GRANGE Community Primary School has been placed in special measures.

The step was taken by the education watchdog after rating the Winsford school ‘inadequate’ across the board following its inspection on October 25.

Inspectors previously told the school it ‘requires improvement’ in 2016.

The latest report says that since the last inspection, leaders have ‘not taken effective and decisive action to prevent a serious decline in the quality of education that the school provides’.

“Leaders have failed to ensure that the quality of teaching reflects the national changes to the curriculum and assessment,” the report says.

“This has resulted in a marked deterioration in outcomes for pupils, which are now inadequate.”

The report says teachers’ expectations of what pupils can and should achieve are ‘too low’ and consequently, too many pupils ‘underachieve considerably’.

It says there has been a decline in pupils’ progress and achievement in reading, writing and mathematics.

It also says that children enter early years with a level of skills and knowledge that is below that typical for their age.

Leadership at the school came in for scathing criticism.

Annette Williams, who was appointed as the school’s temporary executive headteacher in the summer, is commended in the report for steps taken to address some of the issues.

The report says: “School leaders, with the exception of the executive headteacher, have had an overgenerous view of the effectiveness of the school’s work.

“Improvements to teaching, learning and assessment have been limited.

“Current leadership at all levels is not strong enough.

“Many leaders do not have the knowledge, skills and experience required to change the direction of this school.

“As a consequence, senior and middle leadership remains ineffective and the capacity to improve is weak.”

The school’s governing body is also deemed to be ineffective at holding school leaders to account for the quality of education the school provides or for the decline in standards.

It says recent new appointments to the governing body are now bringing about some much-needed change.

Pupils’ behaviour also came in for criticism, although a new ‘good behaviour’ policy has been introduced.

Pupils, parents and carers told the inspector that bullying does occur and not all staff are effective at handling concerns.

The report says the proportion of pupils who are excluded or temporarily excluded from school is too high.

Ms Williams said she has already overseen 'swift progress'.

She said: “Our recent Ofsted report has identified a number of areas where we can make improvements.

“Staff and governors have been working closely together and progress has already been swift, with a transformation of the learning environment, a new curriculum and educational opportunities for pupils.

“We’ve strengthened the leadership team at the school, supported by the local authority, and are working together to ensure that standards improve.

“Since September three new governors, a new headteacher and inclusion leader have joined the school and a programme of support for leaders throughout the school has been introduced.

“We are working with our pupils to improve behaviour, recognising good behaviour and being clear about consequences.

“As a result, expectations have risen, and the number of exclusions has reduced significantly from September.

“The staff have worked tremendously hard over the past four months and I am very proud of all they have accomplished.

“There is still a long way to go, but we have taken a big first step in the right direction.

“I am determined that the school will change and will become a good school. We will focus every effort on our plans to achieve rapid progress in the areas highlighted by Ofsted.”