‘Not fit for purpose’: Ofsted report slams Gorton school after inspectors see students fighting during latest visit

A Gorton school has been slammed by Ofsted after inspectors witnessed pupils fighting during their latest visit.

The school watchdog previously ordered Cedar Mount Academy to take special measures to improve standards and scheduled another inspection to monitor its progress.

After Ofsted’s latest visit, however, inspectors have again found major problems at the school.

Concerns include violence between students and a high turnover of staff.

Inspectors added that pupils said a fight takes place at least once a week at the academy.

The report said: “During a transition between lessons on the mathematics corridor, the inspector observed behaviour which gave great cause for concern.

“Despite the high number of staff present, Year 7 pupils were barging into classrooms, shouting and fighting.

“They were blatantly ignoring the staff who were trying to deal with the situation.”

The report, published in January, also states that Cedar Mount Academy’s action plan is ‘not fit for purpose’.

It adds: “The bravado that many pupils exhibit, for example boasting about how many detentions they have been given and not attended, is clear proof that the system is not working.”

The inspector added that behaviour in some classes was so bad that pupils were making no progress at all.

According to the report, over a third of teachers at the academy were supply staff at the time of inspection.

The inspector said: “The considerable amount of staff turnover means that pupils are not benefiting from consistently high-quality teaching.

“Some Year 11 pupils spoke to the inspectors about how worried they are about how this is affecting them, at this important stage of their education.”

The latest report comes after Cedar Mount Academy was rated ‘inadequate’ last April.

A spokesperson for Cedar Mount Academy said: “Since the Ofsted inspection, a number of measures have been put in place, which include the introduction of new procedures to combat behaviour issues and create calmer environments.

“The Academy has also appointed new senior leaders and secured specialist support for individual pupils.

“Additional engagement with parents has ensured that they are involved more directly in supporting pupil progress and creating a positive overall vision for the continued improvement of the Academy.”

The spokesperson added that Manchester City Council has conducted an independent review of the school since the Ofsted report.

He said: “A relentless recruitment drive has enabled the Academy to appoint a number of high quality staff and we remain committed to securing an outstanding team to take the Academy forward on its journey.

“While this continued improvement demonstrates that the school is moving in the right direction, we recognise that there is still work to be done.”

Image courtesy of Google Maps, with thanks.

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