9 September 2018

As everyone knows we were disappointed with the Ofsted report (that is putting it mildly!).  Having been a "Good" school for a decade and with no changes to the fundamentals of the school we are absolutely determined to restore our status as quickly as possible.  Consistency was our main issue - we are good school which doesn't do good things all the time (to quote one of the Ofsted inspectors).  There is a temptation to have a "knee-jerk" reaction under these circumstances and this is something that I am absolutely determined to avoid.    We had a very positive School Improvement Conference one weekend at the end of June which generated hundreds of ideas and that, combined with the Ofsted report and the highly positive Inclusion Quality Mark report in July (https://www.waltonledale.lancs.sch.uk/about-us/inclusion) gives us an excellent basis for improvement this year.

I have gone back to basics and articulated what Walton-le-Dale stands for.  There is no change to the vision and ethos of the school (see https://www.waltonledale.lancs.sch.uk/about-us/vision-and-ethos) - we believe that education can change children's lives.  This image describes the fundamentals of our school - 

An action plan is linked to each of the 8 boxes, with a senior member of staff and a governor linked to each one.  The plans include the Ofsted actions (and I make no excuse for them being highlighted in red!) along with lots of ideas from the School Improvement Conference.  

I am exceptionally positive about the development of Walton-le-Dale.  Yes, we need to be more consistent; Yes - we need to absolutely prioritise continuing to improve teaching and learning; Yes - we can always be even more inclusive - but, at heart the school is a great place to be educated, along with being a great community to be part of. We are definitely travelling in the right direction.

I am, as always, more than happy to share detailed plans and discuss these issues in more depth with anyone.


James Harris





Posted by James Harris

Category: WLD Updates