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Former pupils bid farewell to old school

Former pupils of a Hampshire secondary have been back to their old school, saying goodbye before it closes its doors for the last time. Christine Alsford caught up with the former Bitterne Park pupils as they walked the familiar corridors for the first time in decades.

Interviewees: Nancy Kinnersley, former pupil, Bitterne Park School

Christopher Whitbread, Deputy Headteacher

Janice Cherry & Carole Armstrong, former pupils, Bitterne Park School


Digging their way to an outdoors education

Education. Relaxation. Cultivation. That's the new unofficial motto of one school in Hampshire which has created a new classroom-garden for its students. Brookfield Community School at Sarisbury Green was able to complete its 'Dig-it' project after winning ten thousand pounds worth of funding from a large supermarket chain. It believes all students will benefit from being able to learn outdoors

Story of fire at Hastings Pier - 100 years ago today - retold

One hundred years ago Hastings Pier was ravaged by fire, almost a century before the 2010 blaze which devastated the Victorian structure.

Today the story of the 1917 fire is being retold - while the new pier goes from strength to strength.

Andy Dickenson reports and speaks to historian Dr Chris Kempshall and Jo Stewart from the Hastings Pier Charity.

20,000 homes without water after burst main

Credit: PA

Around 20,000 homes in Hampshire are currently without water following a burst main.

Homes in Chandler's Ford, Otterbourne and Chilworth have been affected.

John Keble Primary School Credit: ITV Meridian

The John Keble Primary School, in Hursley and Ampfield Primary near Romsey were also forced to close because there was no water supply.

Southern Water engineers have been working to fix the pipe, which is on farmland at Silkstead Lane in Hursley.

Rob Sanders, Headteacher, John Keble Primary School


Steve Coogan joining protest over education cuts

Actor and comedian Steve Coogan will be joining parents, children and teachers from Sussex and the Isle of Wight - to protest against education funding cuts today.

Tens of thousands of messages will be delivered to Downing Street pleading with the government to "Save our Schools". They say slashes to budgets have had devastating effects.

Steve Coogan protesting over education cuts Credit: PA

Ofsted report deems school 'inadequate'

Sandown Bay Academy on the Isle of Wight will now be put back into special measures after a highly critical Ofsted report. It rated the school's leadership and management as "inadequate" and said the quality of teaching required improvement.

It's the first time the school has been inspected since December 2015 and comes as those in charge of the school plan to merge it with another secondary in Ryde seven miles away.

Inspectors said pupils have been 'let down' for too long and have not made enough progress. They criticised inconsistent teaching and poor management as well as saying that too many pupils are persistently absent.

The academy chain which runs the school - AET - the Academies Enterprise Trust - said they were very aware of the issues.

However, the report does highlight some positive aspects of the school including specialist provision for pupils with autism, the behaviour of pupils around the school and the strong sense of community support.

We are very aware of the issues in the Academy as well as its strengths, and fully take on board this report."

"We acknowledge, as we have already acknowledged elsewhere, that AET has not succeeded in driving forward the educational improvements at Sandown Bay that we would all wish to see, and we fully understand the problems and challenges standing in the way of pupils’ progress."

"Many of these challenges stem from the underlying context within which Sandown Bay is working, where it has a falling student roll due to over-supply of secondary school places on the Isle of Wight, and as a result income has been falling steeply year-on-year."

"The resulting annual cycle of redundancies has put enormous pressures on staff and made it very difficult for the school to provide the resources and the teaching it needs."

– Academies Enterprise Trust

Island school set to go back into special measures

A troubled secondary school on the Isle of Wight which is facing an uncertain future received another blow today with the publication of a damning Ofsted report.

Sandown Bay Academy is now set to go back into special measures after inspectors criticised the running of the school and levels of achievement.

The report said that:

  • Pupils have been let down in the quality of education they receive for too long.
  • Inconsistencies in teaching mean the pace of learning overall is too slow.
  • Too many pupils are persistently absent

And it highlighted turbulent leadership and a loss of confidence in the academy chain running the school.

The Academies Enterprise Trust (AET) who are in charge said it's aware of the school's issues - as well as its strengths - and will address any weaknesses identified in the report.

Our Social Affairs Correspondent, Christine Alsford reports.

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