ROSE Hill Primary School has been placed into special measures after a scathing Ofsted report found it was inadequate in almost all areas.

Inspectors said governors and staff had not been trained properly on how to prevent radicalism and extremism and said pupils were “not prepared well enough for life in modern Britain.”

In one instance during the inspection in November a visitor was allowed into the 384-pupil school unchallenged by reception staff and the inspectors said children “regularly disappeared” from sight during playtime.

Headteacher Sue Vermes said she was determined to turn the school around and said she and her staff were disappointed with the report, which came after the school was rated ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted – one category above inadequate – in June.

She said: “We are not saying we did not make mistakes, but the provision is not as radically different as the report implies.

“In fact most people who come to the school notice, for instance, that there is no poor behaviour.

“After an experience like that everybody feels very demoralised and unhappy and it feels like we are not moving in the right direction.

“We picked ourselves up and looked at the things we needed to do more of.

“We feel our pupils are pretty well-prepared for life in modern Britain.

“British values are part of our values policy but they needed more evidence that we were teaching them.”

Ofsted inspectors Elizabeth Farr, Helena Read, Hilary Goddard and Debra Anderson visited the school on November 17 and 18.

They raised a number of health and safety issues, including a chemical store cupboard being left open and were concerned at the lack of pride pupils took in their work, with some seen scrunching up their work and throwing it on the floor.

The report also said standards had declined “significantly” since the previous inspection in June and pupils were making slow progress in reading, writing and maths.

Ms Vermes said this had been partly affected by a “poor” set of Year Six SATS results following the June inspection.

The school was previously in special measures from February 2007 until July 2008.

Headteacher Sue Mortimer turned the school around and following a July 2010 inspection it was rated good – Ofsted’s second-highest ranking – and named the most improved primary in England.

After Mrs Mortimer retired the school spent a year with an interim head before Ms Vermes took over at the start of the 2014/15 academic year. Board of governors chairman Robin Gill said he was confident that Ms Vermes was the best person for the job.

He said: “She is a very resilient person and she has had a very difficult time since coming here.”

Mr Gill said the safeguarding issue when a visitor had entered unchallenged related to a person who was known to reception staff, being let in without wearing an identity badge.

The “regular” disappearance of pupils out of sight at playtimes was said by Ms Vermes to be down to one occasion when the inspector saw a boy go around a corner in the playground.

The school complained to Ofsted about the conduct of the inspection team but Ms Vermes said the school standards body rejected the concerns raised.

Oxford East MP Andrew Smith also wrote to Ofsted to raise his concerns that the inspection was carried out in a “cold and negative way.”

He said: “I have every confidence in Sue Vermes and her team.

“I know they are working hard and are very committed to getting the best possible progress for the children at Rose Hill Primary School.”

Ofsted inspectors will visit the school again within three to six months to monitor its progress.


* Safeguarding is not effective. Health and safety checks are not rigorous or timely. Essential requirements are not met.

* Standards have declined significantly since 2014. Pupils who have fallen behind in reading, writing and mathematics are not catching up quickly enough.

* Leaders’ evaluations of the school’s effectiveness are inaccurate and too generous.

* Pupils are uninspired by teaching and consequently lack motivation to give all of their best in learning activities.

* Teaching of reading is ineffective. Many pupils struggle to read and make unacceptably slow progress.

* Leaders have failed to ensure pupils receive a full curriculum entitlement. Resources are poor.

* The majority of children leave early years without having developed the skills, knowledge and understanding for Key Stage One.

* Attendance is low. Some pupils have high rates of absence. A significant proportion of pupils who attend regularly arrive late.