How does a school rated the best in Warrington get told it needs to improve by Ofsted

Warrington Guardian: Head Julie Warburton with pupils Head Julie Warburton with pupils

CARDINAL Newman High School topped the tables for the highest performing school in Warrington after 96 per cent of students achieved five A* to C grades in their GCSEs in 2013.

Yet the school was told by Ofsted inspectors that it requires improvement just months later.

Teaching unions across the country have criticised Ofsted for putting up increasingly difficult hurdles for schools to jump over to hit the top ratings.

A collection of schools - despite churning out record-breaking results - are being flagged up by Ofsted as needing to improve.

Cardinal Newman High School in Latchford was visited by inspectors in December where the school’s governing body fell under scrutiny from inspectors for not having an ‘accurate enough view of students’ achievement’.

But despite receiving the second lowest grading available to Ofsted inspectors, 68 per cent of pupils achieved five A* to C grades including English and maths, which was a record for the school.

The school was also judged good for achievement, quality of teaching and behaviour and safety of pupils by Ofsted inspectors but was still given the low rating.

Julie Warburton, head of school, said: “Our success is due to the consistently high standards expected of students, both academically and in their behaviour and personal presentation.

“Personalised curriculum pathways which meet the needs and aspirations of each individual and a rich array of extra-curricular opportunities help to prepare our students for the world beyond Cardinal Newman.”

National executive member for NASUWT for Merseyside and Cheshire, Mick Burrows, criticised Ofsted for regularly moving the goal posts.

He said: “We get a lot of reports of where one inspector says one thing, and another says something totally contradictory.

“Teachers and schools don't know what to do for the best, and it's creating panic and confusion.

“Teachers have to concentrate more on second-guessing what Ofsted will think rather than on what is right for their students.”

Mr Burrows also accused the Government of having ulterior motives for failing schools.

He added: “There is evidence that schools are failing Ofsted inspections as a softening-up exercise to push them into becoming an academy.”

A council spokesman added: “The proportion of schools judged inadequate in Warrington, at two per cent, is better than that found nationally at three per cent.

“The proportion of Warrington schools judged as outstanding at 23 per cent is better than that found nationally at 20 per cent.

“We continue to believe in the strength of the Warrington family of schools and by working together we achieve more for our children.”

An Ofsted spokesman said it was committed to improving schools so that children across the north west have the best possible opportunity of receiving a good education.

“From time to time we make changes to the way we inspect – such as introducing the requires improvement judgement – to ensure that we are challenging schools to be the best they can be.

“To ensure teachers and school leaders know exactly what to expect during an inspection we publish all of the relevant documents on our website. 

“This includes the framework for inspection, a handbook for inspectors and regular additional guidance to provide updates where necessary.”

Comments (10)

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7:28am Fri 14 Mar 14

SickAndTired2 says...

Who can trust motives of this sickeningly corrupt group of elite criminals with their ideology of lining the pockets of their rich chums at the expense of the rest of the country? Nothing short of a revolution will change this. Unfortunately the vast majority of the country are more concerned with reality tv shows and consuming junk than to wake up and pay attention to the grand theft of this nations assets that is taking place right under their noses.
Who can trust motives of this sickeningly corrupt group of elite criminals with their ideology of lining the pockets of their rich chums at the expense of the rest of the country? Nothing short of a revolution will change this. Unfortunately the vast majority of the country are more concerned with reality tv shows and consuming junk than to wake up and pay attention to the grand theft of this nations assets that is taking place right under their noses. SickAndTired2
  • Score: -6

9:24am Fri 14 Mar 14

MikeJT says...

"CARDINAL Newman High School topped the tables for the highest performing school in Warrington after 96 per cent of students achieved five A* to C grades in their GCSEs in 2013."

"Cardinal Newman High School in Latchford was visited by inspectors in December where the school’s governing body fell under scrutiny from inspectors for not having an ‘accurate enough view of students’ achievement’."

