STANDARDS at Hadleigh Infant and Nursery school are getting better – but the school has again been told it must improve.

Ofsted inspectors revisited the school, in Bilton Road, after it was deemed to “require improvement”

in January.

The earlier visit found ineffective middle-management, poor teaching and pupils not progressing as fast as they should have been.

Inspectors returned last month and decided the school needed to improve further, though they conceded things were looking up in some areas.

Improvements in teaching and leadership were praised, with teachers and teaching assistants now getting regular training.

Ofsted said standards were being raised, with more pupils now performing to the expected level.

Teachers have been regularly observed in the classrooms.

Inspectors highlighted the need to improve the marking of maths work, for pupils to be “stretched to think” more often and for pupils to be helped more when they misunderstood things they were told.

Headteacher Brenda Dalley said: “We are relieved and happy Ofsted felt we were taking effective action.”

The inspectors had been particularly impressed with the efforts the school had made on the teaching of English through the method known as phonics, she said, adding: “It’s really good to have that recognised.

“With maths, we actually had a maths consultant in working with Key Stage 1 teachers. It is a case of improving what we are doing, rather than changing anything.

We preferred to get a professional in.”

Mrs Dalley said the report confirmed the things the school had put into place had been productive.

She added: “We haven’t had any children taken away from the school and the parents have been fantastically supportive.

“The good thing is it’s improving us and giving us a chance to reflect on what we are doing and make things better.”

The school was praised for the action plan it brought in after the last inspection, though the Ofsted report says it still needs to be clearer about the way it measures successes.

In the report, lead inspector Tim Bristow writes: “Governors continue to be effective and are applying the necessary pressure required to drive improvement rapidly. They keep careful checks on the work of school leaders and rightly challenge the headteacher to ensure that the school gets back to good quickly.”

Ofsted will visit again in November to decide if the school is ready for its next full, formal inspection.