Statement from Jo Churchill MP following Bury St Edmunds County Upper School’s Ofsted inspection

I have always known County Upper to be a very good school and was most concerned by Ofsted’s findings during their recent inspection.


I am pleased that the school continues to be rated ‘outstanding’ for teaching, learning and assessment. The report also highlights that pupils are exceptionally well prepared for the next stage of their education, training or employment.


However, for pupils to continue to thrive they need to be safe in the educational setting and protected from external risks. It was worrying that unauthorised visitors appear able to easily access the school site and buildings. I have been assured that appropriate inspections and works have been done and that senior leaders at County Upper work closely with the police and local agencies to understand risks posed to pupils, particularly from ‘county lines’, and to secure the school site.   


I have spoken to the Headteacher, Regional Schools Commissioner and Suffolk County Council and highlighted the need for everyone to communicate and work together. As a parent of four children, I share the objective that all educational settings should provide safety, quality teaching and security. I note that the Chair of the Trust Board is asking Ofsted to re-inspect the school at the earliest opportunity and I will continue to monitor the situation closely.