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Big results require big ambitions
Provisional performance tables were released this week just gone allowing information in the public domain for all state schools across the UK. After initial number crunching from the government, we were informed that our provisional data for progress, a key measure, increased to +0.59, placing us as the number one school at the top of all Haringey Secondary schools for progress.
New measures are complicated, and you have to be as brilliant as Mr Ali, our amazing assistant head, to fully track the many changes and impact of these. Essentially, this measure means that schools get judged on how well each student progresses from its starting point, rather than the number of pupils who gain A*-Cs. It means that schools are accountable for all students across all ability ranges, rather than being able to concentrate on those high performing students that always make the headlines. What our progress measure shows us, is that students make, on average, at least over half a grade or progress from the challenging targets schools are set. In English, it’s even more impressive, with students making on average a grade and more than their predictions.
Haringey is a unique borough to work in. Head teachers of all types of school have a camaraderie that I have never experienced elsewhere. However, we also have a very very healthy dose of competition and are keen to balance the support for each other with the natural edge that comes from competing with each other across the many similar areas we work across. I was touched by receiving an email soon after the tables were released from a fellow headteacher, used to being one of the top performing schools in the borough congratulating the school on being the highest achieving in Haringey with the title ‘Damnation’ The message was characteristically supportive and humorous, and I think it says much about the borough that someone so used to success could so freely give praise to another, because although we are used to high performance and achieving well, we’ve never quite managed as a school to be in pole position. You can see what schools across the borough achieved here https://www.compare-school-performance.service.gov.uk/schools-by-type?step=phase®ion=309&geographic=la&phase=secondary&for=secondary
For us this is a great marker that the changes we’ve put in place are having impact for both our staff and student body. We know we are achieving well, but this doesn’t limit us and its doesn’t stop. Our ambitions for our students remain undimmed. It’s great to get so many indicators of our success, be it Ofsted in March, or our results this year, or seeing the students flourish in their time here. It’s lovely to take a moment to reflect on our achievements and pause to congratulate everyone in the school community. Success is always a team effort.
However, it doesn’t stop us wanting more, to be bigger, better, greater. If we cap our ambitions for the school, we cap our ambitions for your children. It doesn’t enter our thinking that we can rest on our laurels. By doing so, we would be taking for granted the immense trust our families place in us to enhance and support our students to be the best version of themselves they can be. The school is led by a senior leadership team with excellent skills and ambitions with this understanding as a touchstone, a value that holds firm for us all. So to Ms Rooke, Mr Ali, Ms Clarke, Mr Davies, and Ms Hewitt, thank you for being a fantastic, committed and dedicated senior leadership team, with a passion for ensuring our students excel.
We will continue to strive for more, not for our benefit as a school, but for the continued success of our students in a challenging and competitive world.
Reminder: This is the last blog of the term. Monday 30th is an Inset day so students return to us on the 31st Oct