A NEWPORT school is celebrating after being given top marks by an Esytn inspection.

High Cross Primary School in Rogerstone was found to be “excellent” in all five areas measured by inspectors in their report.

It is among the highest-scoring Welsh schools under the inspectorate’s new system.

Headteacher Carl Sherlock said the school was delighted to have its hard work recognised: “All the pupils, parents, teachers and support staff put a huge amount into High Cross and now to be highly commended by Estyn is a wonderful achievement. It confirms the commitment and dedication of our school community who have strived to make High Cross such an excellent school.”

The school’s chairman of governors Reverend Richard Mulcahy was also pleased: “It is a school where everybody knows each other and helps each other. It has a great atmosphere which helps children to learn and gives them a great start in life.”

The school has about 240 pupils and has won three green flags and a platinum flag for eco activities as well as awards for ICT and additional education needs.

It has recently turned an office into a sensory room with lava lamps and fairy lights for children with attention deficit disorder. And in recent years it has taken part in the British Council’s Comenius programme. Mr Sherlock and other staff have visited a similar school in Leuven in Belgium and the children regularly communicate online.

The 2007 inspection recommended the school improve the way it operated its bilingual skills and staff worked to implement it.

Deputy headteacher Nicola Coker now runs a competition for all junior school pupils which keeps a score of the classes’ Welsh skills on the wall of the school’s hall.

Natalie Kalahar, teacher in charge of coordinating the infant years, said: “The children are at the heart of everything we do.”