Yesterday afternoon I met with the Head Teacher of The Sholing Technology College Martin Brown, and the Deputy Head Teacher Suzanne Ashley. We discussed the Ofsted report in detail and the actions being taken by the school to take them out of special measures.
Martin Brown made it clear that he is completely open with parents about what this inspection means and how he will move the school forward. Parents who have contacted him have all been offered the opportunity to discuss their concerns personally and of course meetings have been organised with parents on Monday and Tuesday next week.
I asked for an explanation about the safeguarding concerns and I am reassured that this has been key on the Head Teacher’s agenda from when he arrived in September 2014. The concerns identified by the Inspection all pre-date the arrival of Mr Brown.
As has been reported, the school has challenged the accuracy of this report. However, while they do not agree with the findings, they have put in place an extensive action plan to address all the findings.
It is clearly vital that oversight on the School and Leadership is considerable in the coming months. With this in mind I spoke with Kim Drake who is responsible for schools on Southampton City Council and they are producing a city action plan to address the issues identified. In addition to this, I spoke with the Cabinet Member for Education Darren Paffey who is also working very closely with the school.
The next Ofsted inspection will be in October and this will consider carefully whether the school and the school leadership have made the changes required.
I have made it clear that the school needs to demonstrate to all parents, pupils and the local community that the school is improving and it will be a recognised as a good school with high aspirations for all pupils very soon.
If you are a parent, the meetings are being held at the school at 5:30pm on Monday 18th July for Year 6s. 5:30pm on Tuesday 19th July for Years 7, 8 and 9, and at 7pm for Year 10. If you would like to attend please email the school at firstname.lastname@example.org.