A SCHOOL that’s ‘been through the mill’ has pulled itself together thanks to the work of its pupils and teachers.

Meadstead Primary Academy in Royston has struggled in the past few years, receiving a ‘requires improvement’ grade from Ofsted in both 2019 and 2022.

Nevertheless, staff and pupils alike have been working hard to improve the school and tackle the lacklustre reputation they’ve gained.

Earlier this year, during an Ofsted monitoring inspection, investigators noted the school’s improvements and the dedication of the leadership team to improve education standards for pupils.

The inspection said: “The curriculum, which is ambitious in nature, is now being taught with increasing consistency.

“Leaders have made sure that staff are supported to help pupils to learn and remember the most important knowledge.

“Everyone is working to provide pupils a better quality of education than they have previously experienced.

“There is more work to do, but significant progress has been made.”

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Headteacher Lee Bell, who’s only been at the school for a month, feels positive about the direction things are heading and complimented the long-standing team he’s joined for their positive work.

“This school’s been on a bit of a journey,” he added.

“We got the requires improvement grade, which from the outside doesn’t look good, but when you come through the doors it tells a different story.

“That’s thanks to the Academies Enterprise Trust - they’ve come in and worked hard with the rest of the team to put some really good foundations in place.

“The parents have also been on board, when I started I did a parent survey and they were all really positive.

“Now there’s that day to day grind to improve our Ofsted grade, but that’s not all that teaching’s about.

“I want to work with the community, building links with business outside these walls and other schools in the community.

“We also want to build more after school clubs, which have fallen behind in recent times.

“We’ve already got plans for sign language clubs, football, rugby, dance, you name it.”

The school has now been put forward for the School of the Year title at the Proud of Barnsley awards, as they work to keep improving.

Lee said: “I think the school’s been through the mill and this is just what we need.

“I always think the best way to rate a school is asking if you’d be willing to send your kids here.

“Well I’d definitely be happy to send mine.”