The headteacher of a Baldock school has expressed her delight after a recent Ofsted inspection led to an improved rating.

St Mary's Church of England VC Infant School attained a Good rating, an upgrade on the Requires Improvement judgement they had received during their previous inspection in 2019.

Inspectors said that the pupils are "well cared for ... confident, friendly and happy."

They also praised the "wide range" of extra-curricular activities, the "significant improvements to the curriculum" since 2019, and the ways in which teachers conduct their classes.

Inspectors also said that the school has "effective" arrangements in place for safeguarding.

Verity Edey, the school's headteacher, took over shortly before the inspection in 2019.

She said they are "very proud" to have achieved the Good rating after a difficult period for schools.

Ms Edey says that it has been "a really tough journey", with "huge changes" needed when she arrived.

"Then we hit the national lockdown which brought a huge challenge for that year and a half, to try to move forward quickly enough and at the speed that I wanted to.

"It was a baptism of fire in the first year or so.

"But we spent the time building a really broad and ambitious curriculum. And at the start of 2022, I had a team of six new teachers.

"With the recruitment crisis that everyone is facing nationally, recruitment has been an issue since I arrived here."

She paid tribute to her team of teachers, describing them as "absolutely incredible".

"They all come with huge amounts of passion and drive - and that is what this school needed to move it forward.

"It's really tough to move from requires improvement to good, it's a huge thing, so we are really, really delighted.

"It was lovely on the day to hear the inspector talking to the children, and the children saying they're really happy here, and that they love all the enrichment activities that we do with them."

Ms Edey was particularly pleased that the report mentioned the wellbeing support given to staff at the school.

She said that "being a teacher is a hard job", and that they've done a "huge amount" to make sure they are looked after, such as hiring an on-site pastoral leader who works with both staff and pupils.

Ms Edey also thanked Herts for Learning and the Diocoese of St Albans, who have both supported the school since she arrived.