‘Academy chain says school has to improve education

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AN academy chain has downgraded another school which it recently took control of, saying it requires significant improvement.

Reach4 commissioned an independent inspection of Hexthorpe Primary School, Doncaster, which had previously been rated as “outstanding” by Ofsted in 2007.

Reach4 took over responsibility for the academy in September and it has been now been graded “Requires Significant Improvement”.

In light of the serious and significant concerns that Reach4 had about Hexthorpe, the trust commissioned the independent inspection to examine all areas of the school’s operations.

Barring Early Years provision which scored as “good”, the inspection found Hexthorpe to need improvements, and Reach4 says it will not accept the level of “poor education”.

Libby Nicholas, CEO of Reach4, said: “It is clear from this disappointing report that Hexthorpe has not been providing a good enough education for quite some time.

“At Reach4 we will simply not accept this level of poor education. Children get one chance with their education and we are determined to fix the problems that are apparent at Hexthorpe.

“That work is now under way, and we are confident that the measures we are putting in place will transform Hexthorpe and deliver on our promise of ‘inspiration beyond measure’.”

Key changes that have already been made by Reach4 since the independent inspection include new staffing appointments to improve the quality of teaching and learning and staff development training and mentoring of teachers by the Reach4 education team.

The Yorkshire Post revealed last month that Reach4 had appointed a new head of a primary school which it found to be inadequate after taking it over, despite it having an outstanding Ofsted report. An independent report into the Hill Primary Academy in Thurnscoe, Rotherham, commissioned by the chain was strongly critical of the school.