Sweet reward for kids

Bennerley Fields celebrate with icecream. from left Alex Farmer, 13, Darcy Leigh Ferris, eight, Headteacher Debbie Gerring, James Brown, 15, teaching assistant Jo Cook and Hugh Wolverson, seven.
Bennerley Fields celebrate with icecream. from left Alex Farmer, 13, Darcy Leigh Ferris, eight, Headteacher Debbie Gerring, James Brown, 15, teaching assistant Jo Cook and Hugh Wolverson, seven.

Pupils at a special school were treated to ice cream after ‘enormous’ improvements have seen their school taken out of special measures.

After an ‘inadequate’ rating from Ofsted in January last year, Bennerley Fields in Cotmanhay has worked hard to move up to a ‘requires improvement’ rating.

Headteacher Debbie Gerring said she was ‘delighted’ with the report, published on Tuesday, and praised the hard work of pupils, staff, parents and governors.

“This is an amazing achievement in a very short space of time,” she said.

“Our pupils have grown in confidence on this journey and begun to shine.

“School has a buzz of excitement in learning which is supported by our fantastic and skilful staff team.”

The report paid tribute to Ms Gerring, who had only been in the job for three weeks at the time of the last inspection, for challenging staff to do better.

Ofsted’s lead inspector Sue Morris-King wrote: “The school has improved enormously over the last year.”

“Many lessons are interesting, exciting and meet pupils’ needs well,” she added.

Head girl at the Stratford Street school, Alex Farmer, 13, agreed: “It’s better because now we can have more choices and the learning is more exciting.

“The school looks brighter and everyone is happy.

“I think we are at the best school now.”

But there were some areas where the school could improve, the report said, particularly for pupils aged between 14 and 16.

“In Key Stage 4 students’ achievement requires improvement because there is not enough good teaching and the students do not have clear enough targets for each subject,” added Ms Morris-King.

On the first day back after the Easter holidays on Monday, Ms Gerring organised for an ice cream van to visit the school as a reward for pupils’ hard work in helping to achieve the rating.