THE number of pupils in Warwickshire achieving five or more GCSE grades A*-C has risen for the fourth consecutive year.
Around 6000 pupils sat GCSEs in the summer of 2011 and 61 per cent achieved five or more grades A*-C or equivalent, including GCSE English and maths, 2 percentage points more than 2010.
The proportion of pupils reaching this level has risen consistently in recent years. In 2007 it was fewer than half of all pupils (48 per cent), meaning that in the last four years results have risen by 13 percentage points.
Cllr Heather Timms, Warwickshire County Council’s Portfolio Holder for Children, Young People and Families, said: “These results are the product of more than 11 years of learning by these pupils and teaching by their teachers throughout their primary and secondary school years, and they should all be proud of their success.”
There has also been good news in the Key Stage 5 results with the overall pass rate for A level subjects at 99 per cent and success noted in other level 3 qualifications such as BTECs, NVQs and other practical and applied learning qualifications. This means that over 4000 students this year acquired the equivalent of at least two A level passes.
The average points score per level 3 examination entry was
215 points, two points higher than last year, putting the average grade for A level and equivalent examinations at just above a grade C and continuing to rise.
Cllr Timms added: “These results are about much more than GCSEs and A levels. Last year there were around 14 000 16 to 19 year old students in Warwickshire schools and colleges, and many have gained successful results in a range of vocationally related qualifications, including BTECs and National Vocational Qualifications.”
Pupils currently in Year 11 are the last ones who can legally finish their education or training after taking GCSE examinations at 16. This is because the Government is raising the “participation age”, and young people will be required to stay in full or part-time education or training until the end of the academic year in which they turn 17.
In recent years over 90 per cent of young people in Warwickshire have continued to study for at least another year – either at a sixth form, in college or with another provider, as an apprentice, or in a job with training – but all today’s young people in Year 10 will have to do so.
Pupils in Year 9 will have to continue until their 18th birthdays.