Thursday, July 29, 2010

Moving from Gilberdyke’s ‘Outstanding’ School up to Howden School

Last week saw the emotional leaving assembly and parent’s tea for Gilberdyke School’s year 6 pupils as they said farewell to the outstanding Gilberdyke school.

(pictured are Gilberdyke year 6 pupils: Aaron Cook, Ashley Holt, Katy Robinson and Elliott Stone)

As a School Governor and Chair up until stepping down last year, I am immensely proud of what the School and parents have done in producing the well-rounded 11 year olds we see leaving the school, who without exception are a credit to the teachers and staff. The School can rightly be proud of its 'outstanding' status that it was given at the last OFSTED inspection.

The vast majority of Gilberdyke’s year 6 pupils are moving to Howden School and Technology College in September.

There are five other Schools in the cluster that feed into Howden School and Technology College. These schools at Newport, Eastrington, Bubwith, Barmby on the Marsh, and Howden Junior School should also be proud of their achievements in continuing to produce the high calibre pupils that will again enter the secondary School in September.

As a parent whose daughter is about to move from Gilberdyke to Howden School and Technology College, I attended the recent parents evening, where people were genuinely concerned about the school. Prior to the event a number commented on how shocked they were to find the School had fallen so far so as to be placed in special measures.

The new executive head Dave McCready and acting head Garry Garghan gave a very open and honest assessment as to where the school finds itself, but more importantly where the school needs to go and detailed the ‘blue print’ they were going to follow.

I was certainly impressed with what Mr McCready had to say, a man who came across as having the required management skills and knowing how to move the school forward, especially when he talked about the realities of the situation. He listened when parents talked about school discipline the lack of respect shown by pupils to teachers, and he talked about the importance of gathering the evidence as to where individual pupils were in their learning. Importantly he talked about how the issue of inadequate teaching was going to be tackled, and the weaknesses in the safeguarding policies and procedures, and the issues around care; guidance and the support to students were going to be addressed quickly.

I am confident that Howden School will turn around very quickly, and with the support of parents and all those connected with the School, those high calibre pupils entering year 7 from the Primary Schools will continue to achieve at the high levels we have seen in the Primary Schools.

1 comment:

Old boy said...

No doubt the parents of the new entrants (and the existing pupils too) will be keeping a close eye on their childrens progress. Perhaps the governors will be actively pursuing improvement monitoring of the school and trying to ensure the staff are of adequate calibre to achieve this ideal?
Our future is too important to allow dead wood to spread through the system.