Academy Statement Regarding Performance Tables Published in January and October 2015
The Government’s changes to the rules about how schools’ 2014 GCSE results are represented in performance tables have been widely discussed in the media since the summer of 2014. One major change was that only a student’s first entry in a GCSE examination would count towards their school’s performance table data. This means that the new performance tables can give a very different picture of a school from the overall examination record of its students because many students, including some at DACA sat exams early, but subsequently achieved higher grades when re-sitting them for a second time.
The new 2015 Government performance tables mean that it is impossible to compare DACA’s 2014 and 2015 exam results with previous years. Since August 2014, we have published our GCSE exam results as:
- 61% achieving 5+ A*-C grades, including English and mathematics.
- 80% of students making at least the expected levels of progress in mathematics
- 74% of students making at least the expected levels of progress in English
We are publishing our 2015 results as:
- 58% achieving 5+ A*-C grades, including English and mathematics.
- 68% of students making at least the expected levels of progress in mathematics
- 73% of students making at least the expected levels of progress in English
These are a true reflection of our students’ achievements, taking into consideration the result from their best entries and most importantly, it is these final grades that matter to our students and to colleges, universities and future employers. The revised criteria for DfE performance tables don’t reflect the actual set of results students left school with in the last two years.
We agree with School Reform Minister, Nick Gibb’s words on how ‘young people are not statistics’ but are ‘individuals whose life chances depend on their results’. We commend our students who work extremely hard on their exams, particularly when they have had to cope with the changes to the qualifications system. We also praise DACA’s teachers and support staff for their continuous support and dedication to ensuring their students reach their full potential, particularly when they had regulatory changes imposed on the system at short notice and within two to three year programmes of study and assessment.
We have ambitious plans for the future and are confident we will continue to see accelerated progress and a significant increase in results in the coming years, with reduced coursework and without the option to enable students to enter examinations early.
It is worthy of note, that even in the light of removal of previously ‘equivalent’ qualifications, removal of coursework, limitations on early entry, raising of grade boundaries and ‘tougher’ standards, the academy has sustained a very good level of GCSE outcomes and the differential between ‘first’ and ‘best’ entry has narrowed from 28% in 2014 to just 1% in 2015.