A SCHOOL which was recently designated a Performing Arts College has been awarded top marks by a national arts scheme.

Wolsingham School and Community College, in Weardale, has earned an Arts Mark Gold standard, which recognises outstanding achievement across all creative subjects including drama, English literature, dance, music and media studies.

Various forms of art are used across the school curriculum and a collaboration with theatre group Jack Drum has helped science students understand difficult concepts.

The school also stages music and theatre performances for the Weardale community.

A recent drama, based loosely on three Shakespeare plays, toured several venues.

Deputy headteacher John Maddison, who compiled the application to the Arts Council, said: "This is yet another fantastic achievement for the school. The staff and students are thrilled to receive the highest recognition possible for their ongoing use of art subjects in the curriculum."