Published: 14:36, 23 April 2020
| Updated: 14:38, 23 April 2020
A secondary foundation school has improved enough to earn a 'good' assessment in its latest Ofsted inspection.
It was announced this week that Aylesford School, on Teapot Lane in Aylesford, was given the improved rating following a visit from the government inspectors in March.
The establishment was awarded a 'good' mark in all five assessment categories on which it was judged: quality of education, behaviour and attitudes, personal development, leadership and management, and sixth-form provision.
When Ofsted last reviewed the school's performance in November 2017, it was graded as 'requires improvement'.
One area in which the 2017 report demanded improvement was pupils’ personal development and behaviour, with inspectors calling for the school's "character strengths" to be more deeply ingrained.
Success in this area is acknowledged in the latest findings, which quotes the parent of one child as saying: "The character education means he can demonstrate real success as a rounded individual, not just academically."
Headteacher Tanya Kelvie, who took over at the helm in January 2017, has welcomed the latest report and she was quick to praise the efforts of the entire school community in achieving the improvement.
She said: "We are over the moon and elated by this news. Obviously we have had to close the school, so it's a shame not to be able to celebrate this together.
"We want to take the school forward to become an outstanding school. We are delighted to get the recognition of the work we have done on character, because character and academic achievement go hand-in-hand.
"For the first time in the school's history we are oversubscribed, and that was before this report was released. Our students played a massive part is getting here, it's a tribute to how far the school has come and where we are going."
Outlining the findings of the inspectors, the report states: "Since the last inspection, leaders have successfully improved all aspects of the school. They know the school well and have tackled weaknesses effectively.
"Leaders have a strong focus on building character education. This has transformed pupils’ behaviour and attitudes to learning. Pupils approach their learning positively, including those who have joined the school in-year."
The school was also praised for the strength of teachers' subject knowledge, the introduction of effective assessment methods and the development of leadership skills among the sixth-formers.
Aylesford School is a mixed comprehensive which admits students from 11 to 18 years old. At the time of the report it had 741 pupils on the school roll, and above-average number of which have special educational needs and disability.