Brighton and Hove councillors urge Ofsted to reinspect Moulsecoomb Primary School

Councillors are urging Ofsted to reinspect Moulsecoomb Primary School to “evidence the improvements it has made” since the official watchdog rated it “inadequate”.

And they are calling on the Conservative government’s Education Secretary Gavin Williamson to revoke the order to turn the school into an academy.

Members of Brighton and Hove City Council are due to debate a motion about the school’s future at Hove Town Hall on Thursday night (19 December).

The debate is due to take place just days after New Horizons Academy Trust became the latest potential sponsor to decide against running the school.

Labour councillor Kate Knight, who represents Moulsecoomb and Bevendean ward, is proposing the motion, calling on council chief executive Geoff Raw to write to the Education Secretary.

Councillor Knight, the deputy chair of the council’s Children, Young People and Skills Committee, said: “The council now has a significant amount of evidence of improvement, demonstrating the school is not ‘inadequate’. This includes improved attendance and outcome data at all key stages.

“Notes of visits from ‘national leaders of education’ and experienced school partnership advisers comment on improvements in teaching and learning and behaviour for learning.

“This council believes that only the local authority (Brighton and Hove City Council) has the capacity and the resources, including support from ‘good’ and ‘outstanding’ schools across the city, to support this school longer term.

“This council is confident that the school has improved to the extent that academisation is unnecessary and that a reinspection by Ofsted would reflect this.”

Fellow Labour councillor Nick Childs, the former chair of the Children, Young People and Skills Committee, is seconding the motion.

The motion says: “This council asks the chief executive to write to the Secretary of State for Education to outline the following points regarding the proposed academisation of Moulsecoomb Primary School

1) This council notes with concern the proposed sponsor (that was selected without any consultation with the governing body or parents) New Horizons Academy Trust’s poor record on improving other schools and wishes to highlight uncovered documents that show that NHAT has already acknowledged that Brighton and Hove City Council and (the) current head teacher at Moulsecoomb (are) rapidly improving the school.

2) This council stands with and respects the views of the parents, carers, teachers, unions and children of Moulsecoomb Primary. We respect their voice and their opposition to the academisation plan as evidenced by the 96 per cent parental ballot rejecting it and the subsequent industrial action.

3) This council notes the local cross-party opposition to these academisation plans.

4) This council urges Ofsted to reinspect the school, to provide an opportunity to evidence the improvements it has made since the previous inspection.

5) This council urges the Secretary of State to revoke the academisation order.”

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