Just five years ago Sutton’s Liberal Democrat council invested heavily in converting a former school building in Robin Hood Lane, Sutton, into a new school for The Limes College, the borough’s pupil referral unit.
Previously the students had occupied a group of inadequate and run-down classrooms on a nearby site.
This week, following a recent inspection, the college has been rated as outstanding in all areas by Ofsted. The teaching, leadership and management at the school all achieved the outstanding rating – the highest possible level - by inspectors.
There was praise too for the behaviour and achievement of pupils at the local authority-maintained college.
The inspection report concluded: “Students make excellent progress and many experience success for the first time in their school career.” It added: “Outstanding support is given to students and families.”
The behaviour of students was highlighted as outstanding and they were praised for having “very good attitudes to learning”. A very high proportion of students return successfully to mainstream education.
Virtually all students in Key Stage 4 leave with recognised qualifications and go on to a course, apprenticeship or a job when they leave.
The dedicated headteacher, Emma Bradshaw, was praised for her outstanding leadership which the inspectors said was driving rapid improvement.
Emma said: “We are really proud that the excellent work we do with young people has been given official recognition. We involve students and ensure they form positive relationships with each other, parents, staff and the wider community. Through these relationships we address students’ barriers to learning. This enables learning, progression and achievement.”
“It is essential that we have a relentless focus on excellence for all. We make a difference and I would like to take this opportunity to thank parents, partner agencies, students and staff for all their hard work, which makes The Limes College outstanding.”
Cllr Ruth Dombey, Lib Dem Leader of Sutton Council, said: “We are delighted with this outcome which shows how important it is to provide good facilities for all our students. Their excellent facilities, together with their dedicated teaching staff, are now giving the Limes students the very best possible chance for the future. I congratulate Emma and her team on their wonderful achievement.”
The full Ofsted report is on The Limes College’s website www.thelimescollege.org.uk