Inspectors rule Wisbech school is improving ‘slowly but steadily’

SATISFACTORY progress is being made at Thomas Clarkson Community College with standards rising “slowly but steadily”, according to government inspectors.

Ofsted inspectors monitored the Wisbech school last month to check on progress after September’s inspection - which identified students’ attainment, behaviour and attendance as areas for improvement.

They found that, after changes to staff levels, the situation was “stablizing” and the leadership team had been strengthened. Behaviour was found to be satisfactory and exclusions had fallen.

In a letter to the school’s principal Maureen Strudwick, Inspector Elaine Taylor wrote: “Standards are rising slowly but steadily. The school is building on the improvements in examination results noted at the last inspection.”

Mrs Taylor observed “generally orderly behaviour at break time and between lessons” but highlighted punctuality and persistent absence as areas for further improvement. Inspectors found that increasing numbers of students in Years 9 and 10 were meeting challenging targets but results in Year 11 were “likely to show only a modest improvement in GCSE examinations this year, with 28 per cent predicted to gain five or more passes at Grade C or above including English and maths”.

The greatest improvement was in the progress of students with special educational needs and disabilities, as well as those who speak English as an additional language.

Mrs Taylor praised good staff morale and an “increased willingness of students to help change the climate for learning”.

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She wrote: “The determination of the principal and the vision she has successfully shared with the whole school community are effectively creating a culture where success is celebrated and expectations are raised.”