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Hundred of Hoo no longer in special measures

Date: 11/11/2010           Category: Learning and Achievement

A huge improvement in standards at Hundred of Hoo school has led to it being taken out of special measures by government inspectors after just 15 months.

The radical turnaround has seen the secondary school judged as satisfactory in all areas with good capacity to improve following the latest Ofsted inspection in October.

Ofsted inspectors placed the school under special measures after a two-day visit in April 2009 when they said students were underachieving and the leadership was not good enough to secure improvements.

That led to a new leadership team and Interim Executive Board being brought in and the school was partnered with the outstanding Sir Joseph Williamson Mathematical School, whose headteacher, Dr Gary Holden was appointed Executive Principal.

The board’s actions have been rigorous and the school now has a clear and accurate picture of its strengths and areas for development.

Standards are rising, with new systems in place to track students’ progress and provide support for those who are falling behind or who need extra help.

The school, which has 1,500 pupils aged between 11 and 18 years, celebrated an 8 per cent increase in the number of students achieving five A* to C GCSE grades including English and Maths this year.

Students told inspectors they feel safe and cared for. Their behaviour has improved and the school is on its way to becoming an educational, cultural and social hub for the local community.

Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Children’s Services Cllr Les Wicks, said: “This is a well deserved outcome and results from everyone’s hard work. I’m confident that the school will take on board the comments from the report and will continue to go from strength to strength.”

Dr Gary Holden, Executive Principal, said: “We are all delighted to be out of special measures. This has been achieved through the efforts of the staff, parents, children and governors all working together as a huge team.

“However, we are not complacent and we realise that while this is a positive step forward, we are just at the start of our journey to ensure that the Hundred of Hoo is an outstanding school, of which the whole community can be justly proud.”

Rose Collinson, Director of Children and Adult services at Medway Council, said: “I am delighted with this outcome. It’s a well deserved recognition of the enormous commitment and work of staff, students and governors at the school.

“Hundred of Hoo is not only a thriving and ambitious place to work and study, but it also plays a very vital role in the local community. I am pleased that Ofsted have recognised this and the school’s commitment to raising standards.

“The school is now very well placed to move forward in partnership and ensure students at Hoo learn well, make good progress and are well placed to achieve their personal ambitions.”