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St John's Wood school branded 'failure'

PUBLISHED: 12:30 10 December 2009 | UPDATED: 16:36 07 September 2010

A ST JOHN'S Wood school which is due to be overhauled as part of a £45million redevelopment has been put into special measures. In a report published this month, Ofsted inspectors judged that George Eliot infant school on Marlborough Hill was failing to

A ST JOHN'S Wood school which is due to be overhauled as part of a £45million redevelopment has been put into special measures.

In a report published this month, Ofsted inspectors judged that George Eliot infant school on Marlborough Hill was failing to give pupils an "acceptable standard of education".

The damning indictment came in the same week that plans were unveiled for the transformation of the infant school under the government's Building Schools for the Future programme.

The rebuild is part a bid to create a 'super campus' which will include George Eliot primary school, Quintin Kynaston Community Foundation and Beachcroft pupil referral unit.

Among the criticisms from Ofsted included the complaint that too much of the teaching is inadequate or of a low standard.

The school is also slammed because pupils are achieving well below the national average for reading, writing and mathematics.

But headteacher Erika James defended the school, saying that they were judged on the progress children make in just two years - despite most of pupils being unable to speak English when they start.

Ms James also stressed that the results of the report did not tally with the way the parents feel about the school

She said: "The inspectors came in and made a judgment. We've accepted that judgment and we have been totally co-operative, but it doesn't reflect the parents' view of the school.

"I've not met one parent yet who agrees with the Ofsted judgment, and it doesn't reflect what the local authority thought of the school beforehand."

Ms James added that George Eliot remained a very happy school with good behavioural standards - in spite of Ofsted's evaluation. "We hope to be out of special measures as soon as possible," she said.


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