It's done it again – tiny Cockwood Primary School is teaching other schools a lesson or two.

The school – mentioned nationwide four years ago by former Chief Inspector of schools Chris Woodhead as an example to others – has been given another top-class mark by education inspectors for the way it has improved still further.

In his l998 report, Mr Woodhead said Cockwood was a 'particularly successful school where pupils achieve high standards in literacy and numeracy and make an excellent start to their education'.

Now an Ofsted report has found the school, which has 77 pupils, to be even better.

Head teacher Sue Jezard said she was proud and pleased with the report – the fifth Ofsted she had been through as head, deputy head and a senior teacher.

'She said: 'The report reflects exactly what the inspector saw and the way in which we work. It certainly captures the ethos that is at the heart of Cockwood Primary School.

'There is a very strong team here which includes the children and we all work together.

'It's the happiest place I've ever worked in and I feel that it is a privilege to be part of such a team. Now we want to build on this success and enhance further the quality of teaching and learning taking place.'

Two inspectors spent two days at the school in December and found an exceptionally high standard of teaching. Nearly 10 per cent of lessons they watched they classed as excellent, more than 54 per cent very good and 36 per cent good.

Their conclusion: 'This is a very effective school. Very good leadership and management by the head teacher and governors, high quality teaching and a rich curricular provision result in pupils achieving very well and reaching high standards by the time they leave school.

'The school has improved at a good rate since it was first inspected in March l998.'

While pupils broadly were average on joining the school, their level of achievement on leaving at 11 years old gave results placing them in the top five per cent in the country.

The report said: 'The school's results have been improving to a greater extent each year than the national trend.'

The school has a severe space shortage but Sue Jezard said it was hoping for a mezzanine floor to be laid to provide a staff room and resources area.

A county council spokesman confirmed this was one scheme to be considered for inclusion in the authority's new capital programme.