Schools near Preston: Tarleton Academy gets a new Ofsted inspection but how did they do?

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A secondary school near Preston, which recently benefited from a government boost to its facilities, has been praised by Ofsted inspectors following a recent visit.

Tarleton Academy on Hesketh was reinspected by the educational watchdog between July 12 - July 13 and a new report was published on September 21.

The school, which opened a brand new building in April as part of the Government School Rebuild Scheme, was last rated good in 2018 but find out how it did this time around below:

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What did Ofsted say was particularly good about Tarleton Academy?​

Tarleton Academy was reinspected by Ofsted in July 2023.Tarleton Academy was reinspected by Ofsted in July 2023.
Tarleton Academy was reinspected by Ofsted in July 2023.

The report begins: “Pupils are happy to attend Tarleton Academy. They told inspectors that they are proud of their new building and facilities. Pupils said that this has helped to increase their enjoyment of learning, especially in practical activities.”

Leaders are said to have high expectations of pupils’ behaviour and achievement and this is mostly met by all pupils, who “learn well and without disruption.”

The curriculum is also described as “broad and balanced”, with the majority of subject curiuclums being “strong” and “carefully organised”, whilst “teachers regularly check on what pupils know and remember”.

Inspectors said: “Leaders are passionate about the varied programme of personal development that they provide. Pupils benefit from high-quality careers education that raises their aspirations from a young age. Leaders work well with external providers to provide up-to-date and memorable experiences, such as visiting speakers and performances, to support pupils’ learning.”

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On the same note, they added: “Older pupils enjoy supporting younger pupils as they learn to become responsible citizens. Pupils learn how to keep safe and healthy. They also take part in the wide range of extra-curricular activities, including forensics club, eco club and the choir.”

The priority placed on reading was also praised, as were the “rigorous systems” in place to identify the additional needs of pupils with SEND.

What does Tarleton Academy need to improve on according to Ofsted?​

Inspectors wrote: “In a small number of subjects, leaders are in the process of defining the knowledge that they want pupils to learn. On occasion, this hampers how well teachers design learning that builds on pupils’ prior knowledge. As they finalise the curriculums in these subjects, leaders should ensure that teachers are clear about the essential knowledge that pupils must learn and when this should be taught.”

Ofsted also said: “Some aspects of leaders’ communication with parents are in development. This means that some parents do not feel as well informed as they should about how well their children are progressing through the curriculum.”

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What was Tarleton Academy’s overall grade?

Ofsted said that Tarleton continues to be a good school.

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What does Tarleton Academy say about their new report?​

Headteacher Simon Day said: “We welcomed Ofsted’s visit to our school and for the inspectors to see our pupils flourishing at our newly developed site. The positive comments in the report reflect our commitment to providing a high-quality education at Tarleton Academy.

“We will continue to make improvements and set expectations which encourage all our pupils to excel.”