The Financial Times is reporting that a school in an disadvantaged area in London has been recently marked as Outstanding by Ofsted.
Forest Gate Community School was just another underperforming London secondary school when Simon Elliott took over as headteacher five years ago. By some measures, it is now one of Britain’s best.
Pupils there achieve a full extra grade of progress beyond the national average during their school careers, placing Forest Gate in the top 1 per cent of English schools for this new benchmark.
Recent test scores were its best yet. And not only did Ofsted, the schools review body, award it an “outstanding” rating but its leader, Sir Michael Wilshaw, singled out Mr Elliott’s “exemplary leadership” and a “transformed” Forest Gate in his final report.
What is so remarkable is that the school has achieved such results in the middle of London’s most diverse borough — where 86 per cent of last year’s births were to at least one foreign-born parent — and also one of its poorest. More than half the 1,070 students are classed as “disadvantaged” yet they outperform wealthier children nationally.
Such success is a source of pride for Newham, a deprived borough that more commonly tops league tables in categories such as homelessness and tuberculosis.
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