Daventry academy jumps up Ofsted rankings to outstanding

Abbey pupils during a residential trip to Wales earlier this year
Abbey pupils during a residential trip to Wales earlier this year

A Daventry school has made a huge leap up the Ofsted grades after hardwork from staff and pupils.

The Abbey Academy had been given the lowest possible grade of ‘special measures’ in 2012 when it was still the Abbey Junior School. But now the school has jumped to being on the cusp of the highest grade, ‘outstanding’.

The school was given ‘good’ ratings in all four areas inspectors take into consideration – leadership and management, behaviour and safety of pupils, quality of teaching, and the achievement of pupils.

Three points were raised as the reasons the school did not get an ‘outstanding’ grade: progress made in maths, the need to instill a love of books in children, and a lack of opportunities for play in the playground.

Headteacher Dan Sutton said: “They were all things we already knew about, and were already working on. We are just about to embark on improvements to the playground, but we didn’t want to start them right before the holidays. With maths and reading we were already doing new things but they hadn’t had time to show results yet.

“Another six months and we’d have been ‘outstanding’.

“When we got the report everyone here was so proud

“For a long time people thought the Abbey wasn’t a good school. Now we’re among the best in Daventry.

“The staff here have worked at 150 per cent as a team towards this.”

The school has seen a huge refurbishment project, new ways of learning, and new ways to encourage the pupils and recognise their achievements.

Mr Sutton said: “The children were proud of the Ofsted report as well.

“What we try and do is lift the lid on their education. Give them opportunities to learn, and try and do what they want to do and fit it all into the curriculum.

“They are really proud of their school – they like what they do here, and they also look after the building as well.”