Millbrook Academy

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Millbrook Academy
Motto Learning for Success
Established 1967
Principal Lesley Moule
Location Mill Lane
Gloucester
Gloucestershire
GL3 4QF
England
Coordinates: 51°50′53″N 2°08′56″W / 51.84819°N 2.14880°W / 51.84819; -2.14880
DfE URN 137690 Tables
Ofsted Reports Pre-academy reports
Students 600
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–18
Houses Hoy Simmonds, Farah Storey, Ennis Weir, Murray Whitehead
Website www.millbrookacademy.org

Millbrook Academy is a co-educational, fully comprehensive 11 to 18 academy in Gloucestershire, England. It is sponsored by the Academies Enterprise Trust.

About the school[edit]

The Brockworth Comprehensive school was founded in 1967, situated on countryside overlooked by the Cotswold Hills. The school served the catchment areas of Brockworth, Hucclecote, Upton St Leonards, the eastern suburbs of the City of Gloucester and the rural areas to the east extending up onto the Cotswold Hills.

In 2010 OFSTED stated that Brockworth was inadequate and placed it in special measures.[1] In order to put the special measures behind it, the school converted to an Academy with Academies Enterprise Trust as the Sponsor.[2] AET had hoped originally hoped to also be involved in the running of Gloucester Academy, with David Fuller from AET taking over at Gloucester College as Executive Principal.[3]

In order to help ensure the success of the new Millbrook Academy, in 2012 Gloucestershire County Council funded a £3.4m development of science labs and other teaching facilities.[4] Immediately after this redevelopment the school transferred into the Academies Enterprise Trust. The Principal, Jan Scott stated at the time:

We achieved our best ever exam results and a very positive Ofsted inspection confirmed the rapid rate of progress being made. The new development is one of a number of changes and enhancements we are making linked to our move this month to academy status, sponsored by Academies Enterprise Trust (AET). It will offer a fantastic environment for our students to learn and develop their skills.[5]

In 2014 there was a proposal to build and open a new school (Greenfield Academy) for children with behavioural difficulties on land adjoining Millbrook Academy.The new proposed school would have been a partnership between Academies Enterprise Trust and Gloucestershire County Council[6] Malcolm Reeve on behalf of AET initially spoke of the plans for the new school to work closely with Millbrook,[7] but AET was then banned by the Department for Education from expanding until it could raise standards in the Academies which it already had.[8] When local residents objected to the proposed new school, AET was unavailable to comment.[9]

The headteacher up until September 2009 was Paul Elliott.[10] He was replaced by Jan Scott, who had previously been a deputy headteacher at Merchants Academy in Bristol.[11] She remained in post until a disappointing OFSTED in February 2015.[12] A new interim Principal, Roger Gilbert, took over. He had previously worked at Yate International Academy[13] In October 2015 Libby Nicholas, the AET Southern Regional Director of Education wrote to parents to confirm that the new Principal from January 2016 would be Lesley Moule, supported by Dean Anderson as Executive Principal (From Sept 2015).[14]

Millbrook Academy has 600 students with a Sixth Form of 100 students. There are over 40 teaching staff.

Academic standards[edit]

5GCSES A-C (including English and Maths) accurate as of Nov 2015 and taken from School and College Performance Tables[15]
Academy Name 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 OFSTED Grade DfE Warning or Pre Warning
Millbrook Academy 55% 51% 54% 24% 27%[16] Requires Improvement[17] 20 Oct 2015[18]
National Maintained Schools 59% 59% 60% 57% 56%

This table shows data marked in darker grey which relates to the period of time before the school became an AET Academy. Exam results marked in red are those which fall below the minimum standards expected by the Department for Education floor target,[19] The OFSTED grade is marked red if it indicates that the school needs to improve. If the school has a letter from the Department for Education stating that standards are 'unacceptably low' that is also marked in red.

The first set of results after converting from Brockworth school and becoming Millbrook Academy were lauded in the local community, with strong A level results,[20] and equally strong GCSE results. The Principal Jan Scott stated

We are extremely proud of the summer exam results. They clearly reflect the excellent learning attitudes of our students. The results are a credit to both students and staff who work so incredibly hard. Millbrook Academy continues to offer a curriculum that enables students to flourish and to achieve their full potential.[21]

However the data table above shows that over time Millbrook results have declined very considerably, to the point that in 2015 the Academy initially did not want to release its exam results when other local schools were doing so.[22]

In 2013 OFSTED noted concerns about the teaching of Maths[23] and stated more generally:

There is too much variability in the quality of teaching, including in the sixth form. Over time, teaching has not been sufficiently good to ensure that students make good progress, particularly in mathematics. While inspectors saw examples of good and elements of outstanding practice, this is not prevalent across the school and, as a result, students’ progress in some lessons is limited.[24]

In 2014 OFSTED noted improvements had occurred, but also that aspects of poor student behaviour were continuing to hold back further attempts to raise standards.