But despite receiving the second lowest grading available to Ofsted inspectors, 68 per cent of pupils achieved five A* to C grades including English and maths, which was a record for the school.

96%, 68% ? Did the school get it wrong, did the tables get it wrong , did the WG get it wrong. ................... OR..is it another case of pick the stat you best want to demonstrate the point you want to make ?

OK, I understand that 30% may have got 5 GCSE but NOT including maths and english (which is perhaps the more worrying) but if people want to make a valid point and discuss the reasons..... make it clearer
"CARDINAL Newman High School topped the tables for the highest performing school in Warrington after 96 per cent of students achieved five A* to C grades in their GCSEs in 2013." "Cardinal Newman High School in Latchford was visited by inspectors in December where the school’s governing body fell under scrutiny from inspectors for not having an ‘accurate enough view of students’ achievement’." But despite receiving the second lowest grading available to Ofsted inspectors, 68 per cent of pupils achieved five A* to C grades including English and maths, which was a record for the school. 96%, 68% ? Did the school get it wrong, did the tables get it wrong , did the WG get it wrong. ................... OR..is it another case of pick the stat you best want to demonstrate the point you want to make ? OK, I understand that 30% may have got 5 GCSE but NOT including maths and english (which is perhaps the more worrying) but if people want to make a valid point and discuss the reasons..... make it clearer MikeJT
  • Score: -6

10:27am Fri 14 Mar 14

Geordie1970 says...

My daughter went to Newman and left two years ago. It was always a fantastic school for her. Not just in terms of results but discipline and behaviour of the kids and helping out those who weren't top performers.
My daughter went to Newman and left two years ago. It was always a fantastic school for her. Not just in terms of results but discipline and behaviour of the kids and helping out those who weren't top performers. Geordie1970
  • Score: 8

10:53am Fri 14 Mar 14

Brick Bazooka says...

Geordie1970 wrote:
My daughter went to Newman and left two years ago. It was always a fantastic school for her. Not just in terms of results but discipline and behaviour of the kids and helping out those who weren't top performers.
...and she'll be appearing on Jeremy Kyle next week.

only joking. couldn't resist :)
[quote][p][bold]Geordie1970[/bold] wrote: My daughter went to Newman and left two years ago. It was always a fantastic school for her. Not just in terms of results but discipline and behaviour of the kids and helping out those who weren't top performers.[/p][/quote]...and she'll be appearing on Jeremy Kyle next week. only joking. couldn't resist :) Brick Bazooka
  • Score: -13

2:55pm Fri 14 Mar 14

PageA says...

SickAndTired2 wrote:
Who can trust motives of this sickeningly corrupt group of elite criminals with their ideology of lining the pockets of their rich chums at the expense of the rest of the country? Nothing short of a revolution will change this. Unfortunately the vast majority of the country are more concerned with reality tv shows and consuming junk than to wake up and pay attention to the grand theft of this nations assets that is taking place right under their noses.
If only the vast majority of the country could smoke what you smoke...then we'd all see the world through your eyes. Bad 'uns...they're all bad 'uns
[quote][p][bold]SickAndTired2[/bold] wrote: Who can trust motives of this sickeningly corrupt group of elite criminals with their ideology of lining the pockets of their rich chums at the expense of the rest of the country? Nothing short of a revolution will change this. Unfortunately the vast majority of the country are more concerned with reality tv shows and consuming junk than to wake up and pay attention to the grand theft of this nations assets that is taking place right under their noses.[/p][/quote]If only the vast majority of the country could smoke what you smoke...then we'd all see the world through your eyes. Bad 'uns...they're all bad 'uns PageA
  • Score: -6

3:07pm Fri 14 Mar 14

Northernsoul1 says...

The rating a school gets from OFSTED is not all about the results that the students obtain in their final year there. Many other factors are taken into account and it10165602 might be worth peoples time to read the report before moaning about the rating. The report rightly says that the school has many positive points but it is let down in other areas i.e.

