Friarage School vows to make rapid progress after Ofsted calls it 'inadequate'

Friarage School in Scarborough
Friarage School in Scarborough

Staff at a Scarborough primary school deemed ‘inadequate’ by Ofsted say they are confident they can make “rapid improvements”.

Inspectors visited Friarage school, which has more than 350 pupils, over two days in October and published their findings just before Christmas, giving it the lowest rating possible.

Headteacher Cheryl Cappleman said: “We are now ensuring that actions to address issues raised in the report are being put into place promptly.

“We believe Friarage School is more than capable of making rapid improvements so that Ofsted will judge the school very differently at the next inspection. Our children are special and deserve nothing but the best.”

The report says:

○ Over time, leaders, including governors, have failed to halt the steep decline in the quality of education the school provides.

○ Leaders have been too slow to secure improvement. They do not monitor the school’s work closely enough. Their actions have not had sufficient impact to accelerate pupils’ progress.

○ Standards attained by pupils at the end of key stage 2 for reading and mathematics have been significantly below average for several years and show little sign of improvement.

○ Too often, teachers’ expectations of what pupils can achieve are too low.

○ Leaders have not planned an effective curriculum to ensure that pupils acquire the necessary knowledge and skills in subjects such as history and science.

The three inspectors did find some positives during their two days at the school, including the children’s behaviour and attendance levels.

Judith Kirk, North Yorkshire’s assistant director for education and skills, said: “We had been supporting Friarage Primary School to bring about improvements in teaching and learning prior to the Ofsted inspection, and had worked with educational partners and a national support school to provide additional management capacity in the school.

“This work was beginning to bring about change in the school but was too soon to have an impact on the Ofsted judgement.

“Since the inspection this intensive support has continued through an action plan including the coaching and training of staff to improve outcomes for children.

“Our priority is for all our children to attend a good or outstanding school and we will continue to support Friarage primary and its children, families and staff to ensure progress is rapid and secure.”