Ofsted Praise for Tower Hamlets Schools

Recent government figures show that Tower Hamlets schools are ranked in the top twenty of all London boroughs for GCSE attainment, and the majority have received glowing praise this year from Ofsted - the official body for inspecting schools.


According to the 2011/12 report released by Ofsted, seventy three per cent of children in Tower Hamlets attend a ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ primary school, beating the national average of sixty eight per cent.  However, locally collated data shows that Tower Hamlets schools have improved even further.  As of 29 January 2013, 81% of all primary and nursery schools have been rated “good” or “outstanding” in Tower Hamlets.


Alice Model Nursery School, Spitalfields, received ‘outstanding’ judgments for all of Ofsted’s criteria at their last inspection. The achievement of pupils, quality of teaching, behaviour and safety of pupils, and management of the school were all recognised as being exceptional. Ofsted said: ‘Children thrive in this exciting, welcoming and supportive atmosphere. Staff are skilled in engaging children in conversation, developing their spoken language skills and stimulating their curiosity. Children’s behaviour and safety are exemplary in school and out on their many trips.’


Christchurch School, Spitalfield’s, recently received praise and a ‘good’ overall judgement from Ofsted, as a result of year-on-year improvements in pupils’ achievement over the last three years. Ofsted said, ‘children get off to a good start in Nursery and Reception because they are cared for very well and develop a wide range of skills, and pupils make good progress in reading and writing and outstanding progress in maths’ at Christchurch.


Mowlem School, Bethnal Green, also received a ‘good’ rating. Ofsted said: ‘All groups of pupils, including disabled pupils and those with special educational needs, those known to be eligible for free school meals, and those eligible for additional funding, achieve well.’


Holy Family Catholic Primary School, near Poplar, improved on their previous Ofsted inspection to achieve a ‘good’ rating too. Ofsted said, ‘Teaching is typically good with examples of outstanding practice. Attendance has improved and is now higher than average. Parents and carers are very supportive of the school. One said the school had not only helped her child but her own parenting skills too.’


‘Highly effective leadership’ and ‘outstanding behaviour’ among pupils were just two of the factors behind Ben Johnson School’s ‘good’ Ofsted rating this time around. With pupil attainment now at the same level as the national average, the school has continued to make steady progress since its last inspection and this year was graded as ‘outstanding’ in some areas.


Children and young people across the borough are enjoying some of the best learning environments in the country. By 2015, the multi-million pound ‘Building Schools for the Future’ (BSF) programme will have benefited over 11,000 Tower Hamlets pupils during some of their most important educational years. Stepney Green School, which will receive BSF investment over the next few years, was recently recognised as ‘outstanding’ for its delivery of Science. Ofsted said: ‘The high demand, depth and breadth of science knowledge and understanding demanded of students is driving their above average attainment. Students are expected to do more and learn more than the minimum required by a syllabus.’


Tower Hamlets Mayor, Lutfur Rahman, said: ‘Education is a key priority in Tower Hamlets. We have invested in our schools with the Building Schools for the Future programme; we have invested in our young people’s career opportunities with the Mayor’s Aim Higher Programme, and we have supported young people financially with the Mayor’s Education Award grant.  This framework provides a platform to support the fantastic work that teachers, pupils, parents and council officers are doing, which has earned such positive recognition from Ofsted’.


Cllr Oliur Rahman, Cabinet member for Children, Schools and Families said: ‘Our schools are providing an excellent level of education for our children and young people. We know that a good education can provide the foundations for a successful career and excellent career opportunities. That is why we are committed to making education an on-going priority in Tower Hamlets’.       


For more information about schools in Tower Hamlets visit www.towerhamlets.gov.uk


January 31, 2013