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Colne school warned to take 'immediate action'
1:00pm Sunday 11th May 2014 in Pendle
A COLNE school has been warned that it needs to take ‘immediate action’ to resolve problems with its governance.
Park Primary School, which was told that it requires improvement by Ofsted after an inspection in January, has been left ‘floundering like a rudderless ship’ according to a follow-up report by the education watchdog.
Ofsted inspector Joan Bonenfant, who re-visited the school in March, said senior leaders and governors ‘are not taking effective action’ to rectify issues.
But associate head teacher Julie Martin, drafted in from Chorley’s Westwood Primary School by Lancashire County Council, pledged that Ofsted inspectors would see ‘a massive difference’ when they return in the summer term.
Two head teachers have departed the Rutland Street school since 2012, while newly-appointed head, Sarah Midgley, has gone on maternity leave.
In her monitoring report, Ms Bonenfant said: “The comprehensive review of the governing body has revealed many weaknesses at the heart of governance.
“Governors are well-intentioned and have supported the school for many years. However, they have struggled to adapt to the increased responsibilities of governance and lead the school effectively, particularly given the many changes at headship level. “Governors are not sufficiently well-informed; furthermore, they lack the confidence required to hold the school to account. As a result, underperformance has been left unchallenged, leading to pupils’ continued underachievement.”
Mrs Martin said she had re-drafted an action plan for the school within one week of the criticism, which won praise from Ofsted.
She added: “I’m working closely with our one constant - Jill Greenwood, the deputy head - and have brought the chairman of governors, Ralph Latham, along to meetings to ensure that we have the same vision.
“It has been really hard work for staff with so much change but I’ve been observing lessons and I’m pleased that we are moving forward.”
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