Kettering school disappointed by Ofsted grade

Kettering Buccleuch Academy.
Kettering Buccleuch Academy.

Leaders of a Kettering school say they are disappointed to have been graded as ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted.

Inspectors found Kettering Buccleuch Academy – which was panned for being inadequate in 2014 – had not improved enough to be given an overall rating of ‘good’, despite being graded as ‘good’ in four of the six judged areas.

The quality of teaching was found to be inconsistent, leaving some pupils unable to make enough progress.

Dame Sally Coates, director of secondary education at academy trust United Learning, said: “It is always difficult for an all-through school such as Kettering Buccleuch Academy to move up a grade during an inspection due to the number of key stages being considered for a single judgement.

“So, while we are disappointed that the academy has still been judged to require improvement, we are pleased by the substantial progress noted by the inspectors across the school.”

She added that the academy will be working hard to ensure there is a consistently high quality to every lesson.

School principal Dino Di Salvo said the school’s initiatives to improve their grade are a work in progress.

He said: “Throughout this report there is strong evidence of the improvements that have been taking place over the past two years and it is gratifying that so many of the initiatives under way are praised.

“However, this is a work in progress and we all know that it will take time for the good work that is under way to translate into measurable outcomes in results.

“It is pleasing that the progress of the sixth form and early years have been recognised as well as the happiness of students across the school.

“This report reflects where we are today but more importantly represents that we are making strong progress in our journey to being securely good.”

The school in Weekley Glebe Road has just short of 1,700 pupils on its roll and was graded as ‘good’ for effectiveness of leadership, personal development and behaviour, early years provision and 16 to 19 study programmes.

The Ofsted report by lead inspector Vondra Mays said: “Senior leaders, governors and members of the academy trust have an accurate view of the school’s strengths and areas for improvement.

“The school is well placed, through its improvement plan, to continue to improve.

“The school’s curriculum provides a good learning experience.

“Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development and understanding of British values are strong.

“Pupils’ progress has accelerated rapidly in key stage 4. In key stage 1, pupils attain well in the phonics screening checks.

“Children in early years get off to a happy start and make good progress.

“The sixth form is good. Students make good progress in both academic and applied qualifications.”