Newcastle schools buck the trend as national results show downturn
Official 2014 GCSE results published today confirm that a higher proportion of Newcastle pupils have achieved the expected standard than elsewhere in the country nationally or across the region.
Changes to the way figures are calculated have seen performance in many schools drop. The new measure reduces the equivalent value of vocational qualifications and prevents schools from including re-sits in their results.
Newcastle schools have bucked the trend by maintaining last year’s highest ever performance despite the new tougher measures and exceeding the national average for the first time. In all but 13 out of 150 local authorities, the overall headline GCSE figure has fallen compared to last year.
Results for Newcastle state-funded schools show that:
57.3% of pupils achieved the expected standard of 5 or more A*-C graded GCSEs or equivalent including English and maths compared to 56.8% of pupils in similar schools nationally and 54.6% in the North East
71.7% of pupils made expected progress or better in English
65.6% of pupils made expected progress or better in mathematics
Newcastle’s results have improved consistently over a number of years, closing the gap to the national average and now exceeding it for the first time. The success at GCSE is a result of achievements across all stages of education in the city, which is reflected in year on year improvements in Ofsted inspection judgements and pupil attainment.
Councillor Joanne Kingsland, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said “We are rightly proud of the achievements of all our children and young people and they should be too. I’d like to take this opportunity to celebrate their successes and to thank all of our teachers and support staff in schools who deserve recognition and gratitude for the great work that they do”
Martin Surtees, Assistant Director, Education said "Congratulations to all of Newcastle's schools who are doing a great job in teaching and supporting the young people of the city to achieve the qualifications, skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the next stage of their lives. GCSEs are the culmination of years of hard work by the pupils themselves, and of those who have taught them throughout their school career, as well as the support and encouragement of their families and friends"
Data published by Ofsted in November showed that 96% of pupils in Newcastle go to primary schools which Ofsted judged to be good or outstanding, placing us third out of 150 local authorities nationally and second in the region. And 84% of pupils attend a good or outstanding secondary school, also well above average.