Derbyshire County Council's work to improve schools to receive national recognition
WORK by Derbyshire County Council to support schools is set to receive national recognition later this year.
The council was one of only ten local authorities asked by Ofsted to take part in a survey highlighting good practice in helping schools to improve.
Inspectors spent two days visiting three Derbyshire schools – North Wingfield Primary, Highfields in Matlock and Heathfield Primary, Hatton.
They talked to head teachers and staff from the council's advisory service to find out how they worked together to raise standards.
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During their visit, they also spoke to 25 other head teachers and received dozens of e-mails praising the council's work to drive up attainment.
The inspectors' results – due to be published in the summer – will help other education authorities learn from the support offered to schools in Derbyshire.
Councillor Mike Longden, county council cabinet member for education, said: "It is an honour to be singled out in this way for our work.
"We are proud of our excellent track record in supporting schools as part of our Journey to Excellence strategy.
"All our schools have their own named adviser and a tailored programme of support based on their performance and needs.
"Our work is paying off. Eight infant and primary schools were removed from failing categories last year.
"In a very short space of time, four went on to be judged as 'good' – a very impressive turnaround. While a 'notice to improve' was not only removed from Highfields School in Matlock but it leapfrogged 'satisfactory' to be rated 'good' by Ofsted inspectors – all in just a year.
"Meanwhile, our key stage one and two pupils continue to perform well against their peers and we've seen some of the best outcomes for our youngest children in care.
"But we are not complacent and we know there's more to do as we progress on our journey to excellence."