Assigning the lowest possible overall rating of ‘inadequate’, lead inspector Kathy Maddocks concluded that standards at the school have declined in recent years, and criticised school leaders and governors for being too slow to implement necessary changes.
The quality of teaching at the school is described as “poor”, pupils do not make sufficient progress in a range of subjects and measures to guarantee pupils’ safety are “weak”.
All five of the individual effectiveness measures assessed by the inspectors resulted in an ‘inadequate’ grading.
One of the few positive observations contained in the report is that pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities are “achieving well”.
Inspectors do, however, note that the new headteacher, Karen Cornick, only took up the post four weeks prior to the inspection and remark that “there is evidence of her positive impact already”.
In a letter sent to parents on 21st November , the headteacher describes the report as a “huge blow” and points out that, while the school had much-improved outcomes at GCSE and Post-16 in 2015/16, the inspection team had been obliged to consider progress over the last three years.
As a consequence of being placed in special measures, the school’s governing body has been in further discussions with the Olympus Academy Trust (which it had already approached about joining back in January 2016) and the Regional Schools Commissioner.
The trust, which already incorporates two local secondary schools (Bradley Stoke Community School and Abbeywood Community School), issued a statement saying it was “frustrated that an agreement has still not been reached about levels of funding support for Patchway from the Department for Education (DfE) and the Education Funding Agency (EFA) in order for Patchway to join the trust”. The statement added: “We hope there will be a swift resolution by the DfE and EFA so that learners and staff at Patchway are able to benefit from joining the trust without further delay.”
Parents and carers of students at PCC have been invited to attend a meeting at the school on Monday 28th November when the proposal to join the Olympus Academy Trust will be further explained, along with the school’s plan for addressing the key issues arising from the Ofsted inspection.