Preston’s Abrar Academy fails to make the grade

Photo Neil Cross
Abrar Academy, 34-36 Garstang Rd, Preston
Photo Neil Cross Abrar Academy, 34-36 Garstang Rd, Preston
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Government watchdogs have criticised the standard of secular teaching at a private Muslim boys’ school.

The Abrar Academy in Preston, which opened less than eight years ago, has seen it’s official rating plummet from Outstanding to ‘Requires Improvement’.

Photo Neil Cross
Abrar Academy, 34-36 Garstang Rd, Preston

Photo Neil Cross Abrar Academy, 34-36 Garstang Rd, Preston

Inspectors from the Office for Standards in Education say teaching in secular subjects at the Garstang Road day and boarding school does not help pupils to learn as well as in Islamic subjects.

However, despite downgrading the school’s overall effectiveness rating, the inspectors praised outcomes for pupils, the sixth form provision and personal development, behaviour and welfare of pupils.

They also said the school had a positive ethos and the open culture allowed pupils to talk about their concerns.

The privately-owned school has 106 pupils on the roll, 44 of whom are boarders and 23 in the sixth form.

Inspectors said behaviour was good and added: “Students in the school learn well and make rapid progress.

“Pupils say that this is particularly so in their Islamic studies. Leaders confirm that this is the case.”

The final report added: “ Year 11 pupils’ attainment in secular subjects has been typically very high over time. This reflects, in part, pupils’ generally above-average starting points.”

In order to improve Ofsted said the school needed to improve the assessment and analysis of pupils’ progress, record keeping and raise teachers’ expectations in secular learning.

Documents and the school website also needed updating.

The report added: “ Leaders are willing to act to e nsure that improvement happens.”

Despite attempts by the Evening Post to contact the school no-one was available to comment.