When news happens, text LT and your photos and videos to 80360. Or contact us by email or phone.
Academy talks at failing Darwen Vale High school
A SECONDARY school which received the lowest possible Ofsted rating is in talks about becoming an academy.
Darwen Vale High, rated ‘inadequate’ this summer, is said to have made some improvements after inspectors re-visited for the first monitoring inspection.
However, the school recently had a visit from the Department for Education for discussions about academy status.
The new Academies Act, allows the government to force a failing school to become an academy under new leadership.
Four members of staff are said to have left since failing the Ofsted inspection and two governors have resigned.
The governors are to be replaced by an interim executive board run by Blackburn with Darwen Council. In the follow-up monitoring inspection, Ofsted said the school had responded speedily to inspection findings. Inspector Eric Craven concluded the school’s action plan was ‘fit for purpose’.
He said: “The school has made changes so roles and responsibilities of senior leaders are clear and linked to specific teams of staff. This has improved the way staff are held accountable.”
Headteacher Fiona Jack said talks regarding academy status were ‘only routine’.
She added: “We are delighted Ofsted recognises the progress made and supports our plans for continued improvement.”
Councillor Dave Harling, executive member for schools, said: “We are aware that early discussions have taken place regarding academy status.
“ Darwen Vale is making good progress and we believe a specialist interim executive board can drive forward the improvements required.”
Simon Jones, Blackburn with Darwen representative for the NUT, said academy talks were the ‘wrong direction’.
He said: “Forcing it to become an academy is just the wrong answer all around. It would mean there were no proper schools to choose from in Darwen, should that happen.”
Comments are closed on this article.