York students congratulated on their GCSE (Key Stage 4) results

Pupils, parents, teachers and children’s services leaders are today (Thursday 23 August) congratulating learners across the city on achieving excellent GCSE results.

The results follow significant changes in the grading system in the last two years, which saw a grading system of 9-1 introduced in English language, English literature and mathematics last year, being rolled out to 20 more subjects this year.

Provisional results show that 70.6% of pupils gained grade 4+ in English and maths which is expected to be above the national average.

Grade 5+ in English and maths are in line with last year’s results, and also expected to be above the national average.

Additionally, the average points score for six core subjects (known as the English Baccalaureate or EBacc) is 4.56 in York this year. Pupils who gain grade 9-4 in English, maths, two science subjects, a modern foreign language and a humanities subject achieve EBacc.

Exam results league tables for York published

Disappointing results at York High
Exam results in York click to access more infromation

Exam results in York click to access more information

The Department for Education has published the results of GCSE exams taken last year. They make grim reading for the York High School where success rates have plunged.

Of course, there may be many reasons for this and parents will be expecting a full explanation from the head teacher and his school governors in due course. 

York schools generally performed better than the rest of the UK with 64% of pupils achieving good GCSE results against an a national average of 57%.

From next year, schools in England will be measured on what is known as Progress 8. Progress 8 will replace the five or more good GCSEs, including maths and English, benchmark as the key measure for all secondary schools.

Progress 8 assesses the progress pupils make between Key Stage 2 tests taken at the end of primary school and their performance in a specified mixture of eight subjects at the end of secondary school. Schools will be given a score based on how their pupils have progressed compared to the national average.

This year, schools were given the option to “opt in” for Progress 8 and 327 schools (around 10%) took this up.

Nationally, head teachers have long complained measuring success on the basis of GCSE results alone is unfair as it does not take into account the intake of the school.

But ministers have maintained parents want and need simple and easy-to-digest information about schools.

The difference in achievement by gender is startling, with roughly a fifth fewer boys than girls reaching the end of Key Stage 4 with a good set of GCSEs.

Some 61.8% of girls got five good GCSEs, including English and maths, compared with 52.5% of their male peers.

And fewer boys than girls made at least the expected level of progress – 65.9% of boys opposed to 76.5% of girls.

More girls (29.3%) than boys achieved the English Baccalaureate (EBacc), which requires GCSEs in two sciences, a language, history or geography, as well as English and maths. Only 19.5% of boys obtained it.

Overall, 24.3% of pupils achieved the EBacc.

There was also a marked difference between the performance of disadvantaged pupils (those eligible for the pupil premium) and their more advantaged peers, with just 36.7% getting five good GCSEs, including maths and English, compared to 64.7%.

The poorest performing local authority was Knowsley on Merseyside, where 37.4% of pupils met the required standard, compared to the national average of 57.1%.

York High head criticises GCSE exam system

York HighCall for inquiry into English Language marks

In a comment to local media York High School in Acomb head teacher David Ellis said  had mixed emotions when he looked at the 2015 GCSE results this morning.

He was delighted for pupils Edward Bagnall and Owen Gibson who achieved five and four A* grades respectively but was very disappointed with some other aspects of the results.

Mr Ellis said: “As always our young people supported by the staff at York High have worked incredibly hard, and young people, often with significant barriers to overcome have made huge progress and we are very proud of them.”

He added: “Whilst we are delighted with the outcomes for some of our students it is clear that many of our young people around the crucial grade C border have been punished by the changes to the exam system that are currently taking place.”

Mr Ellis was particularly concerned about English. He said: “It is clear that something has gone seriously wrong with the system when the grades in English Language have fallen significantly whilst at the same time English Literature results have improved dramatically. The same pupils with the same teachers have radically different outcomes in these two similar subjects. This will have significant implications for the young people concerned and for our school”

Mr Ellis explained that York High will be seeking to have the English Language papers remarked as the grades allocated to students were well below those expected even though in other subjects students had achieved in line with expectations. “It is clear to us that something has gone wrong with the examination system either as a result of poor marking and or major changes in the grade boundaries.

“The next few days will be very anxious ones for pupils, their parents and for staff at our school. This cannot be right and it is an issue that is being identified by schools across the country and we will be working with them to ensure we get a fair deal for our students”

York High school also suffered a decline in exam success last year

Key exam results success for York children

KS2Liberal Democrat Councillors have welcomed government figures released today (11 December) which show that York pupils are continuing to perform above the national average in their Key Stage 2 tests, ranking the city’s results second only to those of the East Riding in Yorkshire and Humber.

The Department for Education (DfE) published the final results for the June 2014 Key Stage 2 tests for 11 year olds. For York, these results show that:

Results at Level 4+ (the expected level of achievement for 11 year olds) : 79% of pupils achieved level 4 or above in reading, writing and maths (in line with the national average).

Results at Level 5+ (the higher level): 25% of pupils achieved level 5 or above in reading, writing and maths (1 percentage point above the national average).

York celebrates A-level results success

Children’s  in York today (14 August) achieved another excellent set of results in this year’s A-level examinations.

Provisional results for York school sixth forms and York College show that the very high standards of previous years have been maintained. Initial results for the city indicate that attainment is likely to be well above national levels.