The latest school performance tables were published last week which are a clear demonstration of the continued academic success of the College; after four years of continuous improvement we are the highest performing school in the County with respect to the percentage of our students who achieve five A*-C grades (89%). We are also the highest performing in respect of the ‘value added’ measure which demonstrates the ‘Outstanding’ progress students make whilst at the College. The national average is 1000; we achieved a score of 1014, indicating our students achieved two grades higher than the national average. I am sure you will agree that these results are indicative of the partnership between staff, parents and students which is such an important characteristic of this College. The league table for the College can be viewed here and for other local schools here.
However, this College will never be just about examination results. Around a quarter of students at the College learn a musical instrument and a similar number are involved in our drama and musical activities. The electives programme goes from strength to strength; when we asked students what they think of the courses, 93% of students agreed that they are the highlight of their week and that they learn a lot during the sessions.
We continue to encourage our students to develop wider skills; our success in the national youth speaking competition gives our students the opportunity to compete against both public schools and grammar schools in public speaking. We have so far, triumphed over several teams, including Uppingham School, to make it through to the regional finals.
You will also be aware that our partnership with Catmose Primary is going from strength to strength. The number of pupils on role has increased significantly in the last 12 months, to such an extent that we have employed two additional teaching staff. The Primary school has recently been inspected by an external consultant and was rated as being ‘Good’ with ‘Outstanding’ features. The academic success of the Primary School is also impressive; it reached the targets Ofsted set twelve months ago, a year early. The recent investments in ICT also make it one of the best equipped primary schools in the county. I have been so impressed by Catmose Primary that my wife and I have made the decision to apply for a place for my own daughter to start in September. It also demonstrates my own personal commitment to the College and to the Primary school for the long term.
The proposal to create a multi-academy trust that will be responsible for both schools, further demonstrates the long term commitment of both schools to this partnership and the success that it has brought.
The College however is not complacent; we will continue to strive to improve the service we offer. It is for this reason and the continued dissatisfaction with County based post-16 provision for many parents, that we are consulting on expanding our provision to include a sixth form providing A level courses. Of those students who left us last year, 80% left the County or moved to a public school in order to continue their post-16 studies; we consider this inadequate. We will only proceed however, if there is significant parental support, if we are able to ensure an excellent provision and that the provision will be viable in the long term. I have included with this letter a copy of the post-16 results for those providers our students currently attend to give you an indication of the quality of the provision already on offer which may help inform your response to the consultation.
I will shortly email all parents (for whom we have an email address) with a link to the survey and will also place a link on our website (www.catmosecollege.com). If you would like a hard copy of the survey to complete please contact the College or ask your child to collect one from Client Services.
Finally, as you are aware, the College has been inspected by Ofsted. Thank you to those of you who have contributed to the parent survey sent out by Ofsted. I look forward to reporting back the results of the inspection as soon as I am able to do so. If you would like to discuss any aspect of the work of the College please do not hesitate to contact me.