A pre-school has closed after a toddler was slapped by a member of staff.

Police investigated the incident at Merryfield Pre-School in Station Road, Chingford, involving a girl aged 16 months after being alerted by her mother, Nuraya Asiroglu.

Officers decided the incident on March 27 was not serious enough to warrant a criminal investigation, despite the slap being heard throughout the room and girl being left in tears.

A police spokeswoman said: "Detectives can confirm the incident was dealt with internally by the school and did not require any further police involvement."

Headteacher Gary Wilson reported the incident to Ofsted, saying the member of staff “overreacted” to the child in response to her pulling another child’s hair.

'On seeing this, the staff member slapped the child on her hand,” he added.

'This was witnessed by one of our practitioners who immediately informed one of her colleagues and the school’s manager.”

Ofsted then launched an investigation and assessed standards at the school, which had been previously rated good.

But inspectors ranked the school as inadequate, although the reasons for this have not been made public.

He then decided to close the school.

In a letter to parents, he said: "We have recently been subjected to an Ofsted inspection.

"We are not permitted to tell you the outcome of that inspection although we do not expect our hard work to be reflected in the outcome.

"Regardless of that outcome I find myself unable to work under the guidance of our regulatory body any longer."

Ms Asiroglu said she was unhappy about how the issue was handled, claiming she was made to feel like she and her daughter had done something wrong.

She pulled her daughter out of the nursery weeks after the incident.

"Emotionally, I felt very distraught and had lost all my trust and faith in the nursery," added Mrs Asiroglu.