A PORTSMOUTH school that has turned things around since becoming an academy has been ranked the second most improved in the country.
Charter Academy in Southsea saw 68 per cent of its students achieve the gold standard of five or more A*-C grades at GCSE including English and maths.
That’s a 44 per cent rise on the 24 per cent figure achieved in 2010.
The school opened in September 2009, after St Luke’s School was closed down due to a consistently poor run of results.
And since then the results have seen a sharp rise.
The school has been placed second in the 100 most improved state schools across the country.
Associate principal Mark Masters said: ‘We are ecstatic.
‘It’s a very exciting time for Charter Academy and the community which is in one of the most deprived areas of Portsmouth.
‘It shows what children from poor backgrounds can achieve with the right quality of teaching and the right drive and ambition for success.’
Mr Masters said the success has come from improvements in behaviour, better teaching and staffing changes.
Dame Sharon Hollows was brought in as principal when the academy opened.
‘There is a real strength in the pastoral system here which means we have outstanding systems to improve punctuality and attendance,’ Mr Masters added.
‘We focus on students’ engagement in class.
‘We don’t accept the fact that students with low baselines can’t reach the gold standard.
‘We want students to come out of school ready for the world of work.
‘We want students to embrace university as a choice for lifelong learning.’
The school is expanding this year, with a sixth form due to open in September.
And Mr Masters said there is a bright future ahead.
‘We intend to strive to improve our results long term,’ he said.
‘That will prove extremely challenging but we work from day to day together to do the best for the children.
‘It’s been a huge boost for staff morale to demonstrate what can be done. It’s inspired the staff.’