Triple C School received a second ‘Weak’ rating from inspectors, who flagged serious concerns with the school’s curriculum, safety and senior leadership.
The publication of inspectors’ findings follows the departure of Principal Mable Richardson in late May, which was announced in a letter sent to parents.
According to the Office of Education Standards report, “The overall performance of Triple C School was judged to be weak. This was because the school had not progressed a number of weak areas that were identified in the previous inspection such as, strategic planning, the curriculum and assessment. The school does not have the capacity to improve.”
Triple C was rated ‘Weak’ in its first full inspection in May 2019. A follow-through inspection in February 2020 found that the school had made ‘Satisfactory’ progress on recommendations.
Inspectors grade schools on a 4-point scale, 'Weak', 'Satisfactory', 'Good' and 'Excellent'. The minimum standard of quality is 'Satisfactory', while a 'Weak' rating signals that the school must "take urgent measures to improve" in that area.
From 3-6 May, inspectors assessed Triple C according to 4 age groups -- Early Years, Elementary, Middle and High School -- rating each one in 18 individual areas.
Out of the 72 areas, Triple C received 18 'Weak' ratings, 39 'Satisfactory' ratings and 15 'Good' ratings.
The school did improve in the majority of areas concerned with student's Attainment and Progress in English, Mathematics and Science.
However, inspectors cited issues in several critical areas, including student safety, curriculum and school leadership.
"Of serious concern was the non compliance with the Cayman Islands Child Protection Policy and regulations. The majority of staff including the Principal and Vice Principal have not had up to date training as required," inspectors said.
"The school had recently (March 21) adopted the recommended Child Protection Policy, but staff had not been briefed or trained in its implementation. The designated child protection officer has been absent from school for several weeks and not all staff were aware of his replacement. Arrangements for referrals did not follow the policy guidelines and there were no recent records of any child protection cases."
According to the report:
- "The quality of leadership has been judged to be weak. Senior leaders did not provide the drive and direction needed to secure the improvements needed."
- "The forty week curriculum plan had been created, but its implementation was slow and there was insufficient attention paid to securing learning pathways for students across the school."
- "The judgement on health and safety remained weak. Although issues identified in the previous inspection were resolved, there remained serious issues regarding child protection and access to the building. The leadership team were not proactive in securing a healthy and safe environment, despite guidance from the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS)."
Marking 70 years since its establishment in 1941, Triple C is one of the longest-standing and largest schools in the Cayman Islands. Triple C has 490 students from preschool to Grade 12.
Focussing on health and safety standards, inspectors said, "Leaders were over-reliant on external audits and inspections to ensure the school was safe. There was a serious concern about arrangements for child protection and safeguarding. The updated child protection policy was available but had not yet been implemented and staff had not been briefed on this."
"The Vice-Principal who was the identified Child Protection Officer was absent for long periods of time and his replacement was not known widely amongst staff. Referrals on safeguarding issues did not follow government regulations. The majority of staff had not had up to date training, including the Principal and Vice-Principal responsible for child protection."
Because Triple C was rated 'Weak', there will be a follow-through inspection within 6 months. The school will continue to be inspected on a regular basis until its performance is raised to at least 'Satisfactory'.