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School told to improve just three years ago now rated 'good'

Sandwell | News | Published:

An academy which was ordered to improve by Ofsted three years ago has turned around its fortunes to be rated as 'good'.

Staff at Ormiston Forge Academy in Cradley Heath have been praised for driving up standards.

Inspectors said there had been 'rapid' progress at the school, which has 1,274 students on the role, since the last inspection in November 2013 when it was rated as 'requires improvement'.

As well as grading the academy as 'good overall, Ofsted has rated it 'good' in every category it was inspected – including sixth form; personal development, pupil outcomes, quality of teaching and effectiveness of leadership and management.

Steps taken to make improvements included organising effective training for teachers that has helped them to develop and improve, regularly checks on pupils' progress in lessons and providing disadvantaged students with more support.

GCSE results have improved in each of the last three years and A level students recorded 63 A* grades with 63 per cent of students achieving five A* to C grades last year.

The report, following the inspection which took place on March 22 and 23, says: "The school has made significant improvements since the last inspection and pupils are now making good progress across a range of subjects.

"The governing body and multi-academy trust know the school well and have played a key role in improving standards.

"The principal and his senior leadership team have worked tirelessly to

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improve the quality of education that is provided for pupils."

It adds: "Pupils and learners across the school speak enthusiastically about their experience of attending school and of the opportunities they are provided with.

"Pupils behave in a mature and responsible way. They enjoy positive relationships with each other and with school staff.

"Extra-curricular opportunities are varied and there is a strong take-up of these by pupils. Pupils spoke warmly of the popular house competition which includes many sporting and academic competitions.

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"The school is particularly proud of its work in promoting enterprise."

Principal Andrew Burns said: "This wonderful achievement reflects all the hard work and dedication of so many people. This has been a real team effort, from the students, the staff and our governors. I am so proud of my students, who are focused, resilient and positive and proved to the inspection team that we do not put a show on, we are good all day, every day.

"Next step - outstanding. I know how close we are to this and we are already committed to this journey."

Chairman of Governors Stephen Rayner added: "The governors are delighted that the Ofsted inspection team has recognised the progress that our academy has made.

"We know how committed our staff are to the learning and well-being of the young people in our care. Above all we are proud of our students who, as the report states, are mature, confident learners developing as responsible members of the wider community."

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