Schools minister praises most improved state secondary school in country

Havant MP Alan Mak with schools minister Nick Gibb and Havant Academy pupils and principal Helen Cassady

Havant MP Alan Mak with schools minister Nick Gibb and Havant Academy pupils and principal Helen Cassady

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GOVERNMENT minister Nick Gibb visited the most improved school in the country – and gave it his seal of approval.

The Minister of State for Schools met pupils and teachers at Havant Academy as part of a visit to the town.

It is thought to be the most improved state secondary school in England over the last five years.

The school, which opened in 2010 – after previously being known as Staunton Community Sports College and before that Wakeford Comprehensive School – secured a ‘good’ grade following an Ofsted inspection last year, despite being named ‘inadequate’ after its first inspection in 2013.

Havant MP Alan Mak said that the school’s advances since joining the government’s academies programme are a blueprint for how schools can be transformed by ‘great leadership and hard work from staff and pupils’.

He said: ‘Backing local schools and young people is one of my top priorities as local MP.

‘Getting Nick Gibb to Havant so he could see first the hard work of local teachers and schools is great for the constituency.’

Helen Cassady, principal of Havant Academy, said: ‘The visit was very important to us as it recognised the fantastic journey we have been on as the most improved school in the country and the excellent results the class of 2016 achieved this year.’

Mr Gibb also met headteachers at a special meeting of the Havant Educational Leaders’ Forum.

Mr Gibb said: ‘It was great to hear first-hand how school leaders are working together through the Havant Education Leaders Forum to raise standards in schools across the area.

‘We want every child to have access to an excellent education and that means ensuring all schools have the resources they need to do this.’

Mr Gibb says that he is committed to introducing fairer funding for schools, so all pupils are ‘funded according to need’.

He added: ‘We are continuing to work closely with the education sector to understand their views and priorities for the formula and will bring forward proposals for full consultation later in the autumn.’

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