Colyton Primary School parents don’t share Ofsted’s view that it is ‘inadequate’ – and oppose forced academisation. I am supporting them and have written to the Regional Schools Commissioner

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Ofsted has published a report on Colyton Primary School and has graded it ‘inadequate’, ‘particularly for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND)’, although other significant failings were also identified.

I attended a meeting of 70 parents at the school last week, addressed by a representative of the County Council and the new Chair of Governors (the previous governors resigned). There was a general view that, while the support for some SEND children may have been inadequate, the school was generally doing much better than the Ofsted report suggested, and that specific managerial problems had led to the key problem which they identified.

In view of the ‘inadequate’ grading, the County will (following procedures) quickly bring in a Multi-Academy Trust to manage improvements in the school. I have asked to be kept informed on what is happening.

Parents were very concerned, however, that, legally an ‘inadequate’ grade means that the school should be permanently transferred to a Multi-Academy Trust. 

Parents have established a Facebook group to oppose academisation. I am supporting them and have written to the Regional Schools Commissioner, who will be responsible for overseeing the academisation process, to express my opposition.

Research by parents has shown that many academy orders have been revoked following parents’ opposition. I do not believe that specific managerial issues justify a wholesale privatisation of this community school. I am confident that the parents can prevent this happening and that the community will support them.

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