Leeds secondary schools bucked a downward national trend as the city achieved record GCSE results this summer, according to new figures.
Tables from the Department for Education show that the level of 16-year-olds in Leeds earning five good GCSEs including English and maths rose to 56.6 per cent up from 55 per cent the year before.
This was the highest level ever achieved in the city although it still means that nearly 3,500 pupils finished school without achieving the five A* to C benchmark.
Yorkshire also bucked the national trend as this summer’s improved results saw it climb off the bottom of a league table measuring performance by regions. Nationally fewer teenagers scored at least five Cs including English and maths.
In total, 58.6 per cent of pupils in England reached the threshold, down 0.8 per cent on last year, according to statistics based on provisional GCSE results. Statisticians suggested that the fall was down to a dramatic fall in the proportion of private school pupils sitting GCSE English.
Leeds City Council’s executive member for children’s services Coun Judith Blake said: “I am delighted that these official figures confirm what our first indications showed us back in August which is that our schools have again improved.
“It is particularly pleasing against a backdrop of a decline in the numbers getting five A* to C, including English and maths, nationally.”
She said schools, teachers and pupils deserve credit for achieving this success after last summer’s GCSE grading row which had shaken a lot of teachers’ belief in the system.
Leeds City Council was involved in a failed national legal bid to get exam marks overturned after it emerged that the exam boards AQA and EdExcel had moved the grade boundaries mid-year between January and June meaning the same standard of work could get two different grades depending on when it was marked.