Wakefield: Teaching union blasts damning Ofsted report

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A teaching union has blasted a new Ofsted report which puts Wakefield primary schools in the bottom five of a national league table of schools.

Education watchdogs at Ofsted say just 52 per cent of children in Wakefield district attend a primary school classed as ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’.

Camden in London came out top in the same category of Ofsted’s annual report with 92 per cent while Coventry was bottom with 42 per cent.

The figure for primary schools in Leeds was 68 per cent.

Ofsted chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw said the league tables highlighted stark differences in standards, which were leading to “serious inequalities” for millions of children.

Sally Kincaid, divisional secretary of Wakefield and District NUT, said: “Ofsted has been used like a political tool to scare schools into becoming academies. There is no evidence that academies improve pupil attainment.

“Furthermore, as more schools become academies the local authority has little or no influence. At the same time savage Government cuts have resulted in less support for schools.”

She added: “School staff and pupils work very hard in this district and should not be used as a political football by the Government in order to promote their agenda of privatisation and breaking up of local authorities.”

Jim Crook, Wakefield Council’s corporate director for family services, said: “The performance shown in this table is clearly not good enough.

“We have been working extremely hard to tackle the issues and help our primary schools improve.

“This has already resulted in significantly better results this year and the current percentage of children now attending good or outstanding primary schools has risen to 58 per cent. We are absolutely determined to deliver the highest standard of education for our children and are committed to working with all schools to help them continue to improve.”