Special measures primary school may be second in Radcliffe to become academy

Bury Times: Gorsefield Primary School in Radcliffe. Picture from Google Maps. Gorsefield Primary School in Radcliffe. Picture from Google Maps.

A DAMNING Ofsted report could see a second primary school in Radcliffe become a sponsored academy.

Gorsefield Primary School in Robertson Street has been placed in special measures after government education watchdogs inspected the establishment last November.

Pupil achievement, quality of teaching and leadership and management were judged to be “inadequate” with behaviour and safety “requiring improvement”.

The Radcliffe Times understands the Department for Education is now considering changing the school into an academy.

The Ofsted report stated that pupils’ academic achievement is inadequate with progress slow and reading, writing and maths skills too low.

Inspectors also found there was a lack of engaging teaching and guided marking — resulting in negative attitudes and behaviour from pupils.

The headteacher and governors did not do enough to address “stubbornly low” standards since the last inspection in September, 2010, the report stated.

But following the 2010 inspection, Ofsted had judged Gorsefield Primary to be “good” with outstanding features.

A statement from the school said its “dismayed” governing body had submitted a formal complaint against the judgement and requested an accuracy check.

It added: “Just three years ago, Ofsted said Gorsefield was a good school on the brink of being outstanding.

“Now they say we are inadequate despite the lead inspector stating the school has moved forward since the last inspection and a lot of hard work has gone on.

“The public can rest assured that we are fully committed to making improvements where necessary.

"Gorsefield is a happy, inclusive, learning community, strongly supported by parents and with highly motivated caring staff who want the best for the children.”

Gorsefield Primary met government floor targets last year and take on a much higher number than average of children with special educational needs and disabilities.

A local authority check last October recorded no inadequate teaching there.

Cllr Gill Campbell, cabinet member for children and families, said: “Bury Council are strongly against any of our schools being forced to become academies.”

Radcliffe Primary School in Coronation Road reopened as an academy last month sponsored by Bury College.

Despite protests from parents of children at Elton Primary in Bury, earlier this month governors accepted controversial plans to turn the school into an academy. 

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