EDUCATION chiefs across the city are celebrating after this year’s GCSE results – bringing Portsmouth out of the bottom five worst authorities in the country.
Figures released by the Department for Education show that the percentage of pupils receiving the ‘gold standard’, which is five or more A*-C grades including English and maths, has risen to 52 per cent from 45.5 per cent.
And the ‘gold standard’ result for boys, who traditionally perform less well than girls in exams in the city, has seen them climb to 115th from 149th position.
Overall this is a leap which raises the city’s education authority from 148th best in the country to 133rd out of 151 local authorities.
And it comes even though many schools were affected by the controversy over the GCSE English grade boundaries, where results were marked down in some cases.
Steve Labedz, headteacher of Admiral Lord Nelson School, said: ‘We were at the bottom in terms of good standard performance. To be that low against the national drop was pretty depressing.
‘Our ambition is to get into the top half of the table at least. This is a step forward.’
Mr Labedz added: ‘What I am best pleased with is the boys results.
‘It’s a big improvement for boys which is encouraging.
‘It’s a step in the right direction.
‘We are now nearer where we need to be.
‘But there is a lot more work required. The thing that’s made the big difference is the focus in schools in the city on maths.
‘Our maths results across the city have shot up well above the national average. There’s a real ambition in all Portsmouth schools to give the kids the absolute best deal we can and give them the best chances in life.’
The result comes as the city council recently launched a project to raise the standards of education across the city.
And The News has been working with schools as part of our Read All About It literacy campaign.
Di Mitchell, Portsmouth City Council’s head of education said: ‘Education in Portsmouth is on the up as the city’s pupils have bucked the national trend with the best-ever “gold standard” GCSE results.
‘Over the next three years we have a plan to boost education through raising the standard of learning.
‘We’re all proud of what schools have achieved so far and this is encouraging news for the future.’