Debbie Gibbs and some students celebrate after being rated by Ofsted as a 'Good' school in April 2022

KB Academy is celebrating after being rated Good in all areas by Ofsted.
Inspectors said pupils, staff and leaders were enthusiastic about the ‘unique’ school and its specialism in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

“Pupils feel valued at IKB. They say staff know them very well and as a result they feel supported to do their best. Some pupils told us their experience at IKB has renewed their enthusiasm for learning,” the report said.
Three inspectors from the education watchdog visited IKB on April 5 and 6.

Their very positive findings included:

  • Leaders have an ambitious vision for the school
  • Teachers have high expectations in all curriculum areas
  • Teachers have strong subject knowledge and use it well to plan learning
  • Pupils feel safe in school and say bullying is not an issue
  • Pupils value the guidance they receive about careers
  • Pupils with special educational needs and disabilities are supported well

Inspectors noted the school’s intention to give young people experiences of the world of work to enhance their learning of the STEM-focused curriculum and to develop their interests. While this ‘important aspect of the school’s offer’ had been affected by the pandemic, school leaders were beginning to rebuild it. Year 10 students were out on work experience at the time of the visit.

Ofsted praised the support given to the personal development of the 162 students, who are aged 14-19. This included a comprehensive personal, social and health education (PSHE) curriculum and leadership opportunities for sixth-formers. Inspectors said children felt safe in school and knew they could talk to someone if they had concerns.

The report also highlighted the contribution of Futura Learning Partnership to the school’s success. “Leaders are well supported by the trust. Staff welcome opportunities for professional development with their colleagues across the trust. Teachers say leaders are considerate of staff workload and wellbeing,” it said. Head of school Debbie Gibbs said she was delighted at the inspectors’ findings, which rated IKB as Good for quality of education, behaviour and attitudes, personal development, leadership and management and sixth-form provision.

“This is an important milestone for IKB Academy and is a tribute to the hard work of our staff team and our students with the support of families, the community, and the trust,” she said.

“I am so pleased that our students were able to talk with enthusiasm about their learning and experiences at IKB and that the strengths of our provision were recognised by the inspectors.

“We are ambitious for all our students and do all we can to ensure they have the knowledge, skills and experience to succeed.”

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