Headteacher proud of 'relentless' team as Yorkshire school goes from 'requires improvement' to 'good'

A headteacher at a school in Yorkshire has praised his 'relentless' staff after Oftsted upgrades its rating from requires improvement to good.

When Ofsted previously visited Hyrstmount Junior School, on Highcliffe Road in Batley, back in January 2018, it was graded as requires improvement.

But four years on the school has transformed its fortunes. Inspectors now rate it as good overall, with an outstanding grade for personal development.

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In their report, inspectors from the education watchdog said: “Pupils bring the school rules of ‘be ready, respectful and safe’ to life.

Head teacher Matthew Leach with students, from the left, Zakariya, seven, Khalid, eight, Haalah, eight, Muhammad, 10, Nooraniya, 10, and Husnaa, ten

They like the school’s ‘heroic’ values and said that these ‘help you to become a good student’. Everyone takes pride in theschool.

“Adults have established a positive environment where everyone gets along.

“Pupils behave well around school. They feel safe. Personal development is exceptional. Pupils understand the importance of treating people equally.”

Senior leaders and governors have prioritised school improvement since the previous inspection.

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There was particular praise for the “rich curriculum” and the learning mentors, who are a strength of the school.

The report said: “The head teacher has developed a strong team of leaders who are now supporting other staff. There has been a sharp focus on developing a curriculum that is well sequenced and well planned.

“Leaders have been sensitive to the community they serve.”

Reflecting on the latest report, head teacher Matthew Leach said: “I am immensely proud that Ofsted have recognised the quality of education at Hyrstmount and the ‘exceptional’ work we do in school to meet children’s personal development.

“Everybody has worked incredibly hard over the last few years to achieve this inspection outcome – it has been a real team effort with staff showing a relentless determination to do their very best for the pupils in their care.

“It is a privilege to be the head teacher of such a fantastic school and to have the pleasure of working with our wonderful children and families.

“To have made the improvements that needed to be made, and to have achieved a ‘good’ outcome against the backdrop of a worldwide pandemic, is an accomplishment that the whole school community should be very proud of.”