A CWMBRAN secondary school has been removed from special measures after inspectors found it has made “sufficient progress”.
Croesyceiliog School was put in special measures following an inspection in February last year due to shortcomings in several areas.
A report by education watchdog Estyn recommended improvements in the quality of teaching, attendance levels and that the school should strengthen leadership at all levels.
But following a further inspection earlier this month, the school is judged to have made progress against all of Estyn’s recommendations.
An Estyn report says progress has been made in raising standards at key stage 4, with staff having shown “high levels of commitment” in helping pupils to settle back into school after periods of lockdown.
“The school has continued to work hard to raise pupils’ achievement and develop their skills, independence and resilience,” the report says.
“These efforts have had a positive impact, and the standard of pupils’ work is now notably better than at the time of the last monitoring visit.”
Inspectors also found the school has developed “a more strategic and focused approach to improving teaching”.
A programme of professional learning activities has targeted previous shortcomings, and teaching has “improved substantially” as a result of these strategies, the report says.
The school’s executive headteacher Elspeth Lewis, appointed shortly before the pandemic, has also communicated clearly “a strong vision for improvement”, inspectors said.
Improvements in leadership have helped improve attendance, the quality of teaching and raised standards, it is said.
Mrs Lewis, executive headteacher, said: “The school community, students, staff and the governing body thoroughly deserve this very positive monitoring report.
“Since I commenced leading the school I have been delighted with the resolve of all members of our school community to improve the overall quality of education at Croesyceiliog.”
Cllr Richard Clark, Torfaen council’s executive member for education, said the report reflects “the combined efforts of the whole school”.
He added: “This is a first important step towards the school becoming a centre of excellence where students, parents and everyone in the school community have high aspirations for every learners matched with fantastic teaching and support to every learner.”
Council leader, Cllr Anthony Hunt, commended the headteacher for her “outstanding leadership and challenge to the entire school to drive the necessary improvement. However, it doesn’t stop here.
“While there have been real improvements, there is still more that the school needs to do to build on the foundation that has been established.”