St Andrew’s is outstanding: official!

I’ve just been reading the new Ofsted report for St Andrew’s School where I’m a governor. It’s really good news: St Andrew’s has been graded as outstanding. The inspector says, “The school provides an outstanding education for pupils, where they meet the challenge of high expectations and thrive in a positive learning environment.”

It’s all the more encouraging because, contrary to the stereotype image of church schools, St Andrew’s does not have a selective intake nor serve a particularly privileged community. The millionaire’s row of Richmond Crescent (home to MPs Emily Thornberry and Margaret Hodge and former home of the Blairs) may only be a stone’s throw away. But they don’t go to St Andrew’s. As the Ofsted report says, “Children enter Reception with levels of attainment well below national expectations…. By the time pupils leave the school, they are reaching average standards. This represents outstanding achievement for most pupils.”

There’s more praise for our wonderful Head teacher, Michelle Thomas: “The inspirational headteacher has a clear vision for improvement and high expectations for raising pupils’ standards and achievement“. All the staff, pupils, families and governors have worked together to create a great school.

It wasn’t always like this. St Andrew’s has been climbing, not coasting. Four years ago, the Ofsted rated the school satisfactory, but already improving rapidly. At the Ofsted before that, we were rated as a failing school. It was a really tough time: the head left, so did many of the staff. There was a high turnover of newly qualified teachers – although some excellent senior ones, Mr Ned and Ms Bush, stayed the course. Two excellent chairs of governors, Beverley Briggs and Rev Michael Learmouth, have worked with Michelle to steer the school to its outstanding rating.

Islington schools always need good governors. Many are staff or parents, but you can also be appointed by the Council or directly as a community governor. To find out more about becoming a governor, click here.

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1 Comment »

  1. […] the Cally. As the Guardian acknowledges, St Andrew’s school (where I’m a governor) is outstanding. Kings Cross blogger Will Perrin has pointed out some of the Cally’s culinary attractions. […]

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