A WORCESTER school has said it frustrated it could be waiting years to share the "impressive changes" made since a poor Ofsted report.

Cherry Orchard Primary School, on Timberdine Close, has worked hard to "revise and refresh" their quality of education, after an inadequate Ofsted rating last year.

But the school has said the pandemic has "inhibited" their ability to share the improvements made with the regulatory body.

The school, which has since joined an academy, is now legally considered a new school but with many of the same teachers and facilities.

A spokesman for Ofsted said: "Maintained schools that become academies are normally treated as new schools for inspection purposes and are subject to a section 5 inspection as their first inspection. This will normally take place within 3 years of the new school opening". 

The spokesman also said previous inspection ratings would not necessarily be taken into consideration when inspecting it as a new school.

 Karen Banford, headteacher at the school said: "It has been frustrating that our Cherry Orchard parents and stakeholders have not been able to visit the school to see for themselves the changes taking place.

"We hope this will change in September so that we can invite visitors and local stakeholders to come and see for themselves the impressive school that Cherry Orchard is.

"We have a wealth of talent in the school, our strong reputation and stability over many decades is still there and we are keen to share this with a new generation of parents and pupils".

Since Ofsted's visit to the school in January 2020, when they were told the student's academic progress was "not good enough", Cherry Orchard said it has made a vast range of changes.

Now a part of the Rivers Academy Trust, the school says they have invested a "huge amount" in new IT equipment and a whole new curriculum is being written to ensure the students are "knowledge-rich".

Mrs Banford said: "This year has been undoubtedly hard on everyone, especially our children but they are resilient and flexible.

"I am encouraging our community to talk positively about the opportunities we have had, rather than focussing on the gaps or damage to learning that some people dwell on.

"I have noticed how hard it has been for families to look around schools during the pandemic so this has affected the normal way admissions would operate.

"We have been creative, finding new ways to accommodate families, including outside tours, socially distanced meetings, online tours and after-hours visits for families".

Serving as headteacher of the school since last summer, Mrs Banford said she is "incredibly proud" to see children and staff navigating through the pandemic, whilst making the changes needed to address Oftsed concerns.

She said: "We have worked incredibly hard as a team; our sequences of learning have been refreshed to ensure our pupils are engaged and intrigued on a daily basis.

"Our new phonics and early reading strategies have already made an impact on our pupils – seeing our pupils making rapid progress is definitely the best part of headship.

"I am passionate about education and the difference it can make. I love being part of the Cherry Orchard team, we are committed to developing the best education we can for the whole school community.

"Cherry Orchard is an incredible place and we are looking forward to the next Ofsted visit, due in two or three years’ time."