My 8 year old daughter is in year three and can be so negative about school. She was really close friends with a girl who recently left and TBH I think this girl has contributed to some of my daughter's negativity. She says things like the work is boring, the teachers are strict, none of the boys like her, she doesn't have a best friend since this other girl left and all the other girls are just interested in boys. Any suggestions how I can help her develop more confidence, motivation etc? When I spoke to the teacher on parent's evening he just said she was a nice kid who mixed well with the others.
It is, unfortunately, always a problem if a child has one particular friend because there can be issues if this child leaves or dominates the friendship. Both seem to have happened to your DD. I am amazed she says all the other girls are interested in boys - at 8 years old? When reading this, I am not sure my DDs would have wanted these girls as friends either!
However, I think you will find the situation is not as bad as your DD is saying. Do you think the teacher is strict? You met him. Explain that all teachers have rules and they are there so that everyone can learn. Talk through why she thinks he is strict and discuss the issues she raises.
Can you find out who she is playing with and invite a child or two round to tea and see what they talk about. Ask her who she would like to invite. Could she join any clubs, eg dancing, sport and make new friends this way. I think you have to talk up the positive aspects of school, eg good marks, being chosen for something, doing well at sport, talking about something funny that happened. Chatting about school in a breezy, happy, way might lift her mood.