Milestones on the road to recovery

September 1993: new head Geoff Hampton arrives.

November 1993: OFSTED inspection.

January 1994: OFSTED report highlights substandard buildings, poor management, low standards and discipline problems. School goes on to special measures list.

March 1994: action plan sets up working parties of staff and governors to tackle the curriculum, buildings, discipline and staffing.

First OFSTED monitoring visit highlights progress on all key issues.

September 1994: pupil numbers reach all-time low of 520 as parents withdraw pupils.

December 1994: local authority invests Pounds 100,000 in school buildings - a further Pounds 250,000 comes later - as school's reputation improves.

April 1995: intake starts to increase as pupils are transferred back to Northicote.

September 1995: annual intake up from average 100 to 120.

October 1995: OFSTED reinspection.

November 1995: Education and Employment Secretary Gillian Shephard announces that special measures are to be lifted.

June 1996: Basic Skills Agency awards Northicote quality mark for raising standards of literacy and numeracy.

June 1996: Pounds 400,000 advanced learning centre opens, offering specialist facilities to students and local adults for A-levels and other post-16 study.

September 1996: intake of 136 means increasing forms of entry from four to five.

October 1996: Pounds 120,000 fibre optics computer network installed, said to be the most advanced in the country.

November 1996: Pounds 4.1 million National Lottery bid submitted to improve sports facilities.

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