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EDITORS THOUGHT
FIVE ISLANDS SCHOOL 'OUTSTANDING'

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The Five Islands School has been classed as “outstanding” in every respect after a recent inspection by Ofsted.

It was given the grade 1 rating in all categories - achievements /standards, personal development and well-being, quality of provision, including teaching, leadership / management and care, guidance and support.

“The Five Islands is an outstanding school and the children and young people educated there are a credit to this unique island community,” the report said.

The glowing appraisal comes four years after the school was placed in ‘special measures’ following an Ofsted inspection which found more than 12% of teaching and 20% pupil learning to be unsatisfactory.

The school, which has 277 pupils aged from four to 16, is a federation of the four former primary schools and the former Isles of Scilly Secondary School.

Three inspectors visited all the school sites during a two-day visit. They observed all teachers, spoke to pupils and had several meetings with staff.

The report said pupils were confident, motivated and enjoyed all aspects of their learning, and that the curriculum was "greatly enriched" by the dedication of staff.

It added that the head teacher and his team provided outstanding capacity for further improvement, and that "outstanding relationships" between the school's staff and pupils were key to success and “evident in all its work”.

It noted that the federation system, which came into effect in 2002, had taken time to become embedded, but added it “created many challenges but also affords the school many opportunities.”

The only area for improvement was inadequacies in the accommodation at the Carn Thomas base, which had the "potential to constrain innovative curriculum
development.” However, plans are currently under way for a new school to be built.

Headteacher Andrew Penman said he was "absolutely thrilled" by the report.

"They are the fruit of four years' hard work by a large team of people and it is great to have the improvement that this school has made in that time recognised in this way," he told The Cornishman newspaper.