Cambs Schools - The Good & Could Do Better...

The Government's schools watchdog - Ofsted - says it's a big range of experiences children in Cambridgeshire have when getting a good education.

Tens of thousands more teenagers are attending failing state secondary schools, Sir Michael Wilshaw, the Head of Ofsted's warning, raising concerns that standards are stagnating.

The proportion of secondaries rated as inadequate has risen in the last 12 months, with over 50 more schools now in special measures than a year ago, according to the Ofsted boss.

In his third annual report, published today, Sir Michael says while primary schools in England continue to forge ahead, the rate of improvement in secondary education is grinding to a halt, with the overall proportion rated good or outstanding remaining the same as last year.

The Government insisted there have been "incredible" improvements in secondary schools in recent years which should be recognised.

So - how are we faring here?

Here's a breakdown by local education authority of the percentage of our children going to good or outstanding PRIMARY schools (brackets are the change from last year).

  • Peterborough 80% (up 20pts)
  • Cambridgeshire 76% (up 9pts)

Here's a breakdown by local education authority of the percentage of our children going to good or outstanding SECONDARY or ACADEMY schools (brackets are the change from last year).

  • Peterborough 68% (up 14pts)
  • Cambridgeshire 56% (down 23pts)

OfSTED's annual report for the east of England has been welcomed by Members and officers at Cambridgeshire County Council.

The report - by Her Majesty's Chief Inspector - highlights the success of children's services in Cambridgeshire, improvements in Early Years education and the rising percentage of the county's primary schools judged to be good or outstanding.

However, the report draws attention to the fact that although Key Stage 2 performance has improved, reversing last year's decline, it is still below the level seen nationally and there is much more to do.

The County Council has written a new School Improvement Strategy that has recently been agreed by its Children and Young People Committee. The Council is working hard with schools to bring about even more rapid improvement this year.

The report comments that despite being a relatively affluent region, the East of England serves children from low-income families badly. Cambridgeshire's performance at KS2 and KS4 reflects this comment, with achievement for children eligible for Free School Meals too low and the gap between these children and high-income families too wide. 

The local authority has therefore implemented its Accelerating the Achievement of Vulnerable Groups Strategy, which contains a wide range of actions to address this issue. The performance of these children at KS2 has already started to improve.

The report notes that Cambridgeshire has the lowest percentage of secondary schools that are good or outstanding in the region. All but one of the county's secondary schools are academies, and while the County Council has no powers of intervention, officers are working hard with the schools, the Regional Commissioner for Academies and Free Schools and OfSTED to reverse this decline.

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