Poplar Primary School’s ‘one in 14,000’ improvement

Wendy Hick (2), headteacher at Manorfield Primary School

Wendy Hick (2), headteacher at Manorfield Primary School - Credit: Archant

A primary school has achieved the one in 14,000 feat of leaping from ‘special measures’ to receiving an ‘outstanding’ rating by a schools watchdog in the space of just 16 months.

Manorfield Primary School, in Poplar, was judged inadequate by Ofsted in February 2012 – but following an inspection in July this year, the watchdog declared it ‘outstanding’.

Wendy Hick was drafted into the school, in Wyvis Street, on a temporary basis in March last year after Ofsted’s damning report.

She was then appointed permanently in January, and credited the school’s staff for the turnaround.

“They were an amazing staff group to work with; the whole school community have been fantastic,” Ms Hick said.

“It’s great for them to have been on that journey. They are just incredibly resilient to have gone through such an experience.”

The Ofsted report, published on Monday, praised the headteacher as an “exceptional leader”, adding that pupils’ behaviour and attitudes are “exceptional”.

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Since 2005, only 10 schools in England have moved from ‘special measures’ to ‘outstanding’ in the time between two inspections.

And Ms Hick pledged to keep up the good work achieved already at the school.

“You can’t sit still. At any school, or in any organisation, you have got to keep refreshing yourself and looking at what you need to do next.”

Tower Hamlets Council’s cabinet member for children, schools and families, Cllr Oliur Rahman, added: “Praise is due to everybody involved. Instead of letting their heads drop after the previous inspection, they rolled their sleeves up and made a determined effort to improve things themselves.”