Best Practice

Case study: Approaches to school improvement

School improvement
Raising achievement when the odds seem stacked against you can be a daunting task. Mike Adnitt, vice-principal at St Lawrence Academy, reflects on their strategies over the last five years, including introducing ‘achievement team leaders’ and ‘student progress leaders’

As a school, we face many challenges. Based in Scunthorpe, in one of the UK’s most deprived areas, around 40 per cent of our students speak English as an additional language (EAL) and some come from low income families or homes with second or third generation unemployment.

When students join us, some of them sit well below the expectation of where they should be academically and, until recently, only 14 per cent of students gained at least five GCSEs including English and maths at grades A* to C. 

Despite these challenges, we have managed to drive up standards through the good use of data, which helps support our leadership team by providing the full picture of where pupils sit in terms of performance. The result is that most issues are being overcome and we are now one of the highest achieving schools in terms of value-added.

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