THE excellent behaviour and singing of an Accrington primary school’s pupils struck a chord with inspectors in its recent Ofsted review.
Benjamin Hargreaves CE Primary was awarded an overall Grade 2 "good’’ rating in its inspection, but also received several Grade 1s for outstanding performance.
The Barnfield Street school was visited by inspectors in December last year – a "reduced tariff" one-day visit following the previous successful inspection in January 2006.
In her letter to pupils, inspector Angela Milner wrote: "We saw happy children who enjoy school and get along extremely well with all of the adults in school and with each other.
"We were particularly impr-essed by your behaviour, your extremely positive attitudes to learning and your wonderful singing."
The report states that the level of skills upon entry to the pre-reception stage is typically below average, but that by Key Stage 2 standards are above the national average.
Teachers and teaching assistants work hard to give all pupils a good education and provide high-quality care, while parents are "overwhelmingly positive" about all aspects of the school.
The pupils also make a strong contribution to the parish and local community through their charitable activities such as singing to raise money for the local hospice.
In total the school received an outstanding grade in just under a quarter of the 33 categories examined, with the remainder rated as good.
The report is a positive start for headteacher Julie Nicol after she took over as head back in September, following three years as deputy head.
She said: "We are absolutely thrilled with the report.
"It reflects all the hard work and commitment shown by our whole school community – staff, pupils, parents and governors."
The school was also inspected on the same day by the Blackburn diocese, and rated good across all categories.
The church inspector, the Rev W Sloan concluded: "Leadership by the headteacher is outstanding and supplemented by strong support from other managers.
"She has embedded a Christ-ian ethos into all aspects of school work with a determination that every decision must be based on what will be best for the children concerned."