However, the attitudes and behaviour of a small minority of students in too many lessons still requires improvement. Where poor behaviour was observed, it was often a consequence of weaknesses in planning and teaching. Those students showing poor behaviour were often unclear about what they were meant to be doing; had difficulty with the work because, for example, their low reading ages had not been taken into account; or were responding to provocations from other students that had not been dealt with effectively by the teacher[25]

In 2015 the Regional Schools' commissioner wrote to Ian Comfort the CEO of Academies Enterprise Trust stating that the educational standards are unacceptably low at Millbrook Academy. He stated:

while the academy has improved aspects of educational provision, further improvement is needed and the rate of improvement is too slow... it was clear that improvements were being made but significant issues remain and are likely to continue for the foreseeable future... [26]

Parental ranking of the school placed it as 12th in the local area.[27] Parents interviewed by the local media expressed concerns about exam results and other aspects, stating

It is not just these figures that are a growing concern, it is the amount of supply teachers that my child has had and the behaviour is appalling with swearing and generally unruly behaviour."[28]

In December 2015 a teacher of the Academy spoke out in public about poor standards, stating

We're disappointed the results are catastrophically bad again, but we as a staff we knew it was going to happen... Children's chances of a better life are being ruined. Our community deserves better than this.[29]

Mike Barnett, speaking on behalf of the Academies Enterprise Trust responded to the public criticism of standards at the Academy by saying that "raising standards quickly at the school was the highest priority."[30]


Extra curricular activities[edit]

The School has called upon sixth form students to help improve literacy by mentoring younger pupils[31]

In October 2015 the Academy collaborated with Everyman Theatre so that BTEc students in Performing Arts could have an experience of what is involved in putting on a play.[32] The Academy had also put in place careers education with employer fairs to help students identify potential careers.[33]

In the Spring of 2015 the Academy took part in Famelab, to develop science skills.[34]

In 2015 the Academy entered into a partnership to host the local Military Preparation College on its site.[35]

Facilities[edit]

The facilities of the school have been provided to cater for the full age and ability range and include:

- Central Learning Resource Centre with over 300 networked PCs across the school. - Post 16 Centre with social and study areas for the students. This has been substantially improved as part of the Business and Enterprise plans. - Drama/Music Hall with seating for 400. - Sports Centre with Indoor Swimming Pool, Sports Hall, Gym, Dance Studio, Floodlit All Weather Sports Pitch (Under Construction), Tennis Courts and Extensive Playing Fields. - All department areas are housed in purpose built specialist accommodation. Nearly all teachers have "their own" teaching room. - The school also has a Learning Support Department assisting in the programme of children who have learning difficulties.

The role of the Sponsor[edit]

Academies Enterprise Trust support for Academies at the local level is led by the AET Regional Director of Education (known as a RDE). The 2014 OFSTED report about AET explained that ‘some academy leaders said that there was too much variability in the support and challenge offered by Regional Directors employed by AET.'[36]

Until December 2015 the RDE for Millbrook Academy was Elizabeth (Libby) Nicholas. Libby Nicholas was previously a deputy headteacher at an Independent girls school Sutton High School and then an interim headteacher at independent girls school South Hampstead High School during the summer term in 2013.[37]

