IT was smiles all round for staff and students of a schools partnership in Bicester as it celebrated a double success.

The Cooper School kept its 'good' rating – Ofsted's second highest – after a recent inspection while Glory Farm Primary School upped its from 'requires improvement' – Ofsted's second lowest.

The success has been put down to the close working between the schools after both became academies as part of The Bicester Learning Academy Trust.

The trust's executive headteacher Ben Baxter said: "Of course we are really proud, both reports have a strong emphasis on the way our schools work together, how successful that has been and the impact on pupils and teachers."

Separate Ofsted inspections were carried out at the schools in June – the first for both since joining the trust, which was launched in 2014.

The Cooper School kept its 'good rating' as inspectors highlighted the Churchill Road school's 'caring, nurturing and inclusive ethos'.

Inspectors added: "The partnership with Glory Farm Primary School, as part of the Bicester Learning Academy, is having a positive impact on pupils’ progress overall."

It also highlighted the work between schools, including visits for pupils between each school, and teachers working at both sites as well as sharing expertise between schools.

It added: "These strategies are ensuring that pupils make the transfer from school to school with much greater confidence.

"In addition, teachers at The Cooper School are more aware of what pupils already know and can do when they arrive in Year 7.

"As a result, work is not repeated unnecessarily and pupils are making better progress over time."

At its last inspection before becoming an academy Glory Farm was rated 'requires improvement.'

Headteacher Ian Elkington said: "We are absolutely delighted.

"Inspectors have stated that Glory Farm is, ‘ambitious for pupils and staff and have a shared vision for the education we want to provide.'

"We are particularly proud of the fact that we have been judged to be ‘relentless’ in our efforts to keep improving outcomes for all groups of pupils, with pupils making good progress overall.

"Indeed, inspectors noted that the pupil’s progress has improved since the school joined the multi-academy trust."

The Bicester Learning Academy Trust has said it will not be complacent and is aiming to bag the 'outstanding' ratings – Ofsted's highest.

Mr Elkington added: "We are extremely proud of our children, staff and parents.

"This has been a real team effort."