A RENEWED focus on the quality of teaching at Commonweal School has seen it retain its good rating by Ofsted.

The education regulator stopped by the Okus school over two days in November to inspect a number of areas including leadership, teaching, pupil behaviour and outcomes as well as personal development.

This week staff and students have been jumping with joy after Ofsted informed the school that they continue to remain at a good level.

In the report, lead inspector Paul Williams praised headteacher Robert Linnegar who took up the full-time position in September.

He said: “The new headteacher has made improving the quality of teaching his first priority. He has an ambitious vision for the school, to raise pupils’ achievement while maintaining the spirit of inclusion which already runs throughout the school.

“Senior leaders share the headteacher’s vision.

“The school has effective methods for monitoring its effectiveness and setting an agenda for raising the quality of education it provides for pupils. Any weak teaching or slippage in pupils’ progress is identified and tackled head on.”

Mr Williams also praised the school’s effective safeguarding arrangements as well as the way senior leaders have strengthened the culture of vigilance at Commonweal.

He added: “The new headteacher and senior leaders have brought a renewed focus on the quality of teaching, learning and assessment. This has enabled teachers to reflect on their work and seek improvements. Teachers’ expectations of what pupils can achieve are now higher and this is leading to pupils making better progress.

“In recent years, pupils’ achievements in GCSE English and mathematics have been strong; however, last year, this was not the case. Senior leaders have reacted quickly to ensure that current pupils’ achievements are better.

“The quality of teaching in the sixth form matches that in the main school. The majority of teaching is well planned and helps students to learn quickly. Teachers have developed the same inclusive and caring approach as in the rest of the school. For this reason, students feel well supported if they struggle with academic work.”

However, to gain the highly sought-after outstanding status, Ofsted say Commonweal needs to ensure that teachers have more opportunities to discuss and share good teaching strategies as well as increasing the level of challenge in science, particularly for the most able.

Commonweal headteacher Robert Linnegar said: “We are an ambitious, restless and inclusive learning community, constantly trying to improve the education that we offer the students at Commonweal, and we are therefore particularly proud of the success that we had in improving the life chances of our scholars’ post 18.

“We have high expectations of our students both in the classroom and beyond and the inspection team saw that students in the school are ‘’learning well and making good progress.’

“The Commonweal Way is a charter by which our students conduct themselves and it has meant that behaviour, respect for each other and raised confidence helps to ensure effective learning outcomes.”