Rockwood: Latest Monitoring Inspection Report
Encouraging news from Ofsted
Following the fifth Ofsted monitoring inspection at Rockwood Academy on 11-12th November 2015, I am writing to inform you that the report can now be accessed on both the CORE Education and Rockwood Academy websites (see below). The inspection, led by HMI Chris Chapman, was the final monitoring inspection before the full section 5 inspection which the Academy can expect early next year.
This latest report, which concludes that “leaders and managers are taking effective action towards the removal of special measures,” is extremely encouraging and certainly provides the most optimistic forecast for the Academy since the March 2014 Inspection. A comprehensive range of improvements have been acknowledged in the report and there is a particular emphasis on the immediate impact of our new Principal, Mr Choudhury. His “passion, commitment, drive and determination” coupled with his “clear vision” are key factors in taking the Academy forward. We are delighted that Mr Choudhury’s leadership has been deservedly commended in this way and more confident than ever that Rockwood will continue to flourish with his diligent and focused guidance. Since joining us in September this year, Mr Choudhury has worked tirelessly in challenging circumstances to get the Academy back on track. He and his fellow leaders deserve enormous credit for their relentless pursuit to improve all aspects of the Academy’s work.
The report continues to acknowledge the role of the CORE Education Trust, particularly with regards to its provision of “highly effective support” so I would like to pay tribute to the many volunteers (Members, Trustees, Governors and partners) whose “strengths…expertise and skills” are now paying dividends as we bring our “strong strategic vision” into focus. Our outward facing ethos and the implementation of our CORE Values are clearly having a positive impact on Rockwood. The constructive partnership between the Trust and the Academy is a vital component in supporting the Academy’s journey out of special measures and I am personally very pleased at how positively Mr Choudhury has embraced and nurtured that relationship.
Perhaps the most powerful sentiment in this latest report is the acknowledgment that the Academy and the Trust have placed a necessary emphasis on looking forward, not back. It is noted in the report that “inspectors found convincing evidence that the changes to staffing and to the Academy’s ethos have both been important improvements in tackling serious inadequacies found at the time of the inspection in March 2014.” Indeed, Ofsted inspectors particularly welcomed our new name, saying it had “provided the students, staff and leaders of the academy with a ‘fresh start’”. The Trust and Mr Choudhury remain determined to drive forward and improve outcomes for the children at Rockwood. There is much to take encouragement from following this monitoring inspection but we remain extremely focused on our uncompromising aspirations to reward our students who consistently demonstrate “a keenness, eagerness and thirst for learning” with an Academy to be proud of.
Finally, I would like to acknowledge that our recent improvements are testament to the support of the many parents who have offered Mr Choudhury, the Academy and the Trust their full support and encouragement. I am confident that, after reading this report, parents will feel strongly that the Academy now has the right leader doing the right things to move us forward to a new era at Rockwood Academy.