A MIDDLESBROUGH school is pledging to continue improving following a challenging Ofsted report.

Ayresome Primary was found to require improvement following a visit by Ofsted inspectors at the start of October.

The Worcester Street school – which currently has 743 pupils – achieved the same overall rating in its previous inspection in September, 2015.

A much larger than average-sized primary, Ayresome accepts a high number of new pupils during the year including refugees and asylum-seekers, and more than 40 languages are spoken.

During the latest assessment, the inspection team rated the effectiveness of Ayresome’s leadership and management as ‘good’.

Ofsted also gave a ‘good’ rating to the personal development, behaviour and welfare of the school’s pupils.

A number of other areas – including quality of teaching and learning, and outcomes for pupils – were found to require improvement.

In his report, lead Inspector Darren Stewart pointed to the challenges posed by ‘turbulent’ staffing and a need for better early years provision.

However Mr Stewart also highlighted Headteacher Lisa Biggin’s determination to improve the school, which was ‘shared by leaders, governors and staff’.

He added: “As a result, morale is high and the school is improving.

“Governance has improved and is effective. By working together, leaders and governors have successfully overcome staff turbulence and tackled weak teaching.”

Areas for ongoing improvement include better planning, and building on children’s prior knowledge, especially in reading.

Ayresome Primary Headteacher Lisa Biggin said: “We constantly strive to improve, I’m pleased that Ofsted have acknowledged some very important areas of strength.

“However it has been a challenging period in the life of the school, and we still have a long way to go.

“I’m grateful to staff and governors for their tireless work and support, and above all to the pupils, their families and the wider community for their ongoing efforts to make Ayresome a school we can all be proud of.”

Councillor Jan Brunton Dobson, Middlesbrough Council’s Executive Member for Education and Skills, said: “Ayresome Primary faces huge challenges, and these are fully acknowledged in its latest Ofsted report.

“Clearly there are areas which require further work and improvement, but it is pleasing that the inspectors also found much to praise, most notably the school’s leadership.

“It is encouraging that Ayresome is moving in the right direction, and we will continue to offer the school and its pupils the support they need.”