Wed, 10 Jan 2018
MORE than 90 per cent of West Berkshire primary schools are rated good or outstanding, according to education watchdog Ofsted.
The new figures are a marked improvement compared to 2015, when just 69 per cent of the district’s primary schools were deemed to be good or better.
The Ofsted Annual Report shows 91 per cent of the district’s primary schools were rated good or outstanding following their most recent inspection, placing West Berkshire second behind Wokingham (92 per cent) across the county.
The figures also show an improvement in the standard of West Berkshire’s secondary schools, with 89 per cent now rated good or better.
An increase of nine per cent on last year sees the district boast one of the highest percentages of good or outstanding secondary schools in the South East.
Only Surrey has a better ranking (94 per cent), while Kent and Wokingham equal West Berkshire’s figure at 89 per cent.
The annual report, published in December, also makes special mention of West Berkshire Council’s significant improvement in its children’s services after jumping two grades from inadequate to good in the space of a single inspection.
West Berkshire’s executive member for education, Lynne Doherty (Con, Northcroft), said: “West Berkshire Council is proud of all its schools and the children they educate.
“Over the last four years we have been focusing on delivering a school improvement strategy, supported by additional council funding of £100,000 per year, targeting teaching and leadership.
“This has borne fruit, with a rapid improvement in Ofsted inspection grades, reflected in the statistics set out in Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector’s 2016/17 report.”
Mrs Doherty added: “As of today our combined schools’ grading shows we now have 95 per cent of West Berkshire schools graded good or outstanding.
“I am absolutely delighted with this significant improvement, which reflects the council’s additional investment and a lot of hard work on the part of schools.”
Eighty nine per cent of primary schools in neighbouring authorities Reading, Slough and Windsor and Maidenhead were judged good or outstanding, while Bracknell Forest had 76 per cent of primaries rated good or better – the lowest in the South East region.
Slough (85 per cent) and Bracknell Forest (80 per cent) both saw a decrease in the percentage of secondary schools rated good or better, while Windsor and Maidenhead (77 per cent) has improved since last year.
The number of Reading’s secondary schools rated good or better remained the same at 63 per cent.
According to the report, 91 per cent of primary schools in the South East were judged to be good or outstanding, a three percentage point increase compared with August 2016 figures.
By the end of August 2017, 90 per cent of all schools in the South East were judged good or outstanding at their most recent inspection, compared with 89 per cent nationally.
This was a two percentage point increase for the region compared with August 2016.