A NEW private school, which has just 11 pupils, has been given a ‘good’ rating by education inspectors.

The Independent Grammar School (IGS), in Durham, which caters for youngsters aged four to nine, has had the results of its first Ofsted inspection.

The opening of the school was approved in June last year, and it offers what it called a ‘no frills’ private education for £2,700, or £52 a week over the course of a calendar year.

Two terms in it has gained the second highest rating from the Government watchdog.

In his report Michael Reeves, lead inspector, said: “Parents are very positive about the school. They are confident that their children are carefully nurtured and that they make strong academic progress.”

The school, in Claypath, was jointly founded by Principal Chris Gray and James Tooley, Professor of Education Policy at Newcastle University.

Mr Gray was previously headteacher at Grindon Hall Christian School, who resigned his post after the school was placed in special measures by Ofsted chiefs.

At IGS however, inspectors said all standards were being met a ‘caring and ambitious school’ had been established.

The report said: “The proprietors, including the headteacher, have ensured that all the independent school standards are met. “They have established a caring and ambitious school, where pupils’ personal development and learning needs are provided for successfully.

“Teachers demonstrate secure subject knowledge and plan lessons which generally meet pupils’ needs.

“As a result, children from reception to year four make strong progress across most aspects of the curriculum.”

The report, published this week, added the quality of teaching and some areas of leadership needed to be improved for the school to move beyond its current ‘Good’ rating.

Mr Gray said: “I think there are some pleasing comments [in the report] and we’re happy that as such a young school, only two terms into its life, we’ve managed to achieve a ‘good’ report.”

He added: “We know there’s a lot of great schools out there, but we also believe in choice and that parents should be able to choose.”

Despite plans to one day outgrow the city, Mr Gray said he could not ‘commit’ on where the school might expand first.

He said: “Our priority is to consolidate what we’ve got here [in Durham], before we think about moving on.

“I think what we’re proving now is that we can walk, but beginning to run is a very different matter.”