Ofsted inspectors have heaped praise on a school that was struggling in special measures.
Sandy Upper School has leapt up two grades in its latest inspection, going from Grade 4 – special measures, to Grade 2, officially making it a good school.
This is an achievement that is almost unheard of nationallly, and the school is well on its way to becoming outstanding.
Balraj Hare, who has led the school since September 2012, said she was delighted with the results.
She said: “Sandy Upper is on a steep upward trajectory and we are very quickly becoming the first choice for most parents and students. There is much to celebrate.
“This year we have achieved great success and we have done so without conversion or any additional funding.”
She added: “My exceptional senior leadership team and my outstanding staff have worked tirelessly and have been instrumental in ensuring that my vision for an outstanding education for every Sandy Upper student becomes a reality as each day passes.
“I am immensely proud of my staff, students and wider school community for all that they have achieved this year, and they are to be highly commended for their determination, their hard work, their resilience and their outstanding teamwork.”
The report praised the school’s results in the November GCSE examinations, saying it was primarily because of high-quality teaching.
The report states: “By setting ambitious target grades in all subjects and across all year groups, the aspirations of students and expectations on staff have been raised in one fell swoop.
“Spectacular results in the November GCSE examinations dispelled any doubts that these were too ambitious.”
And it said that teaching had ‘improved beyond recognition’ since the last inspection’. It goes on to state that inadequate teaching has been eradicated and that there is now much outstanding teaching.
The report also says that behaviour is good and often exemplary, and makes particular note of the way students of different age groups get on.
It adds: “The principal and senior staff have transformed the school by focusing tirelessly on raising standards.”