A headteacher has been suspended amid an investigation into the management and financial practices at a primary school.

Harrow Borough Council and the governing body of Whitchurch First School & Nursery have announced plans to launch the independent investigation following an internal audit report.

The council has said it will consult with the governing body about setting up a new interim executive board to take over the governing of the school from headteacher Anne Winstrom, who has been suspended from duty.

A spokesman for the council said this is to “preserve the impartiality of the investigation” at the school, which is rated 'outstanding' by Ofsted.

Meanwhile, Michael Baxter will take over as interim headteacher for the remainder of the summer term.

Mr Baxter has 30 years experience in primary and infant education, including a decade as a headteacher and inspector.

Formerly regional director for the foundation stage, he has also worked most recently as education professional lead for the council.

Chris Spencer, Harrow Council’s corporate director for children and families, said: “We expect to conclude the independent investigation swiftly, and it is important to stress there will be no disruption to children or the outstanding education that they receive at Whitchurch.”