A school is celebrating after coming out of special measures in its latest Government inspection.

Having made its way through three principals and 21 months of scrutiny, the Sir Robert Woodard Academy in Lancing has finally been relieved of its special measures tag by regulator Ofsted.

The academy was told in January 2012 – just two years after replacing Boundstone Community College – it was “failing” and its effectiveness and capacity for improvement were both “inadequate”.

Ofsted criticised the academy’s teaching methods and said there were too few checks on pupils’ understanding and progress throughout lessons.

School bosses were warned to raise standards to at least the national average by summer 2013.


But under the leadership of its latest principal, Peter Midwinter, the academy in Upper Boundstone Lane, Lancing, has seen dramatic improvements.

Mr Midwinter, who was appointed in April, was told by inspectors this week the school would lose its special measures title with immediate effect after two days of checks.

Mr Midwinter said: “We hadn’t come out of special measures previously because of the governance, leadership and management of the academy and a questionable standard of teaching and learning.

“What has been clearly demonstrated is a new phase of leadership supported by a very pro-active academy council, which was not established in the same way as it is now.

“Now we have an emphasis on achieving a high standard of quality teaching and learning.

“The effort of our pupils must also be recognised. Their commitment to learning and working hard has contributed to this good news.

“We are very happy and everyone should be proud.”

Mr Midwinter said the school celebrated with a special assembly that marked the school’s good news.

Tim Loughton, Conservative MP for East Worthing and Shoreham, said: “It’s very good news and shows the hard work of the current and previous leadership teams has paid off.

“I’m sure the parents will show great support for the academy being rated ‘excellent’ in the next three years – and this is a very good start.”

A full Ofsted report on the academy will soon be published.