Higham Ferrers school celebrates incredible turnaround after Ofsted inspection

It's been rated as 'good' - just three years after inspectors branded it inadequate

Friday, 24th September 2021, 10:38 am
Pupils and staff are celebrating

Staff and pupils at a Higham Ferrers school are celebrating after they were rated as 'good' by Ofsted - three years after being branded inadequate in a damning report.

The Ferrers School in Queensway was criticised in a shocking report in 2018 in which education inspectors ruled it was falling short of acceptable standards.

But this month - having joined the Cambridge Meridian Academies Trust (CMAT) in 2019 - the school was given the second highest grade in all five key areas after an inspection in July.

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Angela Smith, principal of The Ferrers School, said: “We are thrilled with the findings of our recent Ofsted inspection.

"To have made such strong progress over the last two years, despite the challenges of Covid-19, is testament to each and every one of our staff and students in school who have worked incredibly hard.

“I am so proud of the rapid transformation that has taken place within school, and that the high standards and opportunities we provide have been recognised.

"Looking ahead, we will continue to deliver a high-quality educational experience and put learning and individual achievement at the centre of everything we do.”

Ofsted inspectors rated the school's 'quality of education’, ‘behaviour and attitudes’, ‘personal development’ and ‘leadership and management’ as good, with their post-16 provision given the same rating.

They found that:

- The school is welcoming and inclusive, with pupils feeling safe

- Relationships between pupils and with staff are positive, with pupils knowing that the quality of education in school is getting better all the time

- Pupil outcomes are better because the quality of education has improved

- Leaders and governors have established a positive school culture

- Pupils receive a high-quality curriculum about how they can keep themselves safe from harm, including learning about online safety and healthy relationships

Ofsted inspector Chris Stevens said: "Pupils, and students in the sixth form, are achieving better than they did before because the quality of education has improved.

"In most subjects, expectations are high and pupils understand what they need to know and be able to do at the right time."

The report also praised the school’s arrangements for safeguarding.

It added that, to improve further, leaders should ensure that the intent and implementation of the curriculum are equally ambitious for all pupils in all subjects.

Mark Woods, chief executive of Cambridge Meridian Academies Trust, said: “We are delighted with the results of the inspection at The Ferrers School.

"The school’s success is a real representation of our commitment to providing a high-quality education for everyone, at the heart of local communities.

"We are so pleased to have been a part of the school’s journey and excited to see what we can continue to achieve together in the future.”