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CHINGFORD: School criticised by inspectors
5:22pm Tuesday 13th December 2011 in Your Local Areas
A PRIMARY school requires special measures because it is failing to provide an acceptable education, according to a government watchdog.
Ofsted inspectors found pupils were not making sufficient progress at Larkswood Primary School in New Road, Chingford, due to inadequate teaching and poor leadership.
Boys, children from poorer families and those with special educational needs were highlighted as making inadequate progress.
Pupils were found to be falling behind in mathematics and English, with boys particularly not always encouraged to improve their writing.
The report found there is a “significant amount” of inadequate teaching and assessments are not used effectively to meet children’s needs.
It said pupils “lose interest when teachers talk too much and do not encourage them to take an active role in their learning.
Parents interviewed expressed concerns which mirrored the findings of inspectors.
Pupils numbers have increased recently and three headteachers have shared responsibility for the school during the prolonged absence of the former headteacher.
More than a quarter of pupils have special educational needs or disabilities.
Despite recommending that the school should be placed under special measures, the new headteacher was praised for making improvements.
Inspectors found Lynne Harrowell, who joined the school in September, had made “a very positive start”.
The report continued: “She has identified precisely what needs to be done to improve the school and has put structures and actions in place to put it on the road to recovery.
“She recognises that much greater rigour and consistency are needed in many areas but particularly in promoting more effective learning.”
Ms Harrowell, who has previously worked as a headteacher at two schools in Hackney and one in Brighton, said she was determined to build on the progress made since she started.
She said: "I've been overwhelmed by the support from parents and carers, the governing body, the director and the Friends of Larkswood for which I'm very grateful. I'm very confident we can work together as a team to get the school out of special measures.
"We've been appointing some outstanding new teachers including a new assistant head and we're introducing a variety of new methods such as an accumulative approach to teaching children to read and write with our Read Write Inc project.
"I'm also very keen on enriching the curriculum, we've had a theatre group in this term to visit the children which I want to do more of."
She added: "I've been working in education since 1981 and I love my job. I've been excited about coming here to Larkswood and I hope we can make it an outstanding school."
Extra-curricular activities and the school’s Breakfast Club were also praised.
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