Ormiston Denes Academy

Name Ormiston Denes Academy
Website www.ormistondenes.co.uk
Ofsted Inspection Rating Inadequate
Inspection Date 26 June 2019
Address Yarmouth Road, Lowestoft, Suffolk, NR32 4AH
Phone Number 01502574474
Type Academy
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 873 (50% boys 50% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 14.9
Academy Sponsor Ormiston Academies Trust
Local Authority Suffolk
Percentage Free School Meals 37.6%
Percentage English is Not First Language 5.7%
Persisitent Absence 13.8%
Pupils with SEN Support 14.7%
Catchment Area Information Available Yes, our catchment area data is FREE
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

Information about this school

The current principal and senior leadership team have been in place since 2016. The school is a member of the Ormiston Academies Trust. There is a local governing body to whom the trustees of the MAT delegate responsibility for the day-to-day operations of the school. The trustees are responsible for compliance with the academy’s funding agreement. The proportion of pupils who are eligible for the pupil premium funding is well above the national average. The proportion of pupils with SEND is above the national average. Pupils enter with attainment that is significantly lower than that expected for their age. At the time of the inspection, the school was running a time-limited trial of teaching a number of Year 8 boys in a single-sex group for English. This practice is capable of amounting to segregation by gender contrary to the Equality Act 2010. However, the school’s rationale for this policy is that boys achieve less well in English than girls and they want to establish whether they can improve boys’ achievement with this approach. Inspectors concluded that segregation by gender is, in this case, reasonable and proportionate to remedy the concerns about boys’ achievement. Therefore, it meets the requirements for the positive action exemption under section 158 of the Equality Act 2010 and is not unlawful. The school makes use of four other education providers: Harbour PRU, Lowestoft; Old Warren House, Lowestoft; Attic Walpole PRU, Halesworth; and Attic Hillside PRU, Bungay.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is an inadequate school Since the previous inspection, leaders have successfully improved teaching and raised standards for most pupils. However, in doing so, inspectors judge that leaders have failed to pay due regard to the achievement, welfare and safety of a small but significant number of pupils. Leaders cannot guarantee the safeguarding of pupils educated out of school, but remaining on the school’s roll, because contact between the school and these pupils is too infrequent. The persistent absence of a group of pupils, often those eligible for the pupil premium and those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), has been too high for too long. The school’s misuse of attendance reporting has disguised the issue. A significant minority of pupils are not making good progress, because they are either not in lessons or in school. They do not benefit from the school’s effective subject specialist teaching. Fixed-term exclusions remain above average. The school has the following strengths Since the previous inspection, the headteacher and other leaders have shown determination to raise attainment. Pupils, parents, governors and staff agree that behaviour in lessons, around the school and outside school has improved significantly under the current leadership. Pupils in school are safe. Typically, learning is free of interruption and low-level disruption is rare. The promotion of literacy is central to the school’s work. Pupils’ skills in reading and writing are developed well and there is good attention given to the development of vocabulary. Confidence in speaking has not yet received as much attention. Most pupils now make progress that is at least in line with other pupils nationally. This includes disadvantaged pupils. The improvement of teaching and learning is at the heart of leaders’ work and the performance management of staff. Most teaching is good. There is effective work addressing the remaining inconsistencies between subjects. Support for pupils’ next steps in education or towards employment, including careers information, guidance and support, is very effective. Over the last two years, leaders have improved the school’s reputation with pupils, parents, carers and the local community. After several years of decline, the roll is rising. Over nine out of ten parents would recommend the school.