Littlehampton Academy’s improvement plan is paying off

The road is still long, but the academy is moving in the right direction' D14451146a
The road is still long, but the academy is moving in the right direction' D14451146a

A ‘RELENTLESS drive’ to up standards at the Littlehampton Academy is starting to pay off – but more work is still needed before the school can move out of special measures, an inspection has revealed.

The latest monitoring inspection of the academy, has been, for the most part, positive, with Ofsted praising senior leadership for their commitment to change and the increasing standard of students’ attainment.

However, the most recent assessment has highlighted a few areas within the school which still need further work, with inspectors noting a variable quality in teaching at the school.

Despite this, however, the seven page update said: “The academy’s senior leaders are driven, relentless, focused and passionate.

“They have a sharper focus on what needs to be done to make necessary improvements.”

The monitory report was carried out last month with results released on Thursday.

It was in response to the 2013 Ofsted inspection, in which the education watchdog placed the school into special measures.

As part of this, Ofsted highlighted three key areas for improvement, which included the overall leadership, general teaching standard and student achievement and to the effectiveness of the academy council.

The latest findings highlight promising results, particularly following last term’s mock GCSE exams taken by year-11 students.

The report said teachers’ predictions about students’ achievements were more accurate than before.

“Students’ achievement is still some way short of the challenging targets set by senior leaders but does indicate improvement,” it said.

The report said student achievement in GCSE maths was ‘set to rise significantly’ in 2015 but that there was still a noticeable gap overall between disadvantaged students and their classmates.

Responding, the academy’s principal, Marianne Gentilli, said she recognised there was much work left to do.

She said the school would be doing more trial exams and add extra revision sessions this year, as well as continuing to monitor overall student progress and maintaining a ‘robust approach’ to behavioural management.

Ms Gentilli said: “We are certainly not complacent, and are focused on embedding recent improvements to ensure they pave the way on our journey out of special measures and on to good.”