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Holt Farm Junior School in special measures
8:00am Monday 11th March 2013 in News
A TROUBLED school hit by teachers striking and a sacked governing body has been dealt a final blow and been put into special measures by Ofsted.
Holt Farm Junior School in Rochford has been heavily criticised by Ofsted inspectors for its quality of teaching, pupil achievement and leadership and management.
At its last inspection in April 2011 it was rated satisfactory but when inspectors visited in January it was downgraded to inadequate and needing special measures. It will receive regular monitoring by Ofsted inspectors.
The school is led by Hasan Chawdhry who took over full time last September.
Teaching union the NUT led a strike before Christmas in dispute of his ‘poor management style’.
Union representative Jerry Glazier said; “I’m not surprised about the drop in standards. In April 2011 the school was fundamentally better than in January. The assertion of the headteacher about standards improving under his leadership are not demonstrated by this report.
“The teaching has been destabilised with some off sick and another seconded. This has resulted in temporary staff and its bound to have an effect on teaching and learning. Its a consequence not a criticism.
“The issues are symptoms of a more profound issue regarding the headteacher’s poor management style.”
Mr Glazier added he is considering writing to Ofsted to complain as the report ‘exaggerates’ the number of teachers off sick instead of half he says it is one third of staff.
He also said it is incorrect the dispute is due to staff unhappy with staffing changes.
The report says: “Mr Chawdhry has introduced a range of strategies to bring about improvements but these have not always proved successful because not all staff have adopted them. "
Mr Chawdhry did not return the Echo’s calls.
Essex County Council assumed governorship of the school in December but the governing body did not leave until February. The county council is setting up an interim executive board to take over the running of the school, now likely to become an academy..
Governors were cricised by inspectors for failing to hold the school to account for the quality of teaching, the provision for less able pupils and management of finances.
Stephen Castle, Cabinet Member for Education and Lifelong Learning, said: “Essex County Council accepts all of the findings in the Ofsted report but would like to reassure parents that several measures have already been implemented to drive up standards and improve education.
“The priority is to now appoint an Interim Executive Board who will work to delivered structured support to the staff and leadership team and advise on a wider term improvement plan and the future direction of the school.