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‘Inadequate’ Suffolk primary school to join academy trust

PUBLISHED: 08:04 03 August 2018 | UPDATED: 08:04 03 August 2018

Grange Community Primary School in Felixstowe, which is set to join the Orwell Multi-Academy Trust Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

Grange Community Primary School in Felixstowe, which is set to join the Orwell Multi-Academy Trust Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

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Bosses at a Suffolk school academy trust have said they are confident it can turn around the fortunes of a struggling primary.

Roger Fern said he was confident the school could deliver the improvements needed.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNRoger Fern said he was confident the school could deliver the improvements needed. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Grange Community Primary School in Felixstowe was inspected by Ofsted in December, where concerns were raised over the school’s capacity to improve and “weak outcomes” of pupils in some areas such as writing, prompting inspectors to rate it ‘inadequate’.

Now, it has emerged that the school is set to be sponsored by the Orwell Multi-Academy Trust, after the regional schools commissioner and headteacher board for the East of England approved the change.

It is expected to formally become a part of the trust on November 1.

Roger Fern, chairman of Orwell Multi-Academy Trust, said: “We were invited by the regional schools commissioner to become the sponsor, we had to look clearly at our own capacity and we decided we did have the capacity, and the school has the determination to move forward.

“There won’t be many changes that are outwardly visible – the uniform and name will stay the same – but they [parents] will see the curriculum outcomes and quality of teaching improved.”

Mr Fern added: “We met with parents in the summer term and we were quite clear that we were expecting significant improvement and we are confident that will happen.

“These children only come by once and if they are not getting the best we need to do something about it.”

The trust, formed in March 2017, currently runs five primary schools across the Ipswich area – Brooklands Community Primary, Handford Hall Primary, Halifax Primary, Springfield Infant and Willows Primary, with Grange Community Primary becoming the six.

A spokesman from Suffolk County Council confirmed it was expecting the conversion on November 1.

“Suffolk County Council continues to work with school leaders to ensure that pupils at Grange Community Primary School receive a good education,” the spokesman said.

“The improvements identified in the Ofsted report are being addressed by school leaders and a good start has been made ahead of the school joining the Orwell Multi-Academy Trust in November.”

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