THE head and staff at Mount St Joseph School have proved they are a class act after being selected to support struggling schools.

Paul Roach is just one of 135 heads in the UK to have been appointed a National Leader of Education (NLE) — and the Farnworth school has been designated as a National Support School (NSS).

The idea is for staff to share their expertise to help raise standards in other schools.

Mr Roach said: "There are so many talented staff and governors at Mount St Joseph with so much to offer others.

"We learn so much and benefit from sharing our strengths and experience — and we do it to make sure all children get the high quality education they deserve.”

Many National Support Schools report improved exam results at the schools they support, as well as their own.

The status is said to recognise Mount St Joseph’s "proven track record of outstanding leadership and management", achieving outstanding results for pupils, and history of helping other schools to improve.

Bernard Waldron, chairman of governors, said “We are thrilled the work the staff and governors have been doing at Mount St Joseph for some years now has been recognised at a national level."

Ofsted judged Mount St Joseph to be outstanding in terms of leadership and management.

School leaders say they now have the opportunity to expand the support they give to other schools — while continuing improve the quality of education provided for their own pupils.

Charlie Taylor, chief executive of the National College for Teaching and Leadership, said: “It’s great that heads like Mr Roach are willing to look beyond their own school gates to help more and more pupils achieve.

"School-to-school support is having a growing impact with benefits for both the schools being supported and those providing the support.”