A HEAD teacher says she is determined to ensure pupils receive the best possible education after a watchdog said improvements were required at her school.

Ofsted criticised Lakeside Primary at Clifton Moor in a report published after an inspection on May 21 and 22.

It claimed governors ‘took their eyes off the ball’ after its last inspection and therefore failed to notice a 'failing performance'.

It said standards reached by pupils were lower than they should be from their starting points, and attainment in maths was lower than in writing and reading because the quality of teaching was inconsistent as pupils moved through the school.

The report also said teachers did not give pupils clear enough examples of what they were expected to do.

However, it said that with good support from the local authority, head teacher Debbie Cousins had ensured the decline in performance had been halted and the school was now on an 'upward trajectory,' pupils were well behaved and felt secure and safe, and morale was high.

Mrs Cousins, who has been in post only a year, said she and her team were disappointed by the the report's outcome and were more determined than ever to ensure pupils received the best possible education in the highest quality learning environment.

“We are delighted that the report does highlight the happiness of our pupils and the improvements we have implemented over the past year resulting in good pupil progress," she said.

“I am dedicated and passionate about our school and about our children achieving the best that they can achieve and I will not stop driving for this goal at Lakeside Primary.”

Governor's chair Calum Jack said they felt they had made a 'great decision' in employing Mrs Cousins, and children were engaged and happy, teachers were motivated and the school was starting to see the positive benefits of the initiatives the team was introducing.

Maxine Squire, assistant director education and skills at City of York Council, said Ofsted's present framework was the most rigorous one yet, and while it had judged Lakeside to be requiring improvement, it had highlighted the head teacher's contribution to leading improvement in her first year.

"We are working hard with this committed and far-sighted head, the whole school and governors to secure an Ofsted judgement of ‘good’ as quickly as possible," she added.