Academy springs to ‘good’ school in latest inspection
Published by KDavison for New Charter Group in Education and also in Communities, Housing
Pupils at Silver Springs Academy celebrate the results with New Charter's mascot Nora The Owl
The first primary school in Tameside to become an academy has been rated ‘good’ with ‘outstanding’ features just two years after opening its doors.
Silver Springs Academy in Stalybridge received a glowing report in its first inspection with Ofsted rating leadership and management as well as measures to safeguard pupils at the school as ‘outstanding’.
The report recognises the continued improvement on performance at the school since it changed from Ridge Hill Primary and Nursery to an academy under the new name in April 2012.
Ridge Hill was placed in special measures late in 2009 and emerged from the Ofsted category two years later, when it was graded satisfactory.
The school’s transformation has continued in the past two years and in the latest report, pupils’ achievement was rated as ‘good’ and rapidly improving.
The quality of teaching and the behaviour of pupils were rated as ‘good’, recognising that children are polite and show consideration and respect for each other and adults and take responsibility for the continued harmony in the school.
The report also highlighted that the school is an important part of the community and that children at the academy get a ‘good start to their educational life’.
Inspectors found that the majority of pupils make ‘good progress’ in English and mathematics and written work is ‘consistently of high quality’ in all subjects. Teachers have high expectations and provide activities that interest and inspire pupils in a wide range of subjects and that the children are never bored.
Ofsted inspectors gathered the views of parents, who expressed unreserved support for the school and would recommend the school to other parents.
Teaching was also found to be ‘consistently good in all year groups’ and Principal Deborah Mason was highlighted by Ofsted for her ‘uncompromising drive for improvement that is shared by other leaders, governors and staff’.
New school building
Silver Springs is preparing to move into a new £3m academy building on the current School Crescent site during the next academic year.
Work will start in June to replace the existing buildings with a new two-storey facility which will house a number of top-class features including improved IT facilities, a specialist early years department and a brand new learning resource centre.
Deborah Mason, Principal at Silver Springs Academy said: “I am delighted for the staff, pupils and families of the school that all their hard work and care has been recognised and is reflected in this fantastic report. I am so glad that the community has a school that it can be proud of and that we can now look forward to ensuring that by the next inspection the results will be even better.”
In the March inspection, the academy’s governance was rated as ‘outstanding’ and Ofsted praised the school’s sponsor Great Academies Education Trust, formed by New Charter Housing Trust, for being ‘highly effective’ and providing additional expertise to drive improvement.
Tony Powell, Chair of Governors at Silver Springs Academy and New Charter’s Executive Director of Neighbourhoods added: “Children and parents have a school they can be proud of and it’s fantastic to see the academy improve at such a fast pace.
“These results help to raise aspirations in the community and with a new school build on the way, the academy has a promising future as one of the best educational facilities in the borough.”
A new website has launched for the Great Academies Education Trust (http://www.greatacademieseducationtrust.org.uk). You can find out more about Silver Springs Academy and other academies sponsored by the education trust on the website.
To view the full Ofsted inspection report, visit http://www.silverspringsacademy.org.uk/parents/ofsted-reports
Notes for editors
Silver Springs was inspected 27 – 28 March. The results were published by Ofsted on Monday 29 April.
New Charter formed in 2000 as the new landlords to own and manage homes transferred from Tameside council in Greater Manchester. With a turnover of approximately £100m a year and a workforce of around 1000, New Charter is one of the region’s largest registered providers of social housing. By incorporating Gedling Homes and Aksa Homes the Group owns around 19,500 homes. It came 7th in the 2014 Sunday Times 100 Best Not-For-Profit Companies To Work For survey.
New Charter also sponsors three academies through its Great Academies Education Trust. This includes two secondary academies (New Charter Academy in Ashton and Copley Academy in Stalybridge) and one primary (Silver Springs Academy in Stalybridge).