PARENTS who took over a school to save it from financial ruin are celebrating after it received the seal of approval from education inspectors.

Rivington Park Independent School, in Horwich, was described as a good school with outstanding features by Ofsted.

Parents who stepped in at the 11th hour to pledge £100,000 in June of last year say the findings show their decision was the right one.

A new board of directors consisting of five parents was appointed.

Elaine Spurr, whose 12-year-old daughter Sarah attends the school, is a shareholder and a parent-teacher association member.

She said: “It is a great reward for all the teachers and staff to have Ofsted recognise so much outstanding practice.

“This school is too good for us to sit back and to have allowed it to close over the summer.”

Her husband, Ian, said: “As parents, we always had faith in the direction of the school and we are delighted that both the school and nursery have had such a successful year since June.”

The school’s previous directors had realised it was in financial difficulty in December, 2008, mainly due to unpaid fees and the parents stepped in to help.

Ofsted inspectors said: “Rivington Park is a good school which provides a good standards of education.

“As a result of good teaching, most pupils make at least good progress in their learning and, for some, it is outstanding.

“The pupils attend regularly, enjoy school and value the small classes and individual attention they receive.”

The pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development was found to be “outstanding”.

In its report, Ofsted also said that the majority of the children had developed skills above that expected for their age by the end of the reception year. Headteacher Michael Ruaux said: “We had achieved a great deal by June, 2009, when our parents and some of our staff fought very hard to allow the school not only to stay open but to have a long term, secure future.

“It is a great achievement for the school to have achieved an Ofsted report which has identified outstanding practice in some areas.

“To have done so after the upheavals of the summer is remarkable and a credit to our staff team, parents, and pupils.

“It justifies our decision to keep the school alive when it would have been much easier for everyone to give up.”