Staff and students at Queen Elizabeth’s Academy are celebrating a significant milestone in the school’s history today as it has been officially rated ‘good’ by Ofsted. The Mansfield-based academy – part of the Diverse Academies Trust – was inspected on 18 and 19 April 2023, with inspector’s praising leaders’ hard work to rapidly improve the school.

Since joining Diverse Academies, the academy has been on a transformative journey with staff working relentlessly to improve standards, behaviours and outcomes.

Inspectors found leaders to be ‘ambitious for what all pupils can achieve’ – this included support for children with special needs and disabilities (SEND), who share the same opportunities as all other students. Further highlights of the published Ofsted report cite ‘a culture that supports all students to learn well’ and who ‘take pride in their achievements’.

Inspectors also noted that ‘leaders have very high expectations of pupils’ behaviour’ and commented on the calm classrooms and corridors, polite students, welcoming and inclusive atmosphere, and that ‘most pupils show positive attitudes to all aspects of school life’. The academy’s Christian values were well understood by students, and they recognised how such values could help them to be successful, leading them to be ‘well prepared for their lives in modern Britain’.

In terms of teaching and learning, the report outlined that the academy had planned ‘an ambitious curriculum’ with students having a wide variety of courses to choose from. Inspectors concluded: ‘Teachers have strong subject knowledge. They provide pupils with clear explanations. Teachers help pupils recall what they have learned and deepen their understanding. They routinely check what pupils can remember. When pupils need extra support, teachers adapt lessons to help them.’

This is the second time this year that the academy has had cause for celebration. In February, the academy was also graded ‘good’ following a Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools (SIAMS) – an inspection which focuses on the impact of a Church school’s Christian vision on the school community. As a Christian school falling under the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham, Queen Elizabeth’s was praised for improving learning and standards and building the character of young people in its care by embedding Christian values into everyday life at the academy.

Commenting on the successful Ofsted outcome, Principal, Donna Percival, said: “We are so proud of all that we’ve achieved together as a school community. It is a real blessing to be part of the Queen Elizabeth’s improvement journey. For the academy staff and students to be recognised in this way by both Ofsted and SIAMS is wonderful news.”

Executive Principal, Caroline Saxelby, added: “The outcome of the Ofsted report is very well-deserved and testament to the commitment and care that all staff provide to the pupils at Queen Elizabeth’s Academy every day. The provision both within and beyond the classroom is of the highest quality and expectations are also consistently high. Under the strong and determined leadership of Donna Percival the academy has gone from strength to strength and I am confident it will continue its journey forward.”

Chief Executive Officer of Diverse Academies Trust, Dave Cotton, said: “I am immensely proud of the whole community at Queen Elizabeth’s Academy. This Ofsted judgement is confirmation of what we already knew about the rapid transformation of this school – and our colleagues, students, parents, carers and governors have much to celebrate.

“QEA is an inclusive, welcoming and aspirational place of learning, where students are polite and well behaved, keen to learn and are ambitious for their future. With a strong leadership team and knowledgeable, expert teaching staff, all our young people at QEA are able to thrive.

“I would like to give my thanks and gratitude for the hard work and determination of the whole team and look forward to seeing this academy continue to be an excellent place of learning in the heart of Mansfield’s community.”

Read the full Ofsted report here