Calls for council to take action as third of Northamptonshire secondary schools are not good enough

A councillor is urging Northamptonshire County Council to take steps to tackle the current situation in which a third of the county’s secondary schools are under par.

By Sarah Ward
Wednesday, 20th March 2019, 5:27 pm
Updated Wednesday, 20th March 2019, 5:31 pm
Lodge Park in Corby was recently rated as inadequate.
Lodge Park in Corby was recently rated as inadequate.

Labour’s Julie Brookfield is putting forward the motion at tomorrow’s (March 21) full council and will ask the authority to put the issue of school quality front and centre of plans going forward.

According to the council’s latest performance report only 64 per cent of secondary schools are graded as good or outstanding by Ofsted. The remaining 36 per cent are ranked by school inspectors as requires improvement or inadequate.

This compares to 82 per cent of Northamptonshire primaries being graded as good or better.

The council acts as the local education authority, although the majority of schools are now within self governing academy trusts.

Cllr Brookfield’s motion, which will be voted on by all councillors, says: “This council is concerned that there is a widening gap in performance, as judged by Ofsted assessment, in Northamptonshire secondary schools and academies.

“The council recognises that, while there are exceptions, too many of our secondary schools and academies are inadequate or require improvement and that there should be a concerted effort to improve the quality of educational provision for all children and young people in Northamptonshire.

“While the council has limited influence over academies, there remains a duty to ensure pupils make good and sustainable progress in their education.”

The long-standing councillor who represents the Corby West ward wants the council to intervene more quickly in academy trusts when one of its schools is identified as being at risk of underachieving and she wants the council to write to the Regional Schools Commissioner Martin Post to request his intervention when a schools is given a requires improvement or worse grading.