supporting students in finding suitable provision with other providers’ for 2015/16, in light of reduced numbers entering its Year 12 in the next academic year.

Welcoming the report, Barnsley Academy Executive Principal Nikki Shaw said:

“We clearly recognise that there is still much to be done but are very pleased with the outcome of this latest monitoring inspection, which reflects the hard work and resulting progress being made here at Barnsley Academy. We would like to thank staff, students, parents and the wider community for their ongoing dedication and support.”

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Posted: Jun 23, 2015,
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