Education standards continue to rise at GCSE and A level

A GOV.UK press release reports that educational standards continue to rise across England’s secondary schools, as results published today (Thursday 25 January) show more young people from disadvantaged backgrounds achieving good grades in the core academic subjects.

Following the introduction of more rigorous GCSE and A levels to match the best education systems in the world, the data shows:

  • The attainment gap between disadvantaged secondary school pupils and their peers has narrowed by 3.2% since last year and 10% since 2011;

  • Results for Multi Academy Trusts, with Harris Federation, The Thinking Schools Academy Trust and The Diocese of Westminster Academy Trust among the top MAT performers;

  • Schools in London continue to perform strongly, with 12 schools in the top 20 for the government’s pupil progress measure (Progress 8); and

  • More pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds, SEN pupils and pupils on free school meals being entered for EBacc subjects since last year – helping ensure pupils have the knowledge and skills they need for future success.

  • The number of students entering at least four of the five subject areas which are part of the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) – maths, English, sciences, humanities and modern foreign languages (MFL) have increased by 4.8 percentage points this year – up to 82.0% in 2017; and

  • GCSE (A*-C) pass rates at 16-18 have increased in English, up from 22.8% to 27.1%, and total entries to English and maths GCSEs by 16-18 students increased by 26.3 percentage points and 13.6 percentage points respectively. This will help ensure pupils leave their education with the knowledge and skills they need for future success.

  • Confirmation of the top performing schools based on Progress 8 measures, which are as follows:

    1. Tauheedul Islam Girls’ High School, Blackburn;

    2. Wembley High Technology College, London;

    3. Taheedul Islam Boys’ High School, Blackburn;

    4. Harris Academy Battersea, London; and

    5. The Steiner Academy Hereford, Herefordshire.

Read more info and stats Education standards continue to rise at GCSE and A level

Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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Categories: EBacc, Exams, Further Education, Secondary and SEN.


  1. wasateacher

    how very convenient that the Government releases information which has been challenged in so many ways in order to push through its continued drive to academise all schools. Unfortunately the original link for Education DataLab’s research doesn’t seem to work. However, this is the BBC report on it: As long as academy trusts are not held accountable for their covert selection and as long as they are allowed to dump schools which do not show them in a good light, we will continue to be fed this myth that academisation is good for education, whereas the reverse is true. It is an expensive, chaotic system which offers no stability.

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