Governors ‘forced’ to resign from Takeley Primary School following ‘inadequate’ Ofsted report

Essex County Council

Essex County Council - Credit: Archant

All but one of the governors at an Uttlesford primary school have walked before they were pushed as the local authority appoints a new governing body following a disastrous year.

In a bid to turn the school around after a damning Ofsted report, which branded the facility inadequate, an Interim Executive Board (IEB) has been put in place at Takeley Primary School.

The former governors made the “difficult decision” to hand in their resignations after they felt Ofsted, Essex County Council (ECC) and the IEB were “unwilling to engage with them”.

Uttlesford District councillor Derek Jones, who has been a member of the governing body for more than 20 years, has not resigned but said that he felt the others had been forced out.

He told the Broadcast: “From being a governor with them I know how much they cared. If there was any indication that the governing body needed to do something to get its act in order they would have done something about it. It is really sad that people who were elected from within the community to do a job are now not able to do it.”

He added: “I am not planning on resigning because I think there is an awful lot of good going on at Takeley Primary School.”

Claire Waring, previous chairman of governing body, said they have challenged aspects of the “disappointing” Ofsted report, which heavily criticised the body, but their questions have been left unanswered.

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The two main concerns were over the findings of the achievement of pupils and the involvement of the local authority.

ECC applied to the Secretary of State to get the IEB introduced at the school and it has appointed four additional governors to work with the remaining school governors to form the governing body of the school.

The IEB met for the first time on Monday (November 3) and it will work closely with the executive headteacher John Clements.

Mr Clements said: “We would like to thank the governors for their past support and commitment given freely to the school. While some had been appointed within the last year others had shown loyal service to the school over many years. As has been seen recently, being a governor is no easy task and has immense responsibilities attached.”

Last month an inspector on behalf of Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills, visited the school and noted that “rapid improvement” was taking place.