MP sends ‘huge congratulations’ to school celebrating Good Ofsted

By Jill Dando News

An MP has sent his ‘huge congratulations’ to students, staff and a Trust after their school excelled in its Ofsted report.

The King Alfred School Academy students

James Heappey praised the high-flying 11-18 The King Alfred School Academy in Highbridge, Somerset after their brilliant report. 

The academy gained a glowing clean sweep of Ofsted Good ratings – just five years being placed in special measures.

In a clean sweep of Good Ratings, inspectors praised the academy’s Quality of education, its Behaviour and attitudes, Personal development, and Leadership and management. 

They also highlighted the success of its expanding Sixth Form which has seen numbers soar in recent years.

Mr Heappey, who is also in the Cabinet, said: “From where the school was just a few short years ago, to now being rated as Good in all areas is testament to The Priory Learning Trust and the hard work of all the staff and students.”

He added: “Huge congratulations to all.”

Strong Community, Safe and Positive

The Ofsted report opened with inspectors praising the ‘strong sense of community at the school’, adding that pupils ‘feel safe and enjoy positive relationships with staff’. 

It also highlighted the positive relationships, ‘calm site’, strong curriculum and positive attitudes of pupils.

And they noted the ‘inclusivity’, ‘ambitious and knowledge-rich curriculum’, and ‘excellent extra-curricular provision including careers, music and the Jill Dando News Centre’.

Inspectors listed also that leaders are ‘relentless’ in ensuring that students receive the help and support they need.

High-flying School and Sixth Form

It was the first full inspection since TKASA entered special measures in 2017, when the school was taken on by The Priory Learning Trust. 

Since then it has seen their biggest students numbers in a generation, a huge £4 million-plus of investments, and the expansion of their thriving Sixth Form which has doubled in numbers.

In a wide-ranging positive report Ofsted inspectors highlighted a raft of positive attributes and achievements including:

  • There is a strong sense of community at this school. Pupils feel safe and enjoy positive relationships with staff.
  • Pupils celebrate difference and the school is inclusive. For example, the pride club is an important part of school life. There are many opportunities for pupils to participate in extra-curricular activities. Younger pupils can be music superstars or develop their skills as a journalist at the Jill Dando News Centre.
  • Students in the Sixth Form speak highly of their tutors and the support they receive from teachers across the curriculum.
  • There is an ambitious, knowledge-rich curriculum in place for all pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND).
  • Pupils with SEND are well supported. Teachers consider their needs in their curriculum planning.
  • The school site is calm. Pupils move between lessons purposefully. Routines are the bedrock of this positive culture. Staff are highly visible at all times of the school day. They model the respectful behaviours that are expected of pupils.
  • The effectiveness of governance has strengthened significantly. Governors are passionate about doing the best for pupils at the school. The academy council and the trust work together effectively to support leaders, but also hold them to account.
  • Staff are proud to work at this school. The trust motto of ‘cherish your staff’ is lived out in practice.
  • Leaders are relentless in ensuring that pupils receive the help and support they need.

For the full report click