New De Aston head ‘ambitious’ following Ofsted visit

De Astons  Simon Porter is a teacher first and foremost and is ambitious for an outstanding Ofsted rating EMN-170213-124344001
De Astons Simon Porter is a teacher first and foremost and is ambitious for an outstanding Ofsted rating EMN-170213-124344001

De Aston School might have started the year with a ‘good’ rating from Ofsted - but the new headteacher says ‘outstanding’ is ‘by no means out of reach’.

Simon Porter became the school’s headteacher at the beginning of this year, having joined in 1999 as the head of English and working his way up through various roles - including assistant and deputy headteacher.

Following the Ofsted inspection and the GCSE and A level performance tables, Mr Porter already has a great deal to celebrate.

He said: “We take on learners of all abilities so the focus is on progress.

“The recent performance tables put us in the top 25 per cent of schools nationally for progress, and the top seven per cent nationally for English.”

“That, for me, is a true measure of the school.”

De Aston has been rated by Ofsted as ‘consistently good’, but Mr Porter is confident that an ‘outstanding’ rating is ‘not out of reach’.

He said: “We are a comprehensive school in a selective county so it is no level playing field.

“Just because we’ve never had that offical label of outstanding doesn’t mean it’s out of reach.

“I am very ambitious for us to have that.”

Butalongside the school’s academic achievements Mr Porter has just as much enthusiasm for his students’ participation in off-timetable activities.

At De Aston, students - or ‘learners’ as Mr Porter calls them - get to develop their skills for the working world with events such as the school’s Newspaper Day, which is coming up after half term.

Mr Porter said: “There’s far more to the school than just exam results.

“We run our Newspaper Day annually through the University of Lincoln.

“Journalism lecturers and students work with our learners to produce the De Aston newspaper.

“Days like that are really important because they put all the skills you’ve got to good use.”