This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because

The governing body does not have an accurate enough view of students’ achievement because it does not have a firm enough understanding of data, especially data relating to how well different groups of students achieve.

The governing body does not have enough knowledge of the school’s strengths and weaknesses to provide sufficient challenge and support to senior leaders’ successful drive to make the school better.

The governing body is not sufficiently involved in checking how effectively the school deploys its resources.

The Governing body for Cardinal Newman was shared with another well known school which is now in Special Measures precisely for the same reasons.

This is atime to re-group and move on to improvements in the areas highlighted in the report not for recriminations and backbiting.
The rating a school gets from OFSTED is not all about the results that the students obtain in their final year there. Many other factors are taken into account and it10165602 might be worth peoples time to read the report before moaning about the rating. The report rightly says that the school has many positive points but it is let down in other areas i.e. This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because The governing body does not have an accurate enough view of students’ achievement because it does not have a firm enough understanding of data, especially data relating to how well different groups of students achieve. The governing body does not have enough knowledge of the school’s strengths and weaknesses to provide sufficient challenge and support to senior leaders’ successful drive to make the school better. The governing body is not sufficiently involved in checking how effectively the school deploys its resources. The Governing body for Cardinal Newman was shared with another well known school which is now in Special Measures precisely for the same reasons. This is atime to re-group and move on to improvements in the areas highlighted in the report not for recriminations and backbiting. Northernsoul1
  • Score: 13

3:36pm Fri 14 Mar 14

Nick Tessla says...

SickAndTired2 wrote:
Who can trust motives of this sickeningly corrupt group of elite criminals with their ideology of lining the pockets of their rich chums at the expense of the rest of the country? Nothing short of a revolution will change this. Unfortunately the vast majority of the country are more concerned with reality tv shows and consuming junk than to wake up and pay attention to the grand theft of this nations assets that is taking place right under their noses.
Space Lizards?
[quote][p][bold]SickAndTired2[/bold] wrote: Who can trust motives of this sickeningly corrupt group of elite criminals with their ideology of lining the pockets of their rich chums at the expense of the rest of the country? Nothing short of a revolution will change this. Unfortunately the vast majority of the country are more concerned with reality tv shows and consuming junk than to wake up and pay attention to the grand theft of this nations assets that is taking place right under their noses.[/p][/quote]Space Lizards? Nick Tessla
  • Score: -9

6:31pm Fri 14 Mar 14

merrieflagwaver says...

Northernsoul1 wrote:
The rating a school gets from OFSTED is not all about the results that the students obtain in their final year there. Many other factors are taken into account and it10165602 might be worth peoples time to read the report before moaning about the rating. The report rightly says that the school has many positive points but it is let down in other areas i.e.

This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because

The governing body does not have an accurate enough view of students’ achievement because it does not have a firm enough understanding of data, especially data relating to how well different groups of students achieve.

The governing body does not have enough knowledge of the school’s strengths and weaknesses to provide sufficient challenge and support to senior leaders’ successful drive to make the school better.

The governing body is not sufficiently involved in checking how effectively the school deploys its resources.

The Governing body for Cardinal Newman was shared with another well known school which is now in Special Measures precisely for the same reasons.

This is atime to re-group and move on to improvements in the areas highlighted in the report not for recriminations and backbiting.
I think you miss the point! According to the Ofsted report, Cardinal Newman is, 'Good' in all areas apart from 'Governance' . So it is a good school DESPITE the Governing Body but rather unfairly, has been given a 'requires improvement' for the only aspect outside of the control of the school itself...The Governing Body.

