The Oldham Education and Skills Commission report

The publication of the OESC’s report was the result of more than 18 months of evidence gathering and discussions with a large number of schools, colleges, businesses, education professionals, young people and families.

The OESC report sets out a vision for Oldham to create a ‘Self-improving education system’ where schools, colleges and all interested parties work together in a new collaborative partnership.

It makes 19 recommendations and focuses on achieving two key targets in Oldham by 2020:

  • All performance indicators to be at the national average or above;
  • All education providers to be judged ‘good’ or better by Ofsted.

estelleEstelle Morris said: “I’m delighted to publish this report and I believe this can be a significant moment for Oldham.”

“A good education system is critical to this town’s future success. It needs high standards and a highly-skilled workforce and this report can play a major role in the future of education and training to achieve that.

“Our report identifies some good foundations are already in place, like the fantastic efforts at The Radclyffe School and many others, but we also know that is not the same story everywhere.

“Some schools aren’t yet ‘good’ and too many children don’t achieve the results they could, so this is about how we can all work together to turn that around. Our ambition is for every school to be ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’.

“We think Oldham can have a local education system that is ‘self-improving’. That is one where schools, the local authority and other partners come together to take collective responsibility for improving all schools, colleges and training across the board. It’s one where they set ambitious targets together, share information, resources and data, and offer closer support to each other.

“We also recommend the introduction of ‘The Oldham Offer’ which makes clear what each of us should expect from a good education system – and what we must each contribute towards making that happen.

“Those who work in schools and colleges have a key role but we also believe the whole community has a part to play in this. Our families, employers, community leaders, sport and cultural organisations must all do their bit.

“There’s no reason why Oldham’s children can’t be the best in the world and they should aim high. This report explains how we help them do that and I would urge everyone to read it and consider what part they can play.”

A message from Jim McMahonCllr McMahon said: “This matters whether you are a parent, carer, governor, teacher, school head, local business owner, or member of a voluntary or community group.

“A high-performing education system underpins all our ambitions for Oldham to regenerate and become a more vibrant place to live and work.

“We already have some great local practice. Holy Trinity C of E primary school at Dobcross has just been named the 12th best in the country, for example – but we need more and we also need to be smarter about supporting people into meaningful employment or further and higher education.

“This report makes it clear that we all need to focus on supporting every child to be ‘school ready’, ‘life ready’ and ‘work ready’. That means moving to a culture here where education is now ‘everyone’s business’.

“I thank Estelle and the Commission for their dedication in putting this report together. What’s vital now is that this torch is picked up by all partners to move these recommendations forward and ensure we continue this challenging – but very necessary – improvement journey.”