Ofsted inspectors have recognised the improvements made by new leaders at Gusford Primary School in their latest Ofsted report.


The school, which is part of The Active Learning Trust, was inspected during the first weeks of the new school year – one term after the new Executive Headteacher, Mrs Madsen, was appointed.


The report found that ‘pupils have noticed how Gusford has improved recently’ and described pupils as being ‘happy’. It recognised that ‘pupils behave well’ and that it ‘creates a calm and positive environment’.


Inspectors also said that ‘recent changes to the school leadership have had a positive effect in a short time’ and ‘have established a collaborative team spirit among staff’. They also praised staff for working ‘together to bring about the needed improvement to the school’.


The support from the Trust and governors was also described as ‘helping to improve the school rapidly’.


At the school’s previous inspection in 2018, most areas of the school were judged to ‘require improvement’. The latest report concludes that three of the five inspected areas under the new, more rigorous framework, are ‘good’ – including the ‘behaviour and attitudes’, ‘personal development’ and ‘leadership and management’. However, ‘the quality of education’ and ‘early years provision’ was judged to ‘require improvement’ – with the report acknowledging that many of the recent changes and improvements need more time to assess their outcome and impact – vital measures in reaching a ‘Good’ overall judgement.


Mrs Madsen said: “The school community should take great pride in the many excellent comments made by inspectors in our report. It is clear we are working on improving the correct areas, and we must continue this to secure a ‘Good’ overall judgement when inspectors visit the school again.


“It is without doubt that many of the improvements have been hampered by the disruption caused by Covid-19, but some of the recent changes and appointments have created a culture where pupils want to come to school and learn, and our parents feel confident we are doing the right things.”


“After hearing the comments made by inspectors, I have complete confidence that the school will be delivering a securely ‘Good’ education very quickly.”


The report continued to recognise the recent improvements, including the benefits pupils are receiving from an ‘ambitious curriculum’. Inspectors found that the new leaders’ focus on well planned lessons was ‘helping pupils to become more successful in their learning’.


Craig D’Cunha, Interim CEO of The Active Learning Trust, said: “We are very pleased for Mrs Madsen and the team at Gusford Primary School. While we would have loved to have secured a ‘Good’ overall grading, we are delighted that inspectors recognised the many great improvements that are happening across the school.


“The team never shies away from any challenges or decisions that need to be made to deliver an excellent education for our pupils and community. I have no doubt, with our continued support, that Gusford will quickly become the ‘Good’ school the community deserves.”