I have finally found a place where the words 'community school' still exist

Fiona Millar's picture
It is here in the list published by the Guardian of schools in deprived areas rated "outstanding " by Ofsted. Look at the column which registers school type and see the impressive number of community schools - many of which are still doing a great job in their communities, in spite of the government's attempts to sideline and ignore them in favour of academies and free schools.
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Janet Downs's picture
Thu, 24/11/2011 - 10:57

According to the Government, only academies and free schools provide high quality education. These "shock troops" are supposed to "smash" the complacency of non-academies, according to Mr Cameron. But Ofsted has identified community schools which are doing an excellent job in difficult circumstances. It will be interesting to see if the Government pays tribute to these schools. I suspect not, since the publicity surrounding Ofsted's annual report is negative (see below) and most of the schools are not academies.

However, the chief inspector of schools Miriam Rosen did pay tribute to the London Challenge, the school improvement programme set up by the last government. She said it had provided "effective support" for schools in the capital. The Education Endowment Fund (EEF) in its report on "below-floor" schools found that there were fewer of these schools in London than elsewhere. It concluded that this was partly because of interventions such as the London Challenge. It is important, therefore, that lessons learnt from the London Challenge are spread more widely and similar support offered outside the capital.



Adrian Elliott's picture
Thu, 24/11/2011 - 12:28

There is also,of course the unfailingly negative coverage of HMCI's annual report in which the press cherry pick the critical comments and totally ignore the positive ones.

But this has been going for years and I find it increasingly difficult to take much notice of it -especially when you read about how some of the same newspapers dealt with the McCanns, for example.

Adrian Elliott's picture
Fri, 25/11/2011 - 09:54

After my,perhaps rat,her jaundiced comment yesterday, it is good to hear that others feel strongly and are prepared to take notice . See the letter below in today's Guardian from Professor Michael Bassey.

'Many Guardian readers, skimming the headlines, will read the heading "Nearly 800 schools stuck and failing to improve" and think, "Oh dear, another failing of the public sector."

Yet anyone reading to the end of the report will read: "Overall, the watchdog [Ofsted] found that 20% of schools in England were outstanding, 50% were good, 28% satisfactory and 2% inadequate."

Is it too much to expect a headline like "70% of schools in England good or outstanding"; or if the negative is needed to sell newspapers: "Only 2% of schools in England found to be inadequate, says Ofsted"? In a troubled world, the schools of England are one of our real successes'.

Emeritus professor Michael Bassey
Newark, Nottinghamshire

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