Clacton school achieves first ‘good’ Ofsted since it was founded

Pupils and head teacher Tracey Hemming at Clacton Coastal Academy celebrate achieving their first go

Pupils and head teacher Tracey Hemming at Clacton Coastal Academy celebrate achieving their first good Ofsted since it was formed out of two schools. - Credit: Su Anderson

An Essex secondary school has achieved a “good” rating from Ofsted for the first time since it was founded.

The Clacton Coastal Academy (CCA) was formed in 2009 from two failing predecessor schools in a bid to turn them around.

Now, following a visit by inspectors last month, the school has been rated good in all areas with capacity to improve further.

Although results are still below the national average they are “rising rapidly” and inspectors added that principal Tracey Hemming “has provided inspirational leadership that has raised both aspirations and achievement at the academy”.

Ms Hemming said: “We are part way through a journey the academy which has been ongoing since it began, and we are on an upward trajectory. This is not a sticking plaster this is robust improvement.

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“The feedback from the inspectors at our final meeting was that the school has the capacity to become outstanding, and the message was ‘don’t stop doing what you’re doing’.

“It means students are guaranteed a good education and this is highly promising for the future of Clacton – a generation of students will have good schools and the chance to go onto further education.

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“It is very much about a whole school ethos, the CCA way, which is about inspiring and motivating and all the teachers and students are very much on board.”

The report said the quality of teaching was good and still improving, and the quality of the school’s sixth form was also praised.

Students progress well, even those from disadvantaged backgrounds or special educational needs.

Stephen Chamberlain, former principal and director of education at the Academies Enterprise Trust (AET) which sponsors the school, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the inspection that clearly recognises the inspirational leadership of Mrs Hemming and the senior leaders, middle leaders, governors and all the staff in achieving fantastic outcomes for the students.

“I have worked with CCA since it became and academy in 2009 and and it is a privilege to have been engaged in the incredible educational transformation that has occurred in one of the most deprived areas in the country.”

He added that across the region schools run by AET were improving.

Ms Hemming added: “We are very grateful for the support of AET and in particular Mr Chamberlain for the incredible groundwork he put in place in order for CCA to achieve this.”

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