A SCHOOL which was at the bottom of Barnsley’s league tables just a few years ago has been rated ‘good’ by Ofsted in its first inspection since becoming an academy following a major turnaround.

Wakefield-based Outwood Academies Trust was brought in to help turn around the formerly struggling Carlton Community College - now Outwood Academy Carlton - and in recent years, it has been among the best performing schools in Barnsley.

It is currently rated second place in Barnsley on the ‘progress 8’ measure which takes account of how pupils have done across a range of subjects and comparing them to results when they left primary school.

Outwood Academy Carlton has now received an overall rating of ‘good’ from Ofsted, but has been told it ‘requires improvement’ in the personal development, behaviour and welfare section.

Back in December 2015 - when the school was already working with Outwood Grange Academies Trust but still officially remained Carlton Community College - it was rated as ‘good’.

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This followed years of it having languished in ‘special measures’ - Ofsted’s worst category of failing schools. The latest report reveals its status as ‘good’ has continued since officially becoming an academy in 2016.

“The curriculum is suitably broad and balanced,” the latest report says. “It provides opportunities for pupils of all abilities to be successful and to move on to aspirational next steps.

“Pupils’ personal development and welfare is good. They are well prepared for life in modern Britain through a curriculum which teaches them how to keep safe and which instils the importance of respect for others.

“Well supported by governors and the trust, leaders have systematically improved the school.

“Leaders at all levels are resolute in their belief that pupils are entitled to the highest quality of education and this is reflected in their actions. Capacity for improvement in the future is strong.”

Principal of Outwood Academy Carlton, Paul Haynes, said: “We are delighted and proud that Ofsted have confirmed our judgement that we are a good school.

“Throughout the report is a recognition that Outwood Academy Carlton is a truly inclusive academy, with strong support for SEND (special educational needs and disability) and disadvantaged students, leading to good progress for our students.

“We were proud that the inspectors noted positively the growth we have seen in the student numbers, particularly the increased number of students that join the academy mid-year.

“Many of these students have complex needs, and again we were delighted that Ofsted praised the fact that we do everything that we can to keep students in mainstream education.”

This latest report means that Outwood Grange Academies Trust has two ‘good’ secondary schools in the borough - with Outwood Academy Shafton being rated ‘good’ in January 2018.

Sabiha Laher, executive principal at Carlton and Shafton, said: “The staff at Outwood Academy Carlton are incredibly dedicated, committed and caring and this really comes across in the Ofsted report.

“I am really proud to be the executive principal across two Outwood academies in Barnsley, both of which are now ‘good’ schools.

“We believe this is fantastic news for the town and the local community, who can be confident that we will continue to work hard to keep on improving our schools to ensure our pupils have the support they need to achieve.”