Headteacher vows to make changes to improve Gosport school

CHALLENGE From left, Mai Ann Laverton, Reilley Johnston, Amber Pyne, Amy Cooper, Jordan Green, Kim Thackray, Dylan Sprigg and Chris Cooledge with Bridgemary School headteacher Kim Thackray. Picture: Allan Hutchings (133542-417)
CHALLENGE From left, Mai Ann Laverton, Reilley Johnston, Amber Pyne, Amy Cooper, Jordan Green, Kim Thackray, Dylan Sprigg and Chris Cooledge with Bridgemary School headteacher Kim Thackray. Picture: Allan Hutchings (133542-417)
Teachers and pupils at Penhale Infant School and Nursery in Fratton are overjoyed with their latest Ofsted
inspection Picture: Annie Lewis

School celebrates after being named ‘good’ once more

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THE new headteacher of a struggling Gosport school has said she is confident of turning things around.

Bridgemary School was judged as having serious weaknesses in April.

Kim Thackray joined the school at the beginning of November and just days later Ofsted inspectors visited for a monitoring inspection.

The report said the school is not yet making enough progress towards leaving the ‘serious weakness’ category.

But Mrs Thackray remains optimistic that things can change at the school.

‘The inspection team when they came here hadn’t seen any progress since the last time they walked through the door,’ she said.

‘But when they arrived I hadn’t been in the post long enough for progress to be made.

‘Not only would they now see the focus and the drive I have given and the clear direction with teaching and learning, but they would see 
a clear focus on closing the gap.

‘That’s about identifying who is underachieving. It’s about equipping your staff with the skills to do that.

‘My focus for next term will be making sure that all the children make the progress they are expected to.’

But the inspectors did praise the school for its focus on improving behaviour and attendance.

The science curriculum has also been reorganised which has ensured that most students will now be entered for GCSE exams.

However, inspectors did say the quality of teaching and learning remains weak and fragile, and too much is inadequate.

‘The progress of the children is paramount because unless you get progress, you won’t get results,’ added Mrs Thackray.

‘That’s my focus for this term.

‘The school will also be putting a huge focus on literacy. We want to drive it across the curriculum and make sure it’s in every lesson.’

And Mrs Thackray added she feels the future is bright for the school.

‘We have got a very clear action plan.

‘I’m really confident. My vision is that we will be able to move it forward.

‘This community deserves a good school. The children have the right to a good education.

‘It’s something that they have with them all the time.

‘It’s absolutely key for this community to have a good school so the faster we can move this, the better.’