An alliance of Stockton schools has received a boost to its work to raise standards after one of its members was handed a key role in training the teachers of tomorrow.
Campus Stockton was established in 2012 to enable schools, academies and colleges to take a collective approach to improvement with support from Stockton Council.
Now, one of its members - The Links Primary School in Eaglescliffe - has been granted National Teaching School status.
The move will see the school take a leading role in recruiting and training new teachers, identifying leadership potential and providing support for other schools.
The Links will be supported in its new role by Myton Park Primary and secondary partners Conyers, Egglescliffe and Northfield.
Headteacher, Angela Puddick, said: "We are delighted to be named as one of only 60 schools in England to be granted National Teaching School status in the latest round.
"However, this achievement is not ours alone because we recognise the great work done by our alliance partners, who have supported us with this designation and we look forward to working with them.
"It is a journey that has been many years in the making and this success owes much to the immeasurable contribution of the late John Morgan, former head teacher of at Conyers School in Yarm.
"John was a huge force in initiating and driving forward Stockton's ambition of securing a National Teaching School and we have so much to thank him for today."
Teaching schools must be rated "outstanding" by Ofsted. They work in partnership with other schools to ensure high quality school-led initial teacher training and professional development opportunities for teachers at all stages of their career.
They raise standards through school-to-school support, engage in research and development, and ensure that the most talented school leaders are spotted and supported to become successful headteachers.
Councillor Ann McCoy, Stockton Council's Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: "The award of National Teaching School status to The Links Primary School represents a huge step forward for Campus Stockton and everything it stands for. I'd like to extend my thanks and congratulations to everybody involved.
"Though the education system has changed beyond recognition in recent years we are proud to have retained a 'family of schools' approach in Stockton. It is an approach founded on a strong commitment among members - whether they are a school, an academy or a college - to working together to support one another.
"Ultimately, we all want the same thing and that is to provide the Borough's young people with access to the best possible learning opportunities, with no child left behind. By having a National Teaching School in its ranks, Campus Stockton can take its relentless pursuit of school improvement to a whole new level."
The National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) has responsibility, in partnership with headteachers from the Teaching Schools Council, for the designation and quality of the teaching schools programme.
Charlie Taylor, the chief executive of NCTL, said: "The Links Primary should be very proud of this achievement. The school has been recognised as a centre of excellence in its area, with an outstanding performance and a track record of raising standards through supporting other schools. There are now 600 teaching schools around the country with more to follow."