A PRIMARY school is to be the subject of a debate in the House of Commons after an MP fighting to save its reputation secured a half-hour slot.

Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland MP Ashok Kumar will raise the case of Belmont Primary School, Guisborough, east Cleveland, whose parents and teachers believe it was unfairly criticised by Government inspectors.

The school asked Dr Kumar to raise the issue to save its reputation, following the publication of a damning Ofsted report in March last year.

The report left staff and parents smarting with the criticisms after it said that the school had "serious weaknesses".

It also drew attention to the "unsatisfactory" quality of some of the teaching and aspects of leadership and management, and said it had not sufficiently improved.

But Dr Kumar said: "The school believes there were lots of holes in the inspection. The teachers and the head approached me and also tried to appeal against the verdict."

The MP wrote to the Education Secretary of the time David Blunkett, but he said he received no satisfactory response.

He appealed to the Parliamentary Ombudsman who was unable to intervene in the matter.

Dr Kumar said: "This has been an horrendous experience. It is a good school - well respected by parents and teachers."

The head of Belmont, Colin Linthwaite, was unavailable for comment.