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30 January 2015, 14:22
Performance tables for GCSE attainment released today confirm Oxfordshire has surged ahead of the national average for the proportion of students achieving 5A*-Cs including English and Maths.
A total of 59.4% of pupils in Oxfordshire gained five A*-C GCSEs including English and Maths compared with 56.8 per cent for state-funded schools across the country.
Oxfordshire’s state-funded schools also outstripped the national average on other key measures:
· A total of 74 per cent of students made expected progress in English (measured from Key Stage 2 to Key Stage 4) in Oxfordshire in 2014. The national figure was 71.8 per cent.
· A total of 71.1 per cent of students made expected progress in Maths (measured from Key Stage 2 to Key Stage 4) in Oxfordshire in 2014. The national figure was 66.7 per cent
· Oxfordshire is now in the top 25 per cent of local authority areas for Maths progress.
New assessment system
Oxfordshire’s jump ahead of national averages has happened in the first year of GCSE results being measured in a different way.
Previously, the official measure was based on the best results achieved by students. Now the Government is insisting that the official measure should be the first results achieved by students – excluding resits.
On the old measure, in 2013, 60.6 per cent of Oxfordshire students gained five A* to C graded GCSEs including English and Maths. The national average was 60.8 per cent.
Melinda Tilley, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Education and Families said: “We have long said we wanted Oxfordshire to be ahead of national averages and it is a delight to be able to say that in 2014 we have achieved that.
“Congratulations must go to staff and students at Oxfordshire schools for this result, and the aim must now be for our schools to get ever better and extend the gap between Oxfordshire and the rest of the country. These results will mean little if next year we are back in line with the national average or below it, so as always, we must guard against complacency.”
She added: “While the new assessment system makes comparisons with previous years very difficult, it does show that Oxfordshire schools delivered good GCSE results first time around without the need for resits. It perhaps also suggests the old system downplayed Oxfordshire's status in relation to the rest of the country.”