Good Ofsted award boost for college

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Students, staff parents and governors celebrated after a seven-year journey of improvement culminated in the best ever inspection in their school’s history.

Ofsted inspectors ranked as ‘good’ Risedale Sports and Community College, at Hipswell, Catterick Garrison.

In 2008 the school was in special measures when it became part of the Northallerton and Catterick Schools Federation, with what is now Northallerton School and Sixth Form College.

A school spokesman said: “Since then leaders and governors have revamped and reinvigorated every aspect of school life with their strenuous efforts winning official recognition.”

Inspectors awarded Risedale the good rating across the board in the four key areas of leadership and management, the quality of teaching, learning and assessment, personal development, behaviour and welfare and outcomes for pupils.

The report stated that since the last inspection standards had risen sharply and pupils had made good progress.

The quality of teaching had improved and was now good with staff using information on pupils’ learning effectively to challenge them in their studies.

Attendance and literacy had improved and teachers’ targets were now clear and specific.

Associate principal John Kelly and executive principal Mick Hill were praised for working to drive standards and progress rates higher.

“Thus, the ethos and culture of the school is highly effective in securing good academic and personal outcomes for pupils,” the report stated.

Inspectors praised the support offered to students with special educational or health needs so their progress was similar to their peers.

About 40 per cent of the children come from military families leading to a high mobility of large numbers of students at any time during the academic year.

But inspectors stated that there was good quality provision for the large proportion of pupils of military families, with their needs being met emotionally and academically.

The report said: “Pupils have a very positive attitude to school. They are smart, diligent, punctual, and ready to learn. Behaviour is good. Pupils are well prepared for the next stage of their lives.

“Pupils say they are safe and know how to be safe both on-line and in their practical lessons. The overwhelming majority of parents and staff are positive about the quality of education the school provides.”

Mr Kelly said: “The past seven years have been an incredible journey and our staff, governors and students, with the support of their parents, thoroughly deserve this official endorsement of their efforts.

“A great deal of dedication, commitment and sheer hard work has gone into transforming the school, which is now blessed with a unique spirit that is second to none.”