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Kate Hester's story

When Kate Hester was told her Kent primary was being put in special measures just two months after she arrived, it was not a failure but the start of success.She joined Kingsmead primary in January 2002 knowing it would be a challenge but recognising there was the potential for a strong staff team.

Kingsmead serves a deprived area in Canterbury. Nearly half the pupils have special needs and a third claim free school meals.

She said: "Being in special measures was a positive experience. It is never pleasant to have that label put on your school when you know very good things are happening in it and it is improving. But we never thought about the label. It was a real team effort with everybody working together and we had a lot of staff socials."

Last year, inspectors found that teaching and learning had improved significantly at the school and praised Ms Hester's leadership as "strong and sensitive".Now it is one of 122 cited in the chief inspector's report after coming out of special measures last year.


Acres Hill primary, Sheffield

Aldwyn primary and motor-impaired resource base, Tameside

Alexandra high and sixth-form centre, Sandwell

Ashton West End primary

early-years centre and visually-impaired resource base, Tameside

Barstable, Essex

Beaudesert lower, Bedfordshire

Beauherne community, Kent

Bedewell primary, South Tyneside

Broadwater first and middle, West Sussex

Brookfield, Herefordshire

Brownhills high, City of Stoke-on-Trent

Bushy Hill junior, Surrey

Cherry Hinton community junior, Cambridgeshire

Churchfields performing arts college, Swindon

Cliffey House, Worcestershire

Clifton primary, City of Kingston upon Hull

Colton Hills community, Wolverhampton

Copperfields College, Leeds

Costessey junior, Norfolk

Crosland Moor junior, Kirklees

De Bohun primary, Enfield

Doucecroft, Essex

Downderry primary, Lewisham

Drapers Mills primary, Kent

Ecclesbourne primary, Islington

Elfrida primary, Lewisham

Fartown high, Kirklees

Fulbridge junior, Peterborough

Gorsthills community primary, Cheshire

Great Wishford first, Wiltshire

Hartshead Moor, Kirklees

Hartsholme primary, Lincolnshire

Hawkswood school and centre, Waltham Forest

Heath Mount primary, Birmingham

Heber primary, Southwark

Henbury, Bristol

Heronsgate primary, Greenwich

Highbury Quadrant primary, Islington

Highfields community primary, Northamptonshire

Highwood primary, Wokingham

Holy Cross primary, Essex

Hreod Parkway, Swindon

Jessop primary, Lambeth

Kingsland, Hackney

Kingsmead primary, Kent

Kinsley junior infants and nursery, Wakefield

Knottingley Ferrybridge infants, Wakefield

Laburnum primary, Hackney

Langbourne primary, Southwark

Langmoor primary, Leicestershire

Larchfield primary and nursery, Windsor and Maidenhead

Lea Manor high, Luton

Lemington middle, Newcastle upon Tyne

Mandeville upper, Buckinghamshire

Martindale primary and nursery, Hertfordshire

Matching Green primary, Essex

Mayfield, City of Portsmouth

Mayflower primary, Essex

Montgomery, Kent

Moor Green junior, Birmingham

Moseley Park, Wolverhampton

Mossley primary, Walsall

Mount primary and nursery, Nottinghamshire

Nash Mills primary, Hertfordshire

Netherton primary, Dudley

New Mills primary, Derbyshire

Pin Green primary and nursery, Hertfordshire

Poolbrook primary, Worcestershire

Preston tutorial centre, Lancashire

Quarrendon upper, Buckinghamshire

Rathfern primary, Lewisham

Ravenstonedale endowed, Cumbria

Ravens Bank first, Worcestershire

Redlands community primary, Leicestershire

Richmond first, Kent

Royal Alexandra and Albert, Surrey

Salisbury, Enfield

Saviour primary, Manchester

Senacre technology college, Kent

Silkmore community primary, Staffordshire

Silverbank Centre, Medway

Sinfin community, Derby

South Street primary, Bristol

Sparhawk first and nursery, Sprowston, Norfolk

St Andrew's community junior, Cambridgeshire

St Andrew's nursery and infants, Essex

St Anne's Catholic primary, Hampshire

St Anselm primary, Ealing

St Edmund, Tower Hamlets

St Francis, Westborough community primary, Surrey

St Helen's infants, Waltham Forest

St Helen's primary, Medway

St John the Evangelist primary, Staffordshire

St John's primary, Kent

St Mary's primary, Lancashire

St Mary's primary, Warwickshire

St Peter and St John primary, Salford

St Philip Howard primary, Kent

St Philip's primary, Bath and North East Somerset

St Stephen's CofE primary, Wolverhampton

St Thomas community primary, Manchester

Starbeck community primary, North Yorkshire

Stepney Green, Tower Hamlets

Syon Park, Hounslow

Temple Normanton primary, Derbyshire

Thamesview, Kent

The Beeches primary, City of Peterborough

The Blessed John Roche, Tower Hamlets

Furness primary, Brent

Lakes, Cumbria

Ockendon, Thurrock

Skegness junior, Lincolnshire

Thomas Whitehead, Bedfordshire

Tidemill primary, Lewisham

Troon community primary, Cornwall

Victoria Avenue community, Manchester

Wey House, Surrey

Windmill Hills community primary, Gateshead

Wingrove primary, Newcastle upon Tyne

Winkleigh primary, Devon

Woodhouse Close junior, Durham

Wychbold first and nursery, Worcestershire

Colleges and sixth-forms that were inadequate and are now making adequate


Cecil Jones high, Southend on Sea

Eastwood comprehensive, Nottinghamshire

Redbridge college, Redbridge

Stockport college of FE and HE, Stockport

Torc high, Staffordshire

A list of the 415 particularly successful schools, is available on the TES website,

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