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Abbey Woods Academy reaches milestone on road to improvement

Abbey Woods Academy has reached an important milestone on the school’s improvement journey after being removed from Special Measures by Ofsted following a two-day inspection on 23 and 24 May.

The Berinsfield-based primary school, part of CfBT Schools Trust (CST), became subject to Special Measures following its last full Ofsted inspection in May 2015. However, the latest report says those inadequacies have been eradicated thanks to the combined efforts of leaders and staff, and Abbey Woods has progressed to the Requires Improvement grade.  

The report recognises that while the school still has some way to go, leaders at Abbey Woods are realistic about the challenges that remain and there is a shared determination to succeed. Higher expectations of what pupils can achieve, underpinned by a strong sense of teamwork and mutual support, is motivating children at all levels to do their best and take pride in their work.

The report says: “Pupils are industrious and mostly work hard, which makes an important contribution to their accelerating progress. They usually feel well challenged, including the most able, and have positive attitudes towards learning from their mistakes. The quality of presentation in pupils’ written work, including disadvantaged pupils, has improved markedly. They take pride in what they produce.”

During their visit, inspectors found pupils’ increasingly positive attitudes evident in their respectful, friendly behaviour, and that their parents were overwhelmingly supportive of the school’s direction of travel, including recent improvements to site security.

Responding to Ofsted's findings, Headteacher Grant Mottram said: “The report clearly acknowledges how much has been done to improve the school, as well as the work required to move Abbey Woods on to ‘Good’. We are reassured by the fact that the report confirms our own judgements about our current performance, and what needs to be done to improve even further.”

Karen Walker, Regional Director for CST’s London and Thames Valley primary schools, said: “This is a wonderful achievement, and one of which everyone is rightly proud. A big ‘congratulations’ must go to Mr Mottram and his incredibly hard working staff, who strive tirelessly to make the school a better place for the children.”

CST Chief Executive Andy Yarrow said: “Our ambition is to create outstanding schools for all our pupils. The recent Ofsted inspection report confirms that Abbey Woods has taken a huge step forward towards this goal and I am deeply grateful to everyone who has supported the school on its journey so far. We look forward to even greater success ahead.”

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