Doncaster schools ranked as some of the worst in the country

Education news...
Education news...

Doncaster schools have been ranked as some of the worst in the country in a new report released today by Ofsted.

The education watchdog’s annual report paints a bleak picture for standards of education in the town.

Doncaster was ranked second from bottom in the country in a national education league table.

And it has the lowest number of ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ primary schools in the North East and Yorkshire and Humber region.

The figures are based on inspections carried out between 2013 and 2014.

They show 42 per cent of pupils in the town attend primary schools which are ‘inadequate’ or ‘requiring improvement’.

Eleanor Brazil, director of learning and opportunities, children and young people, said while the figures were ‘disappointing’, improvements had been made in a number of areas.

She said: “We are completely committed to supporting our schools and academies so that our children get a good quality of education.

“Every Ofsted inspector who monitors schools which require improvement praises the progress the school is making and the local authority’s involvement.

“Ofsted inspection outcomes for primary schools have improved.

“The number of primary schools in special measures is reducing rapidly and is now only 2 per cent, in line with the national average of 1.6 per cent.

“Furthermore, test results in primary schools have improved this year and gaps between Doncaster’s attainment and the national picture are narrowing.”

She added: “The council has very stringent plans in place to secure the rapid improvement of all schools. 
“These plans have been approved by Ofsted and are showing early signs of effectiveness.”

Doncaster’s secondary schools and academies also failed to fare well.

Only 63 per cent of children in the town attend a secondary school or academy ranked as ‘good’ our ‘outstanding’, putting the local authority second from bottom in the region.

Nationally, Doncaster secondary schools have been ranked as fifth worst in the country.

Coun Nuala Fennelly, Doncaster Council’s cabinet member for children’s services, said: “It is totally unacceptable that some local children may underachieve as a result of below average performance within a number of Doncaster’s schools and academies.

“When we came into office last year Doncaster was a failing council, which was already in government intervention and had poor relationships with local partners including schools.

“Since then we have made great strides forward, leading the council out of government intervention and tackling problems head on.

“We know where problems exist and we have a clear plan to improve the situation.

“We will not rest until all of our schools are providing a ‘good or better’ standard of education.”

The report found standards in primary and secondary schools in Doncaster had declined since last year.

The chances of pupils attending a ‘good’ school have decreased by three per cent for children in primary education, and six per cent for secondary pupils.

Chief Ofsted inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw, who delivered the education watchdog’s annual report, said secondary schools nationally had ‘stalled’.

He said there were 170,000 pupils in ‘inadequate’ secondary schools, about 70,000 more than two years ago.