A PRIMARY school that was rated as having serious weaknesses almost a year ago has significantly improved, a new report shows.

The harsh verdict on Northleigh Primary, in St Peter's Road, North Malvern, came in an Ofsted report based on a visit in November 2017.

But the latest report, from an inspection last month, found that interim head Stuart Busby "has been tenacious in his ambition to improve the school. He has set a clear direction and raised expectations of staff and pupils".

It also says that he "is perceptive and honest about the work that still needs to be done to improve the school further".

According to the report, the school has worked well to tackle the issues identified in the previous inspection, teachers have benefitted from good quality training, pupils enjoy school, behave well and feel safe, and staff morale is high and there is a positive atmosphere in the school.

"Staff appreciate the clear direction and support that you provide. They have responded well to the changes and are resolute in their commitment to improving the education and experiences for pupils," says the report.

However, it notes that pupils are not secure in basic skills, with weaknesses in maths, spelling, punctuation and grammar.

There are also limited challenges for some pupils, especially the most able, which reduces their progress.

Mr Busby said: “It is pleasing that Ofsted has confirmed our rapid progress; staff are working very hard to ensure that children are being provided with the highest standards of education.

“We know there is still more to do as we continue to embed good practice, but we are pleased that the commitment and enthusiasm of our school community is once again recognised. We are looking forward to continuing our progress in the coming year.”