BOSSES at Summerhill School have accepted the institution ‘requires improvement’ following its latest Ofsted inspection.

The Kingswinford secondary school has been given the below par grade after inspectors highlighted some key areas which were not up to scratch following visits on November 22 and 23 last year.

In the inspection report, which was published this week, the school was told it needs to improve its management, teaching quality, and pupil outcomes.

The report states: “Leaders have, in the past, not held teachers to account with sufficient rigour for the quality of their work. The information that leaders collect, about how well pupils do, currently does not allow accurate examination predictions to be made.

“Middle leaders have previously not monitored the quality of teaching sufficiently well. This has resulted in discrepancies between subjects.”

However, the school was praised for the personal development, behaviour and welfare of its pupils, with the report saying: “Pupils behave well. There is a culture of strong, positive relationships between pupils and adults, and among pupils, which supports learning well.”

To read the report in full, click here.

James Bowkett, who was appointed executive headteacher in October 2016, was also praised for acting “quickly and decisively” to identify and address aspects of the school which require improvement.

Mr Bowkett said the report outcome did not come as a surprise to himself or the school’s governors, and that plans had already been put in place to address the issues.

He said: “Summerhill School is a great community which I am very proud to have been asked to lead.

“When I arrived, it was clear that the foundations of a superb school were in place, however, also that there was work to be done since the performance of the school had not been as good as it should have been.

“We told the inspection team that we believed we ‘required improvement’ and they agreed with us.

“We were able to assure the lead inspector and the team that, from recent evaluation, we knew our school very well, had identified all issues that required improvement, and could already show the first signs of improvement.

“We are very pleased that Ofsted recognised the many positive aspects of Summerhill School, including the ‘good’ student behaviour, positive relationships, successful promotion of British values and especially that students feel safe in school.

“We are driving teaching and learning forwards rapidly, with immediate impact upon student performance, hand-in-hand with rewarding students for great attitude and attendance.

“We had already put plans in place to address the identified issues to very rapidly accelerate Summerhill, firstly towards its rightful place as the undoubted best school in the area, and then onwards beyond ‘outstanding’.”