THE defiant headteacher of a struggling high school has drawn on the positives after Government inspectors delivered a ‘must do better’ verdict.
An Ofsted team concluded Verdin High School in Winsford has not shown sufficient improvement during the past three years, and the school will now be subject to a special measures monitoring programme.
Inspectors claimed teaching and learning needed to improve generally, but said the best teaching was “rigorous, purposeful and conducted at a good pace”.
They also pointed to incidents of “over-boisterousness” among some students, and said behaviour needed to improve.
But the report did highlight “significant strengths” in the school, said Mr Howlett, “notably that present standards are showing signs of recovery”.
The inspectors praised the school’s care for its most vulnerable students and said staff were quick to deal with instances of bullying.
Mr Howlett said: “I am pleased the inspection has highlighted the strengths of the school. I am also convinced that, with the hard work and dedication of staff and students and the support of the community, standards of achievement will improve.
“The Ofsted team commented favourably on the breadth of opportunity the curriculum at Verdin offers, and noted that this was going some way to engage and enthuse young people in their learning.”
Lead inspector Stephen Wall noted the school was developing systems for monitoring the performance of students and using this data to tackle underachievement.
Last month Woodford Lodge High School, where Mr Howlett is also headteacher, highlighted many positives.
Winsford Sixth Form, which is split between the two schools, was deemed to have made satisfactory progress since its last inspection.