LEAGUE tables published today show Sunderland schools are getting top marks when it comes to improving.
An impressive set of results showed another increase in the number of students in the city gaining one of the Government’s benchmarks of five or more GCSEs grades A*-C including maths and English.
Across Sunderland the figure rose from 55.4 per cent in 2011 to 62.6 per cent last year, a rise of more than seven per cent.
Among the schools which saw huge improvements in the number of children gaining the top grades, were Washington School, Red House Academy and Castle View Enterprise Academy.
Washington School saw a rise in the number of pupils gaining five or more A*-C including maths and English soar from 38 per cent in 2011 to an impressive 63 per cent last year, it also saw an increase in the number of pupils gaining five A*-C grades in any subject from 79 per cent to 94 per cent.
Red House saw an increase in the top grades with maths an English from 19 per cent to 36 per cent and Castle View’s figures for the benchmark rose from 54 per cent to 67.
Castle View Enterprise Academy and Farringdon Community Sports College shared a top slot of 100 per cent of pupils leaving school with five of more A*-C GCSEs in any subject.
It was Grindon Hall Christian School which clinched the top benchmark figures with 88 per cent of youngsters gaining five A*-C GCSEs including maths and English and also a huge 61 per cent of students passing the English Baccalaureate, EBacc.
The EBacc was introduced by the Goverment as a performance measure in 2010. It is not a qualification in itself, but recognises when a student has clinched top grades in the core subjects of English, maths, two sciences, a language and either history or geography.
Chris Gray, headteacher at Grindon Hall, which became the city’s first free school in September, has always encouraged his students to study core subjects to GCSE level and is a supporter of the EBacc.
He said: “I am really delighted with these latest results, especially for the EBacc, which is a good measure of how well schools are performing.”
Portfolio Holder for Children’s Services at Sunderland City Council, Councillor Pat Smith, said: “Thanks to the hard work of everyone in our schools, students in Sunderland achieved the best and most improved GCSE results in the region last year.
“Year on year we are seeing better and improving GCSE results. We can be very proud of the fact that whilst there has been a drop nationally in GCSE results, Sunderland has seen a significant increase in outcomes which places us above the national average.
“We will continue to work hard to maintain the progress made over the years in raising attainment at GCSE and A level. The results on which these league tables are based show the dedication of students, staff and governors across all schools and colleges, and the supportive network of family and friends. We congratulate them all.”