The Catholic Church across Yorkshire's historic West Riding since 1878

The Catholic Church across Yorkshire's historic West Riding since 1878

St John Fisher School does Dewsbury proud!

One of our Catholic high schools has hit the BBC national news headlines today – for all the right reasons!

Head Teacher Karl Mackey, who was appointed to St John Fisher Catholic Academy in Dewsbury exactly one year ago, explained how poor student behaviour can be quickly turned around.

Karl and Assistant Head Teacher Ami Findley were interviewed for their response to a BBC survey of 9,000 teachers nationwide, 40% of whom are witnessing violence on a weekly basis, with  20% enduring verbal or online abuse from pupils or parents, and a shocking 20% actually experiencing physical assaults from their students.

With increasing levels of anxiety resulting in many of the country’s teachers leaving the profession, Karl Mackey and his staff at St John Fisher provide hope for how even small changes such as a greater staff presence in corridors and the playground between lessons and banning mobile ‘phones can make a significant difference to pupil attendance and behaviour.

Courageously acknowledging past problems in the school and community, previously highlighted in critical OFSTED reports, Karl explained to the BBC how students at the school are now turning up for their lessons on time, dressing properly and behaving courteously.

St John Fisher Catholic High School is part of the Blessed Peter Snow Catholic Academy Trust. Rachel McEvoy is the Trust’s Interim CEO and said, ‘The DfE are pleased at how well the school is doing. I’m delighted and I know others are for how well the school comes out as the shining light in a story of darkness.’

Fr Paul Grogan, Episcopal Vicar for Education, described the positive coverage as, ‘a joy to watch’ and Diocesan Director of Education Kieron Flood said, ‘It was good to see St John Fisher Dewsbury on BBC news this morning and see and hear of the impacts that have been made under Karl’s leadership. The school, students, staff and Trust must be very pleased with the positiveness of the report. A huge thank you for all you continue to do!’

Watch the full story from the BBC via iPlayer:
(the feature aired on BBC Breakfast at 08.02am, so starts at 2 hours and 2 minutes into the programme.)