Following our Short Ofsted Inspection on Tuesday 16 May 2017, I am delighted to share the letter I received from the Lead Inspector, Andrew Lovett, HMI, on Monday 5 June 2017. This letter reflects the extremely positive feedback he and his colleague, Dr Malcolm Davison, gave us on the day and constitutes our ‘Ofsted Report’.
I am very proud of this external evaluation of Cirencester Deer Park which reaffirms our strengths and confirms Deer Park continues to be a good school. The inspection team have definitely captured the spirit of Deer Park. The report recognises the progress we have continued to make since our last inspection and the full engagement of our learning community: ‘Your leadership has created a school ethos that pupils, parents and staff all subscribe to enthusiastically.’
The report highly commends the quality of leadership and governance which came under extremely close scrutiny on Tuesday 16 May. Furthermore, I am especially pleased the commitment of our teachers and the wider staff team and our pupils’ achievements are also recognised: ‘pupils make more academic progress than they do in the majority of schools across the country.’
Graham Russell, Chair of Governors, and I were overwhelmed by the tremendous support we received from all members of our wider school community. This was strongly reflected in the responses to the Ofsted surveys, including Parent View.
‘This report from Ofsted is a hugely positive commentary on the high quality of education at Cirencester Deer Park School. The governance, leadership, ethos, and ambition of the school are all praised by Ofsted together with the overall results and progress made by our pupils. The inclusive nature of Deer Park School is one of our core values and strengths with our passion being to support every pupil to fulfil his or her potential.’ Graham Russell, Chair of Governors.
However, it is important to remember, an Ofsted Inspection, especially a short one day inspection, is only a snapshot in time. At Deer Park, we are ambitious for all of our pupils and, therefore, determined to be the best we can be every day. Consequently, I have been equally touched by the heartfelt feedback we have received from parents of pupils in our ‘Class of 2017’, who, having entrusted their children into our care for five years, have consistently articulated very high levels of satisfaction:
‘You have taught members of our family for over a decade. As our last child leaves today, we all wanted to say a heartfelt thank you for your dedication, inspiration and support for all three of our children. Deer Park is a truly outstanding school because the staff truly care about the children and make every effort to bring out the very best in each of them.’ Parent, Year 11
‘I would like to express my thanks to all members of staff who taught, supported, helped and put up with my daughter during her time at Deer Park. She can move forward with the confidence that comes with an excellent education and that is due to the patience, commitment and hard work of you all.’ Parent, Year 11
As referred to in the Lead Inspector’s letter, while we are committed to challenging all of our pupils to achieve more than they first think is possible, we are acutely aware of the need to ensure disadvantaged pupils can make progress in line with that of their peers. This is an objective within our strategic plan and will continue to be a focus as we address the next step for the school identified by Andrew Lovett, HMI. We are actively researching this issue and reviewing our current practice.