The man who is holding the local authority in Northumberland to account is Nick Hudson, the regional director for Ofsted.
The schools inspector, Ofsted, says children in Northumberland have less chance of going to a good school than in previous years.
It says the situation is unacceptable, and will be of great concern to parents, carers and pupils.
Focussed inspections of 17 schools in the county have resulted in four being put into special measures, including one which had previously been rated as 'Good'.
Ofsted says the downward slide is against the national trend, and must be halted.
Derek Proud reports.
Nick Hudson, Regional director, Ofsted
“This focused inspection of 17 Northumberland schools by Ofsted has raised a number of issues that as an authority we are taking very seriously and working hard to resolve. We are looking at the reports and Ofsted’s recommendations to the council so that we can develop an improvement plan for education in the county.
“We will be working closely with the schools and increasing the levels of support so that together we can quickly improve the situation for the children and young people where it has been found to be inadequate.
“Although Ofsted found an improvement in some of the schools inspected and highlighted a range of strengths in Northumberland, we are now focused on making the tangible improvements required. We’re determined to get this right so that there is a good school for every Northumberland learner.
“A meeting between the local authority, Ofsted and all head teachers in Northumberland is already planned where we expect to agree a way forward.
– Cllr Robert Arckless, policy board member for children’s services
“Since forming the new administration in the summer the policy board has picked up on some of these concerns and we are taking swift action in the strategic leadership of education and developing a plan of action so improvements can be made.”
Children in Northumberland have less chance of going to a good school than in other parts in England, according to the schools watchdog, Ofsted.
It carried out emergency inspections in 17 schools and found three quarters had failed to improve or deteriorated.
Four have been put into special measures. The County Council says it is determined to make improvements. Ofsted said the situation is unacceptable.
Ofsted has completed inspections of 17 schools in Northumberland. The education watchdog wrote to Northumberland County Council today, to tell them that:
- One school was graded outstanding
- Three were found to be good
- Nine were judged to require improvement
- Four were placed in special measures
The North East is to have its own Regional Director to drive up standards and quality of education in the region, according to a report from Ofsted.
Another Ofsted report, also released today, found that there were huge variations in the quality of education and learning across local authority areas.
Middlesbrough was found to be the third worst performing local authority area in the entire country.
Ofsted confirmed that Nick Hudson will take up the post of North East and Yorkshire and Humber Regional Director for Education, Learning and Skills from January of next year.
Regional Directors will be tasked with the challenge of supporting and boosting under-performing schools and colleges in their area.