We’ll climb out of poor rating, pledges head

OFSTED   28/11/11 (AN)''Denmead Junior School look forward to their forthcoming Ofsted report. Headteacher Jacqui Bradshaw with (left to right), back), Joseph Griffiths (10), Molly Kirk (eight), Amelia Hobbs (nine) with front (left to right), Spencer Luff (eight), with Infant School pupils  Alfie Yates (six), Annabelle Connell (six), and Layla Bowls (five).'Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (114206-1)

OFSTED 28/11/11 (AN)''Denmead Junior School look forward to their forthcoming Ofsted report. Headteacher Jacqui Bradshaw with (left to right), back), Joseph Griffiths (10), Molly Kirk (eight), Amelia Hobbs (nine) with front (left to right), Spencer Luff (eight), with Infant School pupils Alfie Yates (six), Annabelle Connell (six), and Layla Bowls (five).'Picture: Ian Hargreaves (114206-1)

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THE headteacher of a school given a poor rating by inspectors hopes linking up with a top-performing neighbour can help improve standards.

Denmead Juniors was given a notice to improve after inspectors visited this term.

The visit came just four weeks after it joined with Denmead Infants, which has an outstanding rating.

Jacqui Bradshaw, the newly-appointed executive head of both schools – who was previously in charge of the infants – is determined to pull the junior school out of the poor category within a year.

She said: ‘I’m very aspirational for the children of Denmead, I want them to do as well as they possibly can. We have delightful children here and parents who are incredibly supportive. In spite of the Ofsted inspection there’s great morale and everyone’s feeling really positive.’

At Denmead Juniors, youngsters perform well in their exams. This summer, 88 per cent of school leavers achieved target levels in English and 79 per cent in maths.

But there was strong criticism in the report of a lack of targeted teaching and a failure to push pupils to make good progress, especially in maths.

Mrs Bradshaw, who turned around the fortunes of the infants school when it was deemed unsatisfactory by Ofsted in 2001, said: ‘At the moment we’re getting extensive support from Hampshire County Council with advisory teachers and specialists in English and maths.

‘We are also developing partnerships with other schools that have strengths to share and we have put in rigorous tracking systems so we know where every individual pupil is.

‘We need to make sure we push all our pupils, even the most able.

‘And the federation will help boost that. We’ve already created opportunities for teachers to work across both schools and share their expertise.’

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