‘Turbulent time’ reported by Ofsted at Gorefield as inspectors brand school ‘inadequate’ and says all areas need improvement

John Starling pictured when he was head teacher at a school in Aylsham, Norfolk.

John Starling pictured when he was head teacher at a school in Aylsham, Norfolk. - Credit: Archant

A headt teacher has been told by Ofsted that leaders at his school have “an overly generous view of the quality of provision” and must take urgent action to address safe guarding.

Gorefield Primary school has been warned that safeguarding is ineffective because the leaders and governors have “not created a culture of vigilance around child protection.” The school has been labelled ‘inadequate;’.

Tracy Fielding, lead Ofsted inspector, said: “Gorefield has been through a period of significant disruption over the past three years since the previous inspection.

“It has been a turbulent time, with significant upheaval in leadership and staffing.

“This has led to instability and a lack of consistency in the actions taken to raise standards.


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“Leaders records of monitoring for safeguarding are of poor quality.

“There is insufficient evidence that leaders take appropriate action to protect vulnerable pupils.”

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Gorefield Primary, which has 109 pupils from four to 11, has been rated as “inadequate” for is leadership and management and quality of teaching under the guidance of head teacher John Starling who joined in February 2015.

Ofsted inspectors say the school needs improvement in behaviour, pupil outcomes and early years provision.

In its last inspection three years ago the school received a rating of good.

Strengths at the school include children in key stage one and two being at or above the national average, and pupil attendance, which is above average.

Partnership with parents: “is a real strength of the school,” she added and said some senior leaders had been effective in maintaining and improving aspects of the education received by pupils.

Sports funding is used well and having its own pool mean children benefit from the opportunity to swim.

However, leaders do not evaluate the effectiveness of additional funding for disadvantaged pupils or those with special needs or disabilities.

“Although improving, teaching, learning and assessment are not yet securely good.

“Leaders acknowledge that some weaker teaching has affected pupils’ progress and needs to be remedied to ensure that the pupils who have fallen behind catch up quickly, particularly in English and mathematics.

“Leaders self evaluation is over generous and the school’s plans for improvement lack detail and precision.

“Learning activities are too often not demanding enough.

“The most able have to wait too long before they get started on work that extends their thinking. This slows down their progress.”

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