A SCHOOL where pupils behaviour is "unacceptably poor" and there is a culture of intimidation has been slammed by inspectors in a damning report.

St Gabriel's RC High School has been placed into "special measures" by the government's education watchdog Ofsted, which found it is "failing to give its pupils an acceptable standard of education".

It is the second high school in Bury to have gone from outstanding to failing in recent years after St Monica's RC High School was placed in special measures in January 2018.

In a letter to parents, chairman of St Gabriel's governing body, Kevin Coen said the school is "disappointed" with the judgement, adding that a "two-day snapshot inspection" does not accurately reflect the school.

According to inspectors, behaviour of a "substantial number" of pupils during breaks was "unacceptably poor" and created a culture which at times can be "intimidating".

And some teachers were found to let pupils out of classrooms too early and allow them to stop learning before the the lesson ended.

Ofsted inspectors reported that as "substantial proportion" of pupils were found to have poor attitudes towards their learning, with some pupils being "very disrespectful to adults".

They also found that some pupils "openly defy staff" and "swearing and the use of bad language is common."

The reported added: "Pupils openly defy school policies, including those regarding uniform and those prohibiting fizzy, sugary drinks and the use of mobile phones."

Inspectors also found "too few pupils show pride in their work and an ambition to succeed" and those that do "tend to be girls."

Ofsted inspectors found that the school has been in "decline over a number of years" with governors, the diocese and the local authority being too slow to spot the fall in standards and did not hold "senior leaders to account for their failings for far too long".

"Although the current senior leadership team realised the school was not as good as it once was, it was not aware of the extend of its decline, " said inspectors.

But they added that a drive to improve behaviour in classroom was beginning to work, with the introduction of rewards for good behaviour, attitudes and learning.

Quality of teaching was marked as inadequate, with them accepting work from boys that is inaccurate, slapdash or incomplete.

Some teachers did not have a "sufficient grasp" of the curriculum they are expected to teach and some teachers allow pupils to "stop learning well before the end of lessons" and some let their pupils out of their classrooms "far too early" found inspectors.

Boys and disadvantaged pupils were said to have found to have made poor progress over the past three years.

Ofsted reported: "Since they started in the school, pupils currently in Year 9 have made weak progress. The progress made by Year 9 disadvantaged pupils is particularly poor. As in other year

groups, boys are underperforming considerably, particularly in English."

The school was praised for its pastoral care, its pupil attendance record  and its careers education.

Mr Coen said in the letter, the senior leadership of the school had been strengthened, an action plan has been put in place including the recruitment of a headteacher. He said that St Gabriel's RC School was receiving support from a "highly regarded teaching school".

The letter concludes: "At the last inspection in 2011 St Gabriel’s was judged to be an outstanding school and we firmly believe that status is achievable again. The staff and governors are proud of the children and are proud that the high standards of care and support for our ‘charming’ pupils is recognised, but we will need your continued support and trust as we start the next stages of our journey. The Governing Body and staff at the school are fully committed to implementing the changes necessary to attain the improvements required. Working together we are confident that we will achieve that goal."