Education Scotland has written to parents at Knox Academy in Haddington to advise them of the outcome of their most recent visit, which follows their previous inspection in March 2017.

The inspection team talked to young people and worked closely with the interim headteacher and other staff to hear about the steps the school has taken to improve on areas previously identified in the original inspection.

Education Scotland noted the following key improvements:

  • The interim headteacher has provided effective leadership in taking forward work to secure improvements, including a review of the school values
  • Staff have developed a range of policies to improve practice in equalities and inclusion, including a new safeguarding policy
  • The recently created Pupil Support Faculty is now better placed to address the needs of young people, and those with social, emotional and behavioural needs in particular
  • The school has made progress in establishing a more positive learning environment for all

The report noted that there are still some improvements to be made, including: using evidence from self-evaluation activities to ensure consistency in learning and teaching across the school; reviewing the purpose of the pupil support base to ensure there is a greater focus on learning for the young people using it; and ensuring there is a whole school approach to equalities and inclusion.

Fiona Robertson, Head of Education, said:
“I am pleased that Education Scotland acknowledges that Knox Academy has made important progress since the last inspection, and I would like to thank all the staff and pupils for their hard work and commitment in making these improvements.

“It is really encouraging that the positive relationships between pupils and teachers, and the fact that almost all young people recognise the value of learning in their lives, was noted. This is a strong basis for ensuring that the school continues to be a positive learning environment for staff and pupils alike.

“We will continue to work with the school and Education Scotland to make further improvements, and to working with Susan Cook, our new Head Teacher, who joins the school in August.

“I am confident that the school will continue to make further improvements, and I look forward to celebrating that success with the school at the time of Education Scotland’s next visit.”

Education Scotland will continue to liaise with East Lothian Council regarding the school’s capacity to improve and will return to carry out another inspection within 18 months.

Published: Tuesday, 5th June 2018