Joy as Meeching Valley School in Newhaven comes out of special measures

Head teacher Davina Wakelin with some of the pupils.
Head teacher Davina Wakelin with some of the pupils.

A school which was in special measures was delighted to announced that it has improved.

Meeching Valley School in Newhaven said Ofsted had now placed it in the ‘requires improvement’ category following an inspection visit.

The education watchdog has four grades for schools: outstanding, good, requires improvement and inadequate.

Head teacher Davina Wakelin said: “We are delighted that Meeching Valley is out of special measures.

“It has been a long journey and a lot of hard work, however, we must continue to drive forward and raise standards to make Meeching Valley an outstanding school.

“These are exciting times and by continuing to work together we will become outstanding.”

Ofsted released its findings last week but carried out the inspection from March 5 to March 6.

It judged the school to be in the third category - requires improvement - in all areas assessed which include: achievement of pupils, quality of teaching, behaviour and safety of pupils and leadership and management.

The school in Valley Road went into special measures two years ago when it was judged to be inadequate by Ofsted. Since then it has been working hard to turn its fortunes around.

The Ofsted inspector said the head teacher, Mrs Wakelin, had put in place a range of measures to improve pupils’ learning, behaviour and attendance and the curriculum.

As a result it said these areas were improving more rapidly.

The report said the governing body was well informed, asks leaders challenging questions and held the school to account more effectively.

It added the consistent management of pupils’ behaviour has improved pupils’ personal development and attitudes to learning, saying most pupils enjoyed the incentives to help them behave well and attend regularly.

However the report also highlighted areas where the school could improve further.

It said there was too much variation in the quality of the teaching and not enough teaching which was consistently good or outstanding.

Ofsted added all pupils did not make consistently good progress, so pupils’ achievement over time had been erratic.

As a result pupils had gaps in their knowledge and were still catching up to where they should be, the report said.

It pointed towards the behaviour of a small minority of pupils and some bullying meant that behaviour required improvement, while attendance was below the national average.