Academies praised by Ofsted

THE HASTINGS Academy and The St Leonards Academy have been praised by Ofsted inspectors, and been rated “good” within two years of opening.

The academies replaced three schools (Hilcrest, The Grove and Filsham Valley) that were among the worst performing in the country, so the report, published today (Friday, June 7), marks a turn-around.

Having opened in 2011 with the University of Brighton as lead sponsor, and East Sussex County Council and BT as co-sponsors, they were inspected for the first time last month.

The principals of both academies, senior personnel and directors were recognised for driving up outcomes for students.

The report for The St Leonards Academy stated: “Students’ progress has accelerated from very low starting points,” and that teaching had “a significant impact on students’ rapidly improving progress because of well-planned and prepared lessons.”

Principal of The St Leonards Academy, Jenny Jones, said: “We are all so proud of this achievement which recognises our remarkable progress since opening in September 2011. The students and staff from the two predecessor schools have shown outstanding commitment to The St Leonards Academy and a real sense of pride in being part of our journey of rapid improvement.

The report for The Hastings Academy noted: “Students’ achievement is improving rapidly. Teaching is good and as a result, students throughout the academy are now learning well.”

Principal of The Hastings Academy, Theresa Phillips, said: “I am delighted that the hard work and commitment of the academy’s staff and students has been recognised by Ofsted. We have ambitious plans for The Hastings Academy and want to build on this success.”

The full reports can be found at