Pupil referral unit ‘progress’

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A PUPIL referral unit, which was branded ‘inadequate’, is showing signs of improvement, according to watchdogs.

The Albany Centre, in Bury St Edmunds, has undergone a staffing overhaul after being told to improve by Ofsted last September in areas such as the leadership and management of teaching and learning assessment.

A monitoring inspection conducted earlier this month has now found the Beard Road facility to be making ‘satisfactory progress in addressing the issues for improvement and in raising the students’ achievement’.

In a letter to the headteacher, additional inspector Bill Stoneham said: “The centre, after a period of considerable uncertainty and inconsistent results, is moving forward.

“Teaching is stronger, a better curriculum is being established, attendance and behaviour are improving and the use of assessment data is more sophisticated and is driving progress.”

He added that further improvements were planned to the centre’s building and site, which would ‘enable further curriculum development and provide better teaching facilities’.

Cllr Graham Newman, Suffolk County Council’s portfolio holder for schools, said a new acting head, executive head and chairman of the management committee had been appointed to help address the issues.