Complaint triggers unit inspection

Three Towers has sites in Hindley and Whelley

Three Towers has sites in Hindley and Whelley

An education inspector made an unannounced visit to a Wigan pupil referral unit after a complaint about youngsters’ behaviour.

Ofsted was contacted about Three Towers Alternative Provision Academy, which has sites in Hindley and Whelley.

But inspector Pippa Jackson Maitland’s report after last month’s visit to observe the youngsters’ behaviour, talk to staff and look at documentary evidence has concluded that much is going well there.

Her report reads: “I am of the opinion that at this time leaders and managers have taken effective action to improve behaviour and secure consistently positive attitudes to learning.”

Details of the complaint were not contained in the report, but it is said to have concerned the behaviour of pupils at the Hindley campus, which has children in key stages three and four.

Headteacher Anne Isherwood and senior leaders were found to have “responded promptly” and a “thorough investigation” was carried out. They also commissioned an external review of systems and processes by Wigan Educational Psychology Service.

It highlighted the strong relationships between staff and learners

Headteacher Anne Isherwood

Three Towers became an academy in 2015. Its pupils include children who have been permanently excluded from school, are at risk of permanent exclusion, have medical needs or are without a school place.

Mrs Jackson Maitland found behaviour was “generally good”. But her report said at least once a week there would be a day where pupils’ behaviour was “more challenging” and that was “most often triggered by the arrival of a new pupil. She said the recent appointment of a member of staff responsible for new pupil integration had already had a “positive impact” and the integration process had been “refined and improved”.

Miss Isherwood said: “We were really pleased. We thought it was a very positive report and for us the main thing was that it highlighted the strong relationships between the staff and the learners and the learners themselves. The areas for improvement we had already identified through our own self-evaluation process and taken steps to address these and it is now a case of embedding and tweaking and monitoring the changes that have been made.”

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