A BLACKBURN primary school has been placed into special measures after Ofsted officials discovered it had not made significant improvements since its last inspection.

Hawthorns Junior School, St James Road, Blackburn, was rated inadequate, or grade four, as the ‘teaching, especially in mathematics, was not good enough to raise attainment and improve progress.’ In its last inspection in 2006 the school was rated good and given a grade two.

The 308-pupil school was told to raise achievement in all subjects, improve teaching, student evaluation and attendance.

But Inspector Marie Cordey did say pupils enjoyed their learning and there was a good quality of teaching in English.

Inspector Corder said: ”Although some instability in staffing has been a barrier, too little has been done to establish a clear strategy for improvement.

“Attainment in mathematics is particularly low. This is because the poorly planned mathematics curriculum leads to incomplete coverage of what is required.

“Work is not adapted well enough to match pupils' needs or abilities and to fill in the growing gaps in pupils' learning.

“Pupils are not sufficiently aware of how well they are doing or how to improve their work.

However she said: “For the most part, the headteacher and other senior leaders appreciate what needs to be done to bring about improvement, but the leaders' judgement of the quality of teaching, and the use of assessment to support learning, is inaccurate. School leaders are not demonstrating the capacity to sustain improvement.

“There has been insufficient time for the actions of recent senior appointments to improve performance.”

Special measures is when a school has been found by Ofsted to be inadequate.

The local education authority get powers to run the school, if required, and send in troubleshooters. Schools are only be removed from special measures when standards improve to set targets.