A SCHOOL in Hale has been handed an excellence award for helping its pupils attain the highest educational standards.

Stamford Park Junior School is only the 400th school nationally to achieve the prestigious National Association for Able Children in Education (NACE) challenge award.

The award is given for high quality work by produced by the whole school its teachers and governors and in turn in challenging its pupils, including those with high abilities, to achieve their best.

Headteacher Cathy Downing said: "We are so delighted for our pupils and the school because this is such an achievement and shows the dedication and hard work of the staff at SPJS.

"The parents and governors have provided extensive support for this initiative, which has led to a huge impact in school."

The association exists to support teachers in providing for pupils with high abilities whilst enabling all pupils to flourish. It provides advice, training and resources for teachers, including a self-evaluation framework, which Stamford Park used to review and plan what it provides for more able learners.

NACE chief executive Sue Riley said: “Stamford Park Junior School has worked hard to win the award status. It has shown itself to be committed to developing a school and providing an education where all pupils are challenged to be the best they can be.”

Award assessors were impressed with Stamford Park for its strong leadership and management of provision which keeps the needs of more able learners at the forefront of the school’s work, supported effectively by governors.

Equally, they judged the quality of the school’s work by observing lessons, interviewing the pupils, teachers, parents and governors and by looking at the pupils’ work. The accreditation was made on the basis of the high quality and commitment they saw across the school.