LETTER: Where were MP’s congrats?

On Friday 19 June West Rise Primary School in Langney won the TES school award for the Primary School of the Year. This is a significant national award. I taught at West Rise for 13 years before becoming deputy head of Roseland and I have watched with interest how the school has developed. I would like to join others in congratulating the staff and students on winning such a prestigious and well deserved award.

I have been surprised, however, that there appears not to have been any public acknowledgement of this from the MP, on either her Facebook pages, Twitter nor indeed her newsletters. As an ex-teacher and OFSTED inspector herself, she must appreciate the astonishing efforts of everyone involved in the school to have achieved such success.

By contrast, within hours of it being made public she put a lovely post on her facebook pages congratulating Gildredge House on their recent Ofsted report, calling it “a superb achievement” – as indeed it is – and I add my congratulations. I would though gently like to point out to Mrs Ansell that according to the OFSTED report the proportion of disadvantaged students, those eligible for the pupil premium (additional funding from the government), who attend Gildredge House is well ‘below’ the national average. In addition the number of disabled students and those with special educational needs is also well below the national average (OFSTED June 2015).

West Rise Primary school meanwhile, has a very high proportion of students who are on pupil premium, two fifths are eligible, a proportion well ‘above’ the national average. In addition the numbers of disabled pupils and those with special educational needs who are supported through school action is also well above the national average. In other words the school is a huge success story for Eastbourne despite the profoundly challenging environment, unlike Gildredge House.

Why doesn’t our new MP, Caroline Ansell, consider West Rise Primary also to be deserving of her public recognition?

Michaele Wynn-Jones

Vicarage Road

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