OFSTED stated will respect to the support provided by AET to Millbrook Academy

The academy is drawing on support from the Academies Enterprise Trust to improve standards in mathematics.[38]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "'Failure' Ofsted blow for school". Gloucestershire Echo. 20 May 2010. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  2. ^ "Millbrook Academy prepares to open doors". Gloucestercitizen. 5 Jan 2011. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  3. ^ "A clear curriculum focussing on future". 16 Jul 2010. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015.  See also "A New Academy for Gloucester". Gloucestercitizen. 11 Feb 2010. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  4. ^ "'Super lab' forms part of new £3.4m Brockworth science block". Gloucestershire Echo. 24 Sep 2012. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  5. ^ "£2.8m block build starts". Gloucestershire Echo. 2 Feb 2012. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  6. ^ "Plans revealed for academy school for students with behavioural difficulties in Brockworth Read". GloucesterCitizen. 9 Jul 2014. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  7. ^ "Plans revealed for academy school for students with behavioural difficulties in Brockworth Read". GloucesterCitizen. 9 Jul 2014. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  8. ^ Stewart, William (20 Mar 2014). "Problem academy chains 'not focusing on learning', as 14 are banned from expansion". Times Education Supplement. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  9. ^ "Objections raised over plans for new Greenfield Academy special school in Brockworth". Gloucestercitizen. 19 Nov 2014. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  10. ^ "New Brockworth head looks to future". Gloucestershire Echo. 4 Sep 2009. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  11. ^ "School fearing special measures named most improved". Gloucestershire Echo. 29 Mar 2010. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  12. ^ "Stand-in principal to reverse fortunes of Millbrook Academy where exam results are plummeting". Gloucester Citizen. 14 Mar 2015. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  13. ^ "Stand-in principal to reverse fortunes of Millbrook Academy where exam results are plummeting". Gloucestershire Echo. 16 Mar 2015. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  14. ^ "New Appointment of Principal and Executive Principal". AETinet. Academies Enterprise Trust. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  15. ^ "School and College Performance Tables". School and College Performance Tables. Department for Education. Retrieved 27 Nov 2015. 
  16. ^ "Millbrook Academy Results". School and College Performance Tables. Department for Education. Retrieved 28 Nov 2015. 
  17. ^ "Millbrook Academy Inspection Reports". OFSTED. OFSTED. Retrieved 28 Nov 2015. 
  18. ^ "Pre Warning Notice to the AET in relation to Millbrook Academy". Pre Warning Notice. Department for Education. Retrieved 28 Nov 2015. 
  19. ^ Adams, Richard (29 January 2015). "Number of English schools failing on GCSE targets doubles in a year". The Guardian. Retrieved 27 November 2015. 
  20. ^ "A level results day in Gloucestershire: results and pictures". Gloucestershire Echo. 16 Aug 2012. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  21. ^ "Brockworth school celebrates exam success". Gloucestershire Echo. 31 Jan 2013. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  22. ^ "GCSE Results Day 2015: Gloucester students jump for joy". Gloucestercitizen. 20 Aug 2015. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  23. ^ "How do schools in Gloucestershire compare by Ofsted results ?". Gloucestershire Echo. 9 Jul 2015. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  24. ^ "Millbrook Academy Inspection Reports". OFSTED. OFSTED. Retrieved 28 Nov 2015. 
  25. ^ "Millbrook Academy Inspection Reports". OFSTED. OFSTED. Retrieved 28 Nov 2015. 
  26. ^ "Pre Warning Notice to the AET in relation to Millbrook Academy". Pre Warning Notice. Department for Education. Retrieved 28 Nov 2015. 
  27. ^ "Cheltenham schools rated on new TripAdvisor-style website". Gloucestershire Echo. 2 Jun 2015. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  28. ^ "Stand-in principal to reverse fortunes of Millbrook Academy where exam results are plummeting". Gloucester Citizen. 14 Mar 2015. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  29. ^ "Education chiefs' damning letter to Millbrook Academy as teacher says pupils' chances being 'ruined'". Gloucestercitizen. 3 Dec 2015. Retrieved 3 Dec 2015. 
  30. ^ "Education chiefs' damning letter to Millbrook Academy as teacher says pupils' chances being 'ruined'". Gloucestercitizen. 3 Dec 2015. Retrieved 3 Dec 2015. 
  31. ^ "Sixth Formers to Mentor readers". Gloucestershire Echo. 21 Dec 2013. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  32. ^ "The Arts Column: Our education and community programme is one of the most valuable things we do". Gloucstershire Echo. 15 Oct 2015. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  33. ^ "Millbrook Academy students given helping hand onto career ladder". Gloucestershire Echo. 25 Feb 2013. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  34. ^ "Pupils from Millbrook Academy take to the stage for the finale of the FameLab competition". Gloucestercitizen. 8 Feb 2015. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  35. ^ "New Base for Local Military Preparation College". Military Preparation College. Military Preparation College. Retrieved 29 Nov 2015. 
  36. ^ "Inspections of academies within the Academies Enterprise Trust, a MultiAcademy Trust" (PDF). Gov.Uk. Department for Education. Retrieved 27 Nov 2015. 
  37. ^ Lamden, Tim (19 Apr 2013). "Headteacher of top Hampstead school makes mystery departure". Ham&High. Retrieved 27 Nov 2015. 
  38. ^ "Millbrook Academy Inspection Reports". OFSTED. OFSTED. Retrieved 28 Nov 2015. 

External links[edit]