A SECONDARY school has ticked all the right boxes with education inspectors and been awarded the highest possible rating.

A team of inspectors visited Billericay School last month and after sitting in on 60 lessons, have given it an overall rating of “outstanding”.

Their report reveals inspectors are full of praise for many aspects of the school’s work, including the standard of teaching, student behaviour, leadership and management, curriculum opportunities and care, support and guidance offered to pupils.

The pupils themselves are also described as outstanding by the inspectors, who say they consistently observed “mature, well-mannered students with a positive attitude to learning”.

Other aspects singled out for praise at the 1,694-pupil school include the way it “constantly strives to excel” and ensures every child reaches his or her potential.

Inspectors were also impressed by the fact the school focuses on the needs of the student, not the needs of the school, a key factor in the rise in standards, they say.

Headteacher Sue Hammond said: “We are delighted to be recognised in this way. It demonstrates the level of dedication and hard work by our loyal team of teachers and support staff.

“Only 13 per cent of secondary schools are awarded an overall outstanding rating, so I am extremely proud of this accolade for our school.”

Robert Orr, chairman of Billericay School’s governors, added: “The governors are thrilled the school has achieved outstanding status.

“This recognition by Ofsted is well-deserved. It reflects great credit on our school and confirms what the governing body has long known – that the school has an extremely caring, committed and hard-working staff and a wonderful headteacher in Mrs Hammond.

“Our students also deserve praise – they are a credit to the school and our community.”