AN INSPECTION that led to an Oxford school being rated 'inadequate' was triggered by a safeguarding complaint.

Ofsted said the complaint about The Oxford Academy 'raised serious concerns' and highlighted 'whole-school issues'.

Oxfordshire County Council notified Ofsted after becoming aware of concerns about children's safety at the school in November.

A spokesman for the authority said: "We acted immediately by sending staff with safeguarding expertise to support the school.

"The safety and welfare of children and young people are of paramount importance to the county council."

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While the school is an academy, meaning it is not controlled by the council, the authority still has a responsibility for keeping children in Oxfordshire safe.

The spokesman added: "The county council has no direct responsibility for school performance.

"We believe the former school leaders and governors of the school are accountable for the findings in the Ofsted report."

Following Ofsted's 'inadequate' rating on Friday and the special measures judgement, the council said it is providing 'appropriate support and challenge' to the new interim head and interim academy board to ensure safeguarding issues are dealt with.

Its statement added: "The county council and the new school leadership are all determined that necessary improvements will be made quickly."