Students across Northumberland secured an improvement over last year in today’s GCSE results.
Coun Robert Arckless, Northumberland County Council’s policy board member for children’s services, said: “I would like to congratulate Northumberland GCSE students for the better results they have achieved this year compared with last year. But it is difficult to make too many comparisons as a result of all the changes nationally with the education qualification system over the last year.
“Across our 16 schools and academies, there is an overall 1.1 per cent increase compared to last year in the proportion of young people achieving five or more A* to C grades (including English and maths) and it is testament to the hard work of pupils and their teachers.
“Overall, schools in Northumberland have achieved 56.3 per cent, which is just above last year’s 55.2 per cent. It has emerged that nationally, English scores have taken a significant hit following a major overhaul of the qualification system. It is understood this is the largest drop in English results since 1988.
“The results in the best of our schools and academies show that our young people can achieve in line with their peers studying in other parts of the country. However, I do still believe that our schools and academies can perform better.
“The county target set for 2014 was 65 per cent gaining the five or more A* to C grades (including English and maths) and this was only achieved by four of our schools this year. The best performing school this year is Hexham’s Queen Elizabeth High where students achieved 75.5 per cent, up 6.5 per cent on the previous year.”
There are two sets of results which schools will publish this year as a result of Government changes. Using the new requirements, approximately 54 per cent of Northumberland students gained the five-plus A* to C grades (including English and maths) at the first time of asking without any resits. It is not possible to compare this figure with previous years as schools were not allowed to count early entries.