INSPECTORS have praised the strong leadership of the headteacher at a Haddington primary school.

St Mary’s RC Primary School and nursery class was visited by a team from Education Scotland in May.

Their findings have now been made public and they have highlighted a number of key strengths within the school, including the development of a highly inclusive and nurturing ethos; effective teamwork across staff; and an impressive climate of mutual respect.

Councillor Shamin Akhtar, the local authority’s spokeswoman for education and children’s services and also a Haddington and Lammermuir ward member, was pleased with the findings and congratulated headteacher Claire Graham and her staff.

She said: “This is an excellent report which recognises the strong leadership in place at St Mary’s and the work of staff in improving a range of outcomes for children.

“I’d like to congratulate the staff and pupils for all their hard work, which is reflected in Education Scotland’s findings.

“It shows that there are strong, positive relationships in the school and recognises the involvement of children in identifying their strengths and next steps in learning.”

All of the four quality indicators – leadership of change; learning, teaching and assessment; raising attainment and achievement; and ensuring wellbeing, equality and inclusion – at both the Tynebank Road primary school and nursery class were rated ‘‘good’.

Ms Akhtar added: “I’m delighted to see that the effective use of the outdoors as a stimulating learning environment in the early learning and childcare setting has been identified, as well as the school’s successful approach to the teaching of writing – inspiring many children across the primary stages to produce work of a high quality.”

The report also notes two areas for further improvement, with no plans for further visits in connection with the inspection.

East Lothian Council will instead tell parents and carers about the school’s progress.

Areas for improvement focus on ensuring all staff in the early learning and childcare setting are equally involved in the process of change – and continuing to develop “learning pathways” which ensure children in primary school receive their entitlement to a broad general education.