Action plan designed to tackle Havering’s low Ofsted results
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A council committee has been urged to monitor progress of schools in the borough, following disappointing Ofsted results.
A meeting with headteachers, chairs of governors, the director of children services and the regional school commissioner took place last Friday and an action plan is due to be made available at the end of the month.
The children and learning overview and scrutiny committee will be using its powers to intervene where there is a cause of concern.
This comes after a report from the Chief Inspector of Schools showed Havering was one of three local authorities in London alongside Bexley and Lewisham to have below national average Ofsted marks.
For secondary schools, Havering ranked 139 out of 152 local authorities – and the lowest in the capital – with 57per cent of pupils in good or outstanding schools, compared with 81pc nationally and 90pc in London.
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The Ofsted regional director for London said: “It is completely unacceptable that over 6,900 secondary school pupils in both Lewisham and Havering are not receiving a good education.
“We know that, hidden by London’s good overall performance, some specific groups of pupils have consistently underachieved for the past five years.
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“I am certain that parents of these pupils will want to ask questions about the education of their children in these schools.”
The council has also spoken to the regional school commissioner about bidding for the appropriate funding sources to support the implementation of the plan.
Monthly performance reviews are also taking place in schools, which have been under-performing.
The council has already issued three warning notices and three letters of concern to schools in the borough, where improvement has not been rapid enough or there is a concern about a particular aspect of the school’s work.
Leader of the council Cllr Roger Ramsey said: “Just before Christmas we received Ofsted reports on children’s Social Services and some schools. Our childrens’ director Tim Aldridge and his team are working to address the issues raised in both these reports.
“Existing plans for improvement have been acknowledged, and a plan of action is in place for both School Improvement and Social Care to ensure that both services are enhanced further in line with Ofsted’s recommendations.
“Funding is always a problem for Councils like ours where we receive so much less government support those areas whose needs are perceived to be greater. However we are determined to drive up performance in all sections.
“In response to the challenges across the school sector, we have in conjunction with the Regional Schools Commissioner (who is responsible for academies) recruited Dame Joan McVitie to chair an Improvement Board to focus in on the key challenges facing the secondary sector.”
The children and learning overview and scrutinty committee is due to meet to discuss the progress of the action plan at the town hall tonight (Thursday).