Northgate High School praised for work in helping disadvantaged pupils following Ofsted report

Northgate high School, and inset, head teacher David Hutton

Northgate high School, and inset, head teacher David Hutton - Credit: Archant

Northgate High School in Ipswich has been praised for its efforts in the attainment of disadvantaged pupils.

David Hutton, headteacher of Northgate High School.

David Hutton, headteacher of Northgate High School. - Credit: Contributed

The school was recently visited by Ofsted inspectors as part of a nationwide assessment of disadvantaged pupils in schools.

The report highlighted that the progress gap between disadvantaged students and the rest of the school had been narrowed in Year 10 and 11 from the previous year, while in Years 7 and 8 it was recognised that there was no gap in attainment.

The report said: “Leaders at all levels, including governors, are knowledgeable about the school’s academic performance, and their self-evaluation of the school’s work is accurate.

“They responded promptly when the gap in students and their peers widened in 2014, after a period of improvement.”

Among some of the strengths highlighted in the report, were the school’s effective communication with parents, the attainment in Years 7 and 8 and the raising of aspirations in the sixth form to help students onto higher education.

The transition from primary to secondary school was also recognised by inspectors. The report added: “School leaders have devised effective systems to aid the transition of disadvantaged students from primary to secondary school.

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“Close liaison with teachers of Year 6 pupils in feeder primary schools ensures that staff in this school have detailed information on the strengths and needs of disadvantaged students who join the school in the September of Year 7.”

However, Ofsted inspectors had highlighted that more work was needed on improving attendance of disadvantaged students, and making continued efforts to evaluate pupils’ work in order to continue the school’s improvement.

Headteacher David Hutton said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to show Ofsted the good work that has been taking place at the school, and share with them the very pleasing internal data that illustrates the positive impact on current pupils and students at the school.”

Paul Mooney, chairman of the governors, added: “I think the report is very thorough and recognises fully the enormous efforts that Northgate continues to make to maximise the progress of disadvantaged pupils.

“The governing body is delighted that this visit by Ofsted has validated the strategies being implemented by the head and his team.”

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