THE headteacher of a Headington school has said parents should not “waste their money” on private education after it received a glowing Ofsted report.

Jolie Kirby, headteacher at Cheney School, said it offered activities such as debating, rowing, lacrosse and classics – staples of a private school – but without the bill.

And having achieved a good Ofsted rating she believes the school can compete with feepaying competitors.

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She said: “We have 50 different activities in our enrichment programme that people can take part in.

“We have subjects like classics.

We’re also a centre for watersports with rowing and kayaking opportunities for the students.”

“We also have a debating society that participates in the Cambridge Union debates.”

The school is also home to the East Oxford Community Classics Centre, which opened in 2013.

The headteacher of the 1,400-pupil school added: “I think that a lot of the activities that we can provide students are not traditionally found in a state school setting.

“If I was a parent I wouldn’t waste my money on private schools. We hope that we will be able to compete with private schools in Oxford.”

Mrs Kirby was excited to report that eight out of nine sixth form students who applied to Oxbridge this year were given offers.

She added: “This is very impressive, even by private school standards.”

Head girl and Iffley resident Billie Meadowcroft has received a conditional offer to study physical natural sciences at Queen’s College, Cambridge.

The 17-year-old student said: “The teachers at Cheney have been incredibly supportive throughout the process of applying to Oxbridge.

“I think that a lot of the extra-curricular activities that are on offer at the school helped with my application, because at Oxbridge they are looking for rounded knowledge, not just knowledge about one subject.

“One really good thing organised by the school was a trip to Villiers Park [educational trust], where we went on a residential retreat. That was one of the best experiences of my life.”

The Oftsted rating came after an inspection at the end of January – the school’s first since becoming an academy.

Mrs Kirby said: “We had our last inspection five years ago and we were placed as a good school. This Ofsted report shows that we have improved in a number of areas.

“Hopefully when the inspectors return in three years we will be an outstanding school.”

In 2013 Cheney School became the fourth school in Oxford to get academy status, meaning that the staff and governors have control of where money is spent.