School praised by Ofsted for sterling work after headteacher’s sudden death

PUBLISHED: 07:00 21 February 2018 | UPDATED: 07:36 21 February 2018

St Andrew's Primary School, in Congresbury has received a good Ofsted report. Headteacher Fran Martin with pupils celebrating.

St Andrew's Primary School, in Congresbury has received a good Ofsted report. Headteacher Fran Martin with pupils celebrating.

Archant

A primary school has been lauded with praise by an education watchdog in the wake of the ‘very sudden’ death of its ‘much-loved’ headteacher.

Neil Tuttiett, top left, with St Andrew's Primary School PTA.Neil Tuttiett, top left, with St Andrew's Primary School PTA.

St Andrew’s Primary School in Congresbury has earned a good rating from Ofsted, just five months on from the death of the inspirational Neil Tuttiett, with inspectors finding his ‘proud’ legacy lives on.

Mr Tuttiett died in September after being diagnosed with two brain tumours in the summer holidays, and his death was met with a wave of tributes from pupils, parents and colleagues.

He oversaw the creation of the school in 2009 after the merger between Glebe Infant School and St Andrew’s Junior School, earning praise for his leadership.

Fran Martin took the reigns as acting headteacher in September, and Ofsted says she has ‘sensitively maintained’ the blueprint left by Mr Tuttiett.

Mrs Martin told the Times she is ‘delighted’ with Ofsted’s report.

She said: “It is a fitting tribute to the children, governors and staff – past and present – for their hard work and commitment to making St Andrew’s a good school.”

Inspector Lorna Brackstone, who visited the school in January, found St Andrew’s leaders are guiding pupils well and students are making good progress.

She said: “St Andrew’s continues to be a good school where everyone is valued, cared for and encouraged to succeed both academically and socially.

“Its fully inclusive ethos is a fitting tribute to the leadership of the late headteacher who worked closely with all members of the school community to ensure that every child in his care received the best possible education.

“His legacy, of which there is so much to be proud, has been very sensitively maintained by Mrs Martin, who, parents feel, has a ‘good balance of leadership, discipline and charisma’.

“Leaders have remained strong and focused during this sad time and continue to put the children at the heart of all they do.”

Ms Brackstone said feedback from parents praised the school’s handling of the ‘highly-respected’ headteacher’s death, adding ‘children have been given support to cope with their own feelings and process what has happened’.

She also viewed St Andrew’s ‘is a beacon of excellence for its work with families from the traveller community’.

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