A mixed bag for schools' exam results

First published in News

SCHOOLS in the Andover area had mixed fortunes when the GCSE league tables were published recently.

Rookwood School ranked as the third highest performing school in Hampshire with 97 per cent of its pupils who sat GCSEs in 2012 achieving five or more GCSE passes at grades A*- C (including maths and English).

Head teacher Mrs Louise Whetstone, said: “Rookwood is known for its excellent pastoral care, its family atmosphere and for our teachers’ ability to really get the very best from every child that we nurture – the staff and pupils completely deserve this fantastic result.”

Winton Community Academy leapt from 27 per cent to 40 per cent, which, although below the county average of 55 – 59 per cent, meant the school was the most improved in the county.

Winton head teacher Chris McShane said: “Our grade C or better in English improved by 13 per cent against a Hampshire drop of three per cent “Our three levels of progress from KS2 to KS4 in maths improved by over 20 per cent and exceeded the national average for all schools.

“Our overall five A*-C was 65 per cent and every student left the school with at least five GCSEs or equivalent, and over 90 per cent had at least one grade C.

“Winton has improved year on year and this has been due to the breadth of curriculum choice, but in the future the only way we may be able to maintain this is to dismiss league tables in favour of what is right for some of our students.”

Harrow Way Community School achieved the second highest set of results in the school’s history, with 47 per cent achieving over five A*-C including English and maths.

Head teacher, Michael Serridge, said: “We were particularly pleased with the progress in mathematics for our higher attainers, who made exceptional progress. Ninety-eight per cent of these students made the expected levels of progress compared to the national figure of 84 per cent.”

Both The Clere School and Testbourne Community School also saw significant rises in their results to 63 per cent and 76 per cent respectively.

Test Valley School saw the biggest drop in the region from 68 per cent in 2011 to 54 per cent in 2012.

Head teacher Louisa Hiscock said: “We were very disappointed for our pupils and staff who had undoubtedly worked hard for their GCSEs in 2012.

“Every year group is different and we also experienced a dip in our English results.

“In maths, 80 per cent of our pupils achieved A*-C grades, with over 25 per cent achieving A*-A grades, and this needs to be recognised and celebrated.”

John Hanson Community School saw a five per cent drop in 2011 to 54 per cent in 2012.

Head teacher Ian Coombs, said: “As a school we were affected by the English marking debacle, which obviously impacts on the key measure of five good GCSEs including English and maths.

“Had the grade boundaries not been moved by the examination board, the school would have achieved 60 per cent.”

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