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Schools struggle with low rankings in league tables
6:00am Friday 13th December 2013 in Echo News
SOUTH Essex has two of the worst performing local authorities, with a low percentage of their pupils attending good schools, Ofsted has revealed.
According to the school regulator, 40 per cent of Southend’s primary schools are not ranked either good or outstanding – and require improvement.
Only five authorities posted worse results, including Thurrock – which is ranked 148 out of 150 councils – with 41 per cent of its primaries deemed below standard by the education watchdog.
James Courtenay, councillor responsible for education at Southend Council, said: “Since I’ve been in my post I remember we had schools that were ranked all as good, so in some respects we’re the victims of our own success.
“The only way is down from there.
“I’m not making excuses either, but Ofsted has changed the categories and it’s widely accepted across the board it has got harsher.
“Our challenge now is to make sure our schools improve.
“We’re putting schools into clusters to ensure good schools are pairing up with others to help narrow the gap.”
Last year’s bottom two authorities – Coventry and Derby – saw an increase in the percentage of pupils at good or outstanding schools by 22 per cent and 26 per cent respectively–more than double the rate of improvement in Thurrock.
But the figures for secondary schools in both authorities are rosier.
Just eight per cent of Thurrock’s secondary schools are not ranked as good, while that figure is 32 per cent in Southend.
Countywide, just 30 per cent of its primaries are deemed inadequate, while 28 per cent of its secondaries are deemed to be not good enough.
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