Quick action taken to improve Oakmeeds

Oakmeeds Community College, Burgess Hill
Oakmeeds Community College, Burgess Hill

The headteacher of a college in special measures has acted quickly to improve leadership, according to a new Ofsted monitoring report.

Oakmeeds Community College, Station Road, Burgess Hill, has received its first monitoring inspection since it was put into special measures by Ofsted in January.

The report revealed that since the last inspection a new deputy headteacher has been appointed after the departure of the last one and the headteacher from Millais, a school in Horsham, has been appointed to work at the college once a week to help the headteacher Colin Taylor.

It concluded that the college’s improvement plan was fir for purpose but that West Sussex County Council’s statement of action was not as it did not include sufficient detail about what will be evaluated.

The report stated: “The headteacher has acted quickly to improve leadership.

“He has accurately identified the main priorities for improvement and put the right actions in place to achieve them swiftly.

“The senior leadership team has been restructured and all leaders now have clear roles and responsibilities in making essential improvements.

“Students’ achievement is tracked more effectively and teachers have higher expectations of what students should achieve.

“The college has appropriate and detailed plans in place to secure rapid improvement. However, sometimes the targets in the plan lack sharpness and are not linked precisely enough to improvements in students’ progress.”

The report stated that teachers’ marking has improved and governors are passionate and enthusiastic. But it added that WSCC has not yet provided additional governors, which is now urgent.

Mr Taylor said: “I am very pleased with the comments from HMI/Ofsted as they show that we are clearly making progress and improvements are happening at the college as expected.

“The Governors and staff are fully committed to implementing the improvement plan, and have every confidence that with all the measures in place Oakmeeds will recover its “Good” rating by summer 2015.”

The college has been told it may not appoint newly qualified teachers before the next monitoring inspection.