Newmarket College is not making enough progress to get out of special measures.
The Exning Road school was judged ‘inadequate’ in February by government inspectors and following a second monitoring inspection last month, Ofsted inspector Ian Middleton said students’ achievement was still too low and serious weaknesses in teaching still remained.
He said although the school’s 2013 GCSE results in English and maths were better than in 2012 they were still behind the national average. “Too few students achieved good qualifications in both English and mathematics, leaving them inadequately prepared for the next stage of their education, training or employment,” said Mr Middleton.
Poor attendance was highlighted as a contributory factor. “Students fail to reach their targets, because they miss school at critical times,” he said and added the college’s actions to improve attendance, particularly in Years 10 and 11, “required significant improvement.”
Mr Middleton said teaching had improved since the first review in September after which all teachers had received feedback about the strengths and weaknesses of their work.
Restructuring of the college’s leadership, following the departure of former principal Bob Cadwalladr, and the link with Haverhill’s Samuel Ward Academy had been positive but the impact was “at an early stage”, according to Mr Middleton.
“The report has confirmed my assessment of the position of the college and the areas that need rapid improvement,” said the college’s interim head, Nick Froy. “We are being as transparent as possible in the process of improvement and will continue to keep parents and the community informed of developments during 2014.”