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Monday, 30 March 2015

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Cumbria council chief moves to reassure parents after Ofsted findings

A key figure in charge of standards of education in Cumbria today moved to reassure parents that many children already go to good or outstanding schools.

Caroline Sutton photo
Caroline Sutton

Caroline Sutton, assistant director for schools and learning at Cumbria County Council, accepted Ofsted’s conclusions.

She said: “Everyone who works in secondary education is really sorry that this is the outcome and we all share a bit of the responsibility for that and through the Cumbria Alliance of System Leaders (CASL) want to share the solution.

“Ofsted was inspecting individual schools and not the local authority but we accept its conclusions and we agree too many schools are judged to be inadequate or requires improvement.

“As a local authority our role is to monitor, challenge, support and intervene in maintained schools but headteachers and school governors have got the first responsibility for their school’s performance.”

The council has no powers to step in to help certain types of schools like academies. Mrs Sutton added: “Sixty-five percent of secondary pupils are educated in good and outstanding schools and over half are good or outstanding.

“We are disappointed what has been reported elsewhere where a number of the 37 are judged to be inadequate.”

Mrs Sutton also said many of the issues highlighted by Ofsted had already been identified by CASL, a new network set up to tackle poor standards. The council is one of the organisations involved.

She said: “Work is already underway to address some of the areas, particularly in English and maths and the outcomes for pupils on free school meals.”


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