New Hope team praised by inspectors

Ofsted inspectors have praised the ‘exceptional’ leadership of new Hope
Academy Principal Patrick Ferguson and his team following the Newton
school’s latest inspection – which saw it upgraded from ‘inadequate’ to

The impact made by the incoming Hope team has been dramatic. Effectiveness of leadership and management; quality of teaching, learning and assessment and personal development, behaviour and welfare were all graded ‘good’ following last month’s inspection.

In their report inspectors said: “Teachers are utterly committed to
improving their practice and providing the best quality education they can
for their pupils. Their dedication and the high-quality training programmes
they receive mean that teaching is now good overall.

“The quality of support and care for pupils is outstanding. Staff are
highly responsive to pupils’ academic and personal needs.”

The leadership team still has work to do however. Outcomes for pupils and 16-19 study programmes were both deemed as ‘requiring improvement’. Yet the overall picture is one of steady improvement.

“Leaders have a thorough and precise view of the quality of teaching and
the progress pupils make,” added a spokesman for the inspection team. “They act swiftly to challenge and support staff and pupils alike. Consequently, outcomes are steadily improving.”

Hope Academy, which opened in 2011, is jointly sponsored by the Catholic Archdiocese of Liverpool, the Church of England Diocese of Liverpool and Liverpool Hope University.

St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Education and Lifelong Learning,
Councillor Jeanette Banks said: “This is a very encouraging report and
further underlines the progress that is being made in our secondary

“The Principal and his team have clearly worked hard to turn things around
at Hope and we applaud their efforts. The real winners though are the
students – who will benefit from the improving outcomes highlighted by the
Ofsted inspectors.”