It was 'the best performing school in Warrington' because it had the highest percentage of pupils gaining 5 A* to C grades at GCSE in 2013. It may also be worthwhile looking to see what score the school has for 'Value Added' as this tells you how well a school performs taking into consideration all pupils of all abilities. Is Ofsted fit for purpose? Can it still claim not to be politically motivated?
[quote][p][bold]Northernsoul1[/bold] wrote: The rating a school gets from OFSTED is not all about the results that the students obtain in their final year there. Many other factors are taken into account and it10165602 might be worth peoples time to read the report before moaning about the rating. The report rightly says that the school has many positive points but it is let down in other areas i.e. This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because The governing body does not have an accurate enough view of students’ achievement because it does not have a firm enough understanding of data, especially data relating to how well different groups of students achieve. The governing body does not have enough knowledge of the school’s strengths and weaknesses to provide sufficient challenge and support to senior leaders’ successful drive to make the school better. The governing body is not sufficiently involved in checking how effectively the school deploys its resources. The Governing body for Cardinal Newman was shared with another well known school which is now in Special Measures precisely for the same reasons. This is atime to re-group and move on to improvements in the areas highlighted in the report not for recriminations and backbiting.[/p][/quote]I think you miss the point! According to the Ofsted report, Cardinal Newman is, 'Good' in all areas apart from 'Governance' . So it is a good school DESPITE the Governing Body but rather unfairly, has been given a 'requires improvement' for the only aspect outside of the control of the school itself...The Governing Body. It was 'the best performing school in Warrington' because it had the highest percentage of pupils gaining 5 A* to C grades at GCSE in 2013. It may also be worthwhile looking to see what score the school has for 'Value Added' as this tells you how well a school performs taking into consideration all pupils of all abilities. Is Ofsted fit for purpose? Can it still claim not to be politically motivated? merrieflagwaver
  • Score: -8

8:54pm Sat 15 Mar 14

Northernsoul1 says...

merrieflagwaver wrote:
Northernsoul1 wrote:
The rating a school gets from OFSTED is not all about the results that the students obtain in their final year there. Many other factors are taken into account and it10165602 might be worth peoples time to read the report before moaning about the rating. The report rightly says that the school has many positive points but it is let down in other areas i.e.

This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because

The governing body does not have an accurate enough view of students’ achievement because it does not have a firm enough understanding of data, especially data relating to how well different groups of students achieve.

The governing body does not have enough knowledge of the school’s strengths and weaknesses to provide sufficient challenge and support to senior leaders’ successful drive to make the school better.

The governing body is not sufficiently involved in checking how effectively the school deploys its resources.

The Governing body for Cardinal Newman was shared with another well known school which is now in Special Measures precisely for the same reasons.

This is atime to re-group and move on to improvements in the areas highlighted in the report not for recriminations and backbiting.
I think you miss the point! According to the Ofsted report, Cardinal Newman is, 'Good' in all areas apart from 'Governance' . So it is a good school DESPITE the Governing Body but rather unfairly, has been given a 'requires improvement' for the only aspect outside of the control of the school itself...The Governing Body.

