Hard work pays off for Littleworth

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LESS than three years ago a Barnsley school was judged to be inadequate by Ofsted and given a notice to improve.

Now it has been named as the most improved primary in Yorkshire in the latest league tables.

In 2009 less than a third of the 11-year-old pupils at Littleworth Grange Primary Learning Centre reached the expected standard in both English and maths tests and a year later it was placed into a failing category by the schools watchdog.

While just 32 per cent of pupils achieved level four results in both key subjects four years ago, this year the figure was 92 per cent.

The increase was the biggest improvement in Yorkshire and the third highest of any school nationally in the key stage two standard assessment tests (Sats).

The school’s executive head teacher Sarah Creighton said: “It is down to a lot of really, really hard work by staff and pupils and support from governors and our school community.”

Mrs Creighton is also the executive head of Hill Primary in Barnsley and was appointed to Littleworth Grange two years ago.

The school came out of the inadequate Ofsted category last year and its Sats tests have improved year-on-year for the past four years.

It is now part of a partnership of neighbouring Barnsley schools operating as an academies trust.

Mrs Creighton said the school had put systems in place to improve the tracking of pupils’ performance and the quality of teaching. She added: “Some of the results have been absolutely fantastic. We are providing a quality curriculum to really engage both the pupils and the teachers. This is important because people need to be enjoying what they teach.”

She also paid tribute to her deputy, the head of school at Littleworth Grange Nicola Parker-Watts for helping to drive up standards.

Littleworth Grange was among a group of Yorkshire schools named in a table of the most improved in the country – ranking primaries where Sats scores have increased year-on-year since 2009.

Swinemoor Primary, in Beverley, was ranked tenth while other top performers included Broom Valley Community Primary in Rotherham, and Arbourthorne Community Primary and Hinde House School in Sheffield.