Birmingham & Black Country

Trojan Horse: Small Heath School rated 'inadequate'

Small Heath School Image copyright Google Maps
Image caption Small Heath School was inspected in January

A school rated as outstanding when inspected during the "Trojan Horse" affair in Birmingham is to be put into special measures by Ofsted.

Small Heath School was now said to be "inadequate", while staff morale was "very low" and tensions were damaging its progress.

However, inspectors also spoke of a "broad and rich" curriculum and robust moves to appoint staff.

The city council said it was working to "secure leadership".

'No clear vision'

The anonymous "Trojan Horse" letter sent to the city council in 2013 claimed that a socially-conservative group of Muslims was trying to get its own members on to governing bodies and oust head teachers.

After an inspection in April last year, Ofsted had said that the quality of the school's leadership and management was "outstanding" under the previous long-serving headteacher, Peter Slough,

However, after inspections in January, it said that the current headteacher, Shanaz Khan, had "not provided a clear vision or inspiration for improvement".

The new head has been in post at Muntz Street since September following Mr Slough's retirement and "since the end of the last academic year, three other senior leaders have left", the watchdog said.

The report said: "The current tensions between the school's new senior leaders, including the headteacher, and longer-established senior and middle leaders, are damaging the school's progress and capacity to improve."

'Appropriate standards'

It said students' achievements had "declined substantially" since an inspection in May 2013.

However, Ofsted also said that council checking "confirmed that the school's systems for appointing staff were thorough, robust, and met appropriate standards".

It said that the curriculum and the extra-curricular programme were "broad and rich" and students "develop strong values of mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths, beliefs, and characteristics".

A council spokesperson said: "We are working with the school and governors to secure leadership at the school and make the rapid improvements needed, including applying to establish an interim executive board."

Small Heath School is described by Ofsted as being much larger than the average-sized secondary school with almost all students are from minority ethnic backgrounds, with most students of Pakistani or Bangladeshi heritage.

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