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Varndean impresses Ofsted inspectors
10:44am Wednesday 18th September 2013 in News
Varndean School has impressed inspectors again during its most recent Ofsted report.
The Balfour Road school was graded good overall, after being awarded good in all four categories following the inspection in July.
It comes after their last inspection in 2009, when the school was also rated good across the board.
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Head teacher William Deighan, who was also at the helm in 2009, has put the results down to teachers developing a good working relationship in the classroom and having high expectations of their students.
Mr Deighan added: “I’m also very proud to be a member of this staff, but most of all I’m extremely proud of our students.
“On top of our best-ever GCSE results – including the best English results for 11 to 16-year-olds in the city – this Ofsted report represents a tremendous start to the new school year.
“Varndean is a ‘good’ school – and we’re on the verge of being great.”
The inspectors commented favourably on the introduction of the school’s innovative schools-within-schools approach, as did parents.
The school was separated into four sections last September, each with its own head of school, a deputy head and a school leader.
Similar in size to small primary schools, the change aimed to build on the personal approach that parents told teachers their children miss when moving from primary school.
One parent was quoted in the report as saying: “We’ve really seen the benefit of moving to four schools where our child has been given great support.”
The inspector’s report highlighted the high standards of teaching at the school.
It said: “Teachers ask questions skilfully to make students think hard and consolidate their understanding.”
It also paid compliment to the behaviour of the students, and said: “Students conduct themselves well in and around the school.”
Chairman of governors Jon Dee said: “The good Ofsted assessment reflects well-deserved recognition of the considerable improvement that Varndean has made since the current head joined the school and reflects all the hard work and effort of the staff and governors.
“We have set ourselves challenging targets for the coming year so that we continue to improve the quality of teaching and support to our students, challenging them to aim high, to achieve their full potential and to take pride in the school.”
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