It was 'the best performing school in Warrington' because it had the highest percentage of pupils gaining 5 A* to C grades at GCSE in 2013. It may also be worthwhile looking to see what score the school has for 'Value Added' as this tells you how well a school performs taking into consideration all pupils of all abilities. Is Ofsted fit for purpose? Can it still claim not to be politically motivated?
Actually I have not missed the point. If at any time during an Ofsted inspection any area is highlighted as requiring improvement then the whole report will copy this despite there being some areas that are good or better. Sad to say but that is how the system works in all Ofsted inspections not just here. As I said it is time to improve the highlighted area(s) and move on. There will be another inspection within two years when hopefully a better outcome will be achieved.
[quote][p][bold]merrieflagwaver[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Northernsoul1[/bold] wrote: The rating a school gets from OFSTED is not all about the results that the students obtain in their final year there. Many other factors are taken into account and it10165602 might be worth peoples time to read the report before moaning about the rating. The report rightly says that the school has many positive points but it is let down in other areas i.e. This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because The governing body does not have an accurate enough view of students’ achievement because it does not have a firm enough understanding of data, especially data relating to how well different groups of students achieve. The governing body does not have enough knowledge of the school’s strengths and weaknesses to provide sufficient challenge and support to senior leaders’ successful drive to make the school better. The governing body is not sufficiently involved in checking how effectively the school deploys its resources. The Governing body for Cardinal Newman was shared with another well known school which is now in Special Measures precisely for the same reasons. This is atime to re-group and move on to improvements in the areas highlighted in the report not for recriminations and backbiting.[/p][/quote]I think you miss the point! According to the Ofsted report, Cardinal Newman is, 'Good' in all areas apart from 'Governance' . So it is a good school DESPITE the Governing Body but rather unfairly, has been given a 'requires improvement' for the only aspect outside of the control of the school itself...The Governing Body. It was 'the best performing school in Warrington' because it had the highest percentage of pupils gaining 5 A* to C grades at GCSE in 2013. It may also be worthwhile looking to see what score the school has for 'Value Added' as this tells you how well a school performs taking into consideration all pupils of all abilities. Is Ofsted fit for purpose? Can it still claim not to be politically motivated?[/p][/quote]Actually I have not missed the point. If at any time during an Ofsted inspection any area is highlighted as requiring improvement then the whole report will copy this despite there being some areas that are good or better. Sad to say but that is how the system works in all Ofsted inspections not just here. As I said it is time to improve the highlighted area(s) and move on. There will be another inspection within two years when hopefully a better outcome will be achieved. Northernsoul1
  • Score: 8

7:44pm Mon 17 Mar 14

SickAndTired2 says...

Tesla, PageA mock all you like with your ignorance as this country's assets, every bit of health data that exists about you along with your rights as a human being get sold to the lowest bidder. This is not fiction, the education system is only the tip of the iceberg.

Ask yourself why the coalition has given away billions worth of tax payer education infrastructure to unaccountable private sector interests, then ask
yourself which of those have been given away to major Tory party donors.

The coalition has created countless opportunities for the unscrupulous to pillage taxpayer funds that are supposed to be used to educate our children.

They have allowed academy bosses to "topslice" extraordinary salaries and inflation busting pay rises for themselves at a time when teachers (the people that actually do the work) are having their wages repressed with below inflation pay rises.

They have allowed schools to set up extremely dodgy financial arrangements, where the directors and trustees divert taxpayers' cash into their own businesses and personal accounts via no-bid "service" contracts.

They have allowed foreign corporations to establish academy chains to extract vast sums out of the education system (and out of the country) by charging for the use of their curricula.

They have used the UK's archaic and undemocratic honours system to bestow Lordships and Knighthoods upon the people that are milking the privatised education system for everything they can get out of it.

This country is being robbed blind and all the small town, small minded individuals can do is mock.
Tesla, PageA mock all you like with your ignorance as this country's assets, every bit of health data that exists about you along with your rights as a human being get sold to the lowest bidder. This is not fiction, the education system is only the tip of the iceberg. Ask yourself why the coalition has given away billions worth of tax payer education infrastructure to unaccountable private sector interests, then ask yourself which of those have been given away to major Tory party donors. The coalition has created countless opportunities for the unscrupulous to pillage taxpayer funds that are supposed to be used to educate our children. They have allowed academy bosses to "topslice" extraordinary salaries and inflation busting pay rises for themselves at a time when teachers (the people that actually do the work) are having their wages repressed with below inflation pay rises. They have allowed schools to set up extremely dodgy financial arrangements, where the directors and trustees divert taxpayers' cash into their own businesses and personal accounts via no-bid "service" contracts. They have allowed foreign corporations to establish academy chains to extract vast sums out of the education system (and out of the country) by charging for the use of their curricula. They have used the UK's archaic and undemocratic honours system to bestow Lordships and Knighthoods upon the people that are milking the privatised education system for everything they can get out of it. This country is being robbed blind and all the small town, small minded individuals can do is mock. SickAndTired2
  • Score: -3

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