Bluebell Meadow Primary in Trimdon put in special measures

Bluebell Meadow Primary School Image copyright Google
Image caption Ofsted noted there was a lot of respect between pupils and teachers

A County Durham school has been placed in special measures after education inspectors rated it inadequate.

The report found Bluebell Meadow Primary School, in Trimdon, had "weak" teaching and pupils were "below the standards expected".

The school was created by a merger of three separate schools in 2016.

Headteacher Lou Dollings said she was "disappointed" but improvements had been made and more would follow.

Ofsted inspectors said the school had "failed to address weaknesses in the quality of teaching, learning and assessment" with staffing issues having a "negative effect on pupils' learning".

They found subject leadership was "poorly developed" and youngsters were making "insufficient progress in reading, writing and mathematics".

The school, described by inspectors as a "larger than average primary", has about 330 pupils aged between two and 11.

It was formed when Trimdon Village Infant and Nursery School, Trimdon Junior School and Trimdon Grange Infant and Nursery School merged.

'Mutual respect'

At the time, councillors said the move would prove beneficial and lead to greater financial stability.

However, the watchdog said: "There have been significant changes and turbulence in staffing due to both this process and prolonged staff absence.

"A substantial financial burden has further obstructed development."

Ms Dollings said: "All members of our school community are very disappointed with the outcome of the Ofsted inspection.

"We are pleased Ofsted noted the improvements that have been made, including in attendance and that inspectors highlighted the mutual respect and warm relationships between staff and children.

"We do however recognise there is room for further improvement."

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