Staff at Dane Ghyll Primary School in Barrow spent four days in November 1993 having their every move monitored as part of a new Government inspection process.

And the inspectors who were watching them were being watched themselves!

Dane Ghyll was chosen by the Office for Standards in Education - Ofsted - as a pilot school where they could train and test their new inspectors, who would replace the old HM Inspectorate in 1994.

The official inspections of primary schools were not due to start until September 1994, so headteacher John Darragh was not expecting an inspection in 1993.

It came as a complete surprise to everyone when they got a call in September to tell them the inspectors would be calling in November.

Most of the school was on a field trip when they heard the unexpected news. When they got back it was all hands on deck to prepare.

Most schools would know a year in advance about an inspection but Dane Ghyll only got two months' notice.

"It was very stressful because of the short notice," said Mr Darragh in March 1994. "But having survived that I think we can survive anything."

Because they had seven inspectors instead of the four they would normally have, everyone was under even closer scrutiny

There were general inspectors and specialists on different subjects so teachers were being watched all day on all four days.

As well as assessing whether different subjects were taught to Government standards, inspectors looked at other aspects, including a pupil's personal development, including spiritual, moral, social and cultural.

Also assessed were pupils' behaviour, discipline and attendance record.

A school's management, administration and resources were examined, along with the quality and range of teaching.

Mr Darragh said: "We were very pleased with the report.

"Our quality of teaching was 88 per cent and the national average is somewhere around 70 per cent.

"It has reinforced what we have always felt that the school is maintaining high standards."