Long Lane Church of England Primary School in Dalbury Lees, near Ashbourne, has been rated as ‘requires improvement’ in an Ofsted report published on September 18 – following an inspection in June.
What was meant to be a monitoring visit, soon turned into a full inspection as Ofsted officers were impressed with the amazing progress the school made just in 12 months following an ‘inadequate’ rating published in June 2022.
Following the most recent visit, behaviour and attitudes were rated as ‘good’, while the quality of education, personal development as well as leadership and management were rated as ‘requires improvement’. It is a significant improvement since 2022 when both the quality of education and leadership and management were rated as ‘inadequate’.
The Ofsted report published earlier this month highlighted the progress made and outlined what school still needs to improve, to have a better rating in the future.
In the report, inspectors said: "Long Lane is a warm and welcoming school. Pupils are proud to attend. They get on well with each other and the adults they work with. Like pupils, staff and parents are positive about the school. They say that pupils are well catered for.
“The quality of leadership has strengthened considerably over the last 12 months. Senior leaders have a much sharper understanding of their roles and responsibilities. Effective accountability and quality assurance measures have been introduced. As a result, there is a shared purpose across the staff team.
"However, while the school has improved significantly over the last year, it is still not good. Weaknesses in the curriculum and the provision for pupils’ personal development remain. The implementation of the curriculum is improving. However, many of these measures are still in their infancy and have yet to impact on the overall quality of education provided. Nevertheless,the school has the capacity for continued improvement.”
Following the inspection, Rachel Yemm, Chair of Governors at the Acorn Multi Academi Trust, which runs the school, said: “In June 2023, we welcomed the Ofsted monitoring visit to showcase our village school and the improvements we had made. We were very disappointed to be graded inadequate by Ofsted in June 2022, and we have been working extremely hard to ensure the school is making continuous improvements.
"It is not usual practice and is unprecedented for a first monitoring visit to be changed to a full graded inspection, but we are delighted that the inspectors decided to do this, and re-graded Long Lane, as requires improvement. Ofsted would usually expect it to take schools between 18 – 24 months to achieve this. This highlights the ongoing work we have completed to gain this new grading within one academic year. We are all committed to continuing our journey to become an outstanding school.
“This is an amazing achievement in such a short amount of time, and we would like to give our heartfelt thanks to all the staff and governors who have worked so tirelessly to help us achieve this positive outcome.”