High number of ‘serious behaviour incidents’ and exclusions at school ranked inadequate
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A school for vulnerable youngsters where a high number of pupils are excluded or involved in 'serious behaviour incidents' has been slammed by Ofsted inspectors.
The Everitt Academy in Carlton Colville near Lowestoft was rated inadequate across the board following an inspection in September.
It teaches around 50 pupils with social, emotional and mental health needs, all of whom have an education, health and care plan (EHCP).
The inspection report said school leaders' and staff's "common desire to do the very best for all pupils" was not being realised. It criticised the school's sponsoring trust, Catch 22, for failing to act to stem the decline - although it was now said to be taking steps to rectify problems.
The trust said it acknowledged the concerns in the report but that improvement plans were being implemented.
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Ofsted inspectors said there had been a high number of "serious behaviour incidents" at the school over the past year, with physical restraint needed frequently, and a high number of exclusions.
Attendance was said to be too low, with too many pupils on poorly planned part-time timetables and some not coming to school at all.
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New curriculum plans have been introduced to broaden the range of subjects students are taught, but inspectors said these were poorly structured.
However, pupils told inspectors that since acting headteacher Alan Waldron had been in post behaviour had improved, and while there was still some name-calling and bullying, adults helped to sort out disputes.
The report said Mr Waldron had "given staff a renewed sense of purpose and direction" and begun to address weaknesses at the school, for example with a new behaviour policy which has started to bring down the number of serious incidents and exclusions. It also said staff had more confidence and better support.
Jane Reed, Catch 22 education chief executive, said: "We acknowledge the concerns raised following our inspection but are pleased that Ofsted recognised the significant improvements our new leadership has had.
"While we know we still have significant progress to make, through the steps we've already taken and our plans for further improvements, we are confident in the school's capacity to improve at pace."