University of Chester Academy Northwich gets lowest rating for overall effectiveness

Head defends UCAN

Head defends UCAN

First published in News
Last updated

SPECIAL measures are needed at the University of Chester Academy, Northwich, to address inadequate leadership, teaching and achievement, say OFSTED inspectors.

The 496-pupil academy is rated inadequate in all but one of the areas it was assessed on during an inspection in February, and requiring improvement for pupils’ behaviour and safety.

It was awarded a rating of four for overall effectiveness, quality of teaching, achievement of pupils and leadership and management.

The rating system ranges from one to four, from outstanding to inadequate, with three representing requiring improvement.

The inspection was the first since the former Rudheath High School became an academy in 2012.

Following publication of the OFSTED report, UCAN principal Matthew Wood pledged that the academy will do all it can to again become one of the most improved schools in the region.

“UCAN’s students achieving at least three Levels of Progress are among the highest throughout University of Chester Academies Trust, with 66 per cent in English, from 38 per cent in 2011/12, and 59 per cent in maths, from 47 per cent in 2011/12,” said Mr Wood.

“Although significant the rate of improvement has been judged to be insufficiently fast. This has resulted in the Academy’s inadequate rating.

“There are a number of measures that have already been put in place since the latest OFSTED inspection, which build upon the many changes introduced over recent months and years.”

These include action plans to address all aspects of the academy’s work and new appointments to the senior leadership team.

“UCAN has already come a long way on its journey, but it takes time to make important changes to the culture of a long-established organisation,” added Mr Wood.

The inspection team found leaders and governors had too generous a view of how well the academy was performing, and teachers generally did not assess students’ work accurately enough.

OFSTED will make recommendations on governance to the authority which is responsible for the academy.

The school said it achieved 56 per cent A* to C in English and 59 per cent A* to C in maths in 2012/13.

“However due to disappointing science results UCAN achieved 39 per cent, which meant its average score fell narrowly under the Government’s threshold by one per cent,” said an academy spokesman.

“Under the new more stringent OFSTED framework no school can be categorised higher than a grade four (inadequate) overall under these circumstances.”

Comments (7)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:42am Thu 3 Apr 14

philtiger says...

My grandson started at Rudheath last summer and has come on leaps and bounds with his education.
Ofstead have been branded inept and having poor quality inspectors by the government,and are being overhauled ,so do we believe.
Personally i think Rudheath is doing a fine job keep up the goodwork
My grandson started at Rudheath last summer and has come on leaps and bounds with his education. Ofstead have been branded inept and having poor quality inspectors by the government,and are being overhauled ,so do we believe. Personally i think Rudheath is doing a fine job keep up the goodwork philtiger
  • Score: 5

10:36pm Thu 3 Apr 14

Snuglies says...

I have to say that I think the OFSTED report is is totally inaccurate. After a long decision of looking at all of the 3 high schools in the area UCAN came out tops overall. Mr Wood is doing a sterling job and has shown excellent leadership since taking the helm. Since my daughter started last September she has come along nicely and there is nothing i could say against the teaching, leadership or security of the children.
I have to say that I think the OFSTED report is is totally inaccurate. After a long decision of looking at all of the 3 high schools in the area UCAN came out tops overall. Mr Wood is doing a sterling job and has shown excellent leadership since taking the helm. Since my daughter started last September she has come along nicely and there is nothing i could say against the teaching, leadership or security of the children. Snuglies
  • Score: 4

4:50pm Sat 5 Apr 14

DaisyJane says...

The ofsted report does not show a true picture of the school. My son has been there for 5 years and I cannot speak highly enough of the teaching, care & support the school has given. When he started our expectations of my son passing 1 GCSE would have been an achievement & now he has far exceeded our expectations & that is because of the time & effort of the teaching & support staff at UCAN.
The ofsted report does not show a true picture of the school. My son has been there for 5 years and I cannot speak highly enough of the teaching, care & support the school has given. When he started our expectations of my son passing 1 GCSE would have been an achievement & now he has far exceeded our expectations & that is because of the time & effort of the teaching & support staff at UCAN. DaisyJane
  • Score: 4

6:44pm Sat 5 Apr 14

harrassed69 says...

Have these comments been written by the same person?? My child is in Y11 and we feel they have been treated terribly. No proper science lessons, staff leaving in the middle of term. Only just been given physics lessons. Having to attend school during the easter break to make up for what they have not been taught in lessons. Having teachers coming into classes late, the list goes on and on, the truth about the school will unfortunately be seen when the results are published, however this will be to late for Y11
Have these comments been written by the same person?? My child is in Y11 and we feel they have been treated terribly. No proper science lessons, staff leaving in the middle of term. Only just been given physics lessons. Having to attend school during the easter break to make up for what they have not been taught in lessons. Having teachers coming into classes late, the list goes on and on, the truth about the school will unfortunately be seen when the results are published, however this will be to late for Y11 harrassed69
  • Score: 1

8:04pm Sat 5 Apr 14

philtiger says...

harrassed69 wrote:
Have these comments been written by the same person?? My child is in Y11 and we feel they have been treated terribly. No proper science lessons, staff leaving in the middle of term. Only just been given physics lessons. Having to attend school during the easter break to make up for what they have not been taught in lessons. Having teachers coming into classes late, the list goes on and on, the truth about the school will unfortunately be seen when the results are published, however this will be to late for Y11
definitely not written by the same people
[quote][p][bold]harrassed69[/bold] wrote: Have these comments been written by the same person?? My child is in Y11 and we feel they have been treated terribly. No proper science lessons, staff leaving in the middle of term. Only just been given physics lessons. Having to attend school during the easter break to make up for what they have not been taught in lessons. Having teachers coming into classes late, the list goes on and on, the truth about the school will unfortunately be seen when the results are published, however this will be to late for Y11[/p][/quote]definitely not written by the same people philtiger
  • Score: 3

5:53pm Mon 7 Apr 14

Galebpink@gmail.com says...

My son started ucan in September and up to now i can not fault them,I have never took any notice of ofsted as I think it' is an out dated organisation my opinion, what I do take notice of is my child who is happy and learning so much,it's not perfect but no school is but really think the report is unfair . if I have needed to get intouch the parent teacher relationship is excellent , therefore I will be supporting Mr Woods and his staff and his decisions .
My son started ucan in September and up to now i can not fault them,I have never took any notice of ofsted as I think it' is an out dated organisation my opinion, what I do take notice of is my child who is happy and learning so much,it's not perfect but no school is but really think the report is unfair . if I have needed to get intouch the parent teacher relationship is excellent , therefore I will be supporting Mr Woods and his staff and his decisions . Galebpink@gmail.com
  • Score: 3

6:14am Wed 9 Apr 14

nicksey says...

Mt daughter started high school last September, we visited 3 local schools including this one before deciding. Rudheath was very quickly ruled out. Not only did it have the lowest results of the 3, but our visit left us in no doubt that we would not be sending her there. The staff were at best not interested, we walked around the school on the open evening by ourselves not one member of staff even bothered to acknowledge our presence. We arrived, walked around the school and then left without anyone even speaking to us. If thats how they treat prospective parents how do they treat their students?
Mt daughter started high school last September, we visited 3 local schools including this one before deciding. Rudheath was very quickly ruled out. Not only did it have the lowest results of the 3, but our visit left us in no doubt that we would not be sending her there. The staff were at best not interested, we walked around the school on the open evening by ourselves not one member of staff even bothered to acknowledge our presence. We arrived, walked around the school and then left without anyone even speaking to us. If thats how they treat prospective parents how do they treat their students? nicksey
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree