Longendale Celebrates Ofsted Improvement
Friday 29th January 2016 14:49 Hyde News Posted by Tom Greggan

Longdendale High School is celebrating a fantastic Ofsted report that reflects the significant improvements made in the school.

Inspectors visited the school in November 2015 and judged the school to be ‘Good with Outstanding features’.

Matthew Bowler, Headteacher, said: “It is a judgement that we were expecting considering the excellent results the students achieved this year.”

Longdendale High School achieved 67 per cent A-C including English and maths. Twenty of the subjects including English, maths and science were above the national average.

Leadership

In the report, the leadership was judged to be outstanding and it was recognised that the school was still rapidly improving.

“Outstanding leadership has propelled this school forward since the previous inspection, resulting in rapid improvement to standards, teaching and students’ behaviour. There has been a concerted and unrelenting focus on improving outcomes for students,” the report stated.

Mr Bowler said: “It is fantastic for the hard work of the staff, especially those in leadership positions to have been recognised for their unswerving determination to improve the school and the life chances of all our students.”

A key success highlighted in the report was the school culture and ethos of ASPIRE.

The report added: “Students spoke proudly and freely to inspectors of their core values: achievement, success, professionalism, integrity, respect and endeavour. The integration of such values into the life of the school has been a defining feature in securing improvement.”

Mr Bowler said: “We have worked hard to create a culture that develops and celebrates the whole child.
“Teaching and learning is at the heart of everything that we do, but we are also developing citizens of the future, not just teaching students to pass exams.”

Teaching

The report also made clear the huge impact that consistently good quality teaching has had on student outcomes.

“Teachers have good subject knowledge and high expectations of what students can achieve and students make good progress in most subjects and do outstandingly well in English,” the report reads.

The inspectors were also impressed with the strength and depth of the school’s curriculum and praised the – “aspirational culture – it is well suited to students’ needs and abilities and sets them up well for the next stages in their lives. It allows them to consider a host of possibilities for further education or job opportunities.”

The headteacher commented: “It is testament to the ongoing dedication, hard work and skill of all of our staff who work relentlessly to provide our young people with the highest quality experiences and opportunities.”

This grading of good with outstanding features is a significant achievement considering that in 2010 when Mr Bowler took over as Headteacher, the average results over the previous eight years had been 44 per cent 5A-C including English and maths, none off the GCSE subjects were above national average, and the school’s attendance was on 88 per cent.

“It became very clear in the first few weeks that I had been appointed that significant change had to take place to ensure that all pupils were given the best opportunity to be successful,” said Mr Bowler.
“It has been a hard fought journey and one that I am still committed to.

“Sixty-seven per cent of students achieving key measures is very good, but there is still room for improvement.

“The shared vision for the school is to quickly secure outstanding outcomes for all students; the report acknowledges that we are still moving rapidly towards this,” he added.

The report states: “School leaders are self-critical and open to new ideas. They have a very accurate view of the school’s strengths and weaknesses. Consequently, plans for further improvement are sharply focused on the correct priorities.’

To read the report in full you can visit the school website, www.longdendale.tameside.sch.uk