Blair's local authority has worst schools

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The Independent Online


The worst education authority in England is Islington, where Tony Blair, the Labour leader, lives, according to the Government's fourth annual league table published today. Mr Blair sends his son out of the borough, where only 17.4 per cent of pupils get five or more GCSE passes at A-C, to a grant-maintained school in Hammersmith and Fulham.

The best authority is Kingston upon Thames, where the figure for good GCSE passes was 55.5 per cent. The top state comprehensive is the Liverpool Blue Coat School, where 98 per cent of pupils got five or more good passes. At the worst three comprehensives no pupil got five A-C passes. The average was 43.5 per cent.

The best state school is King Edward V1 grant-maintained grammar school in Chelmsford, Essex, where the average A-level score was equivalent to just over three A grades. The fee-paying King Edward V1 School for Girls in Birmingham is top overall with an average A-level score of two As and two Bs.

The state school with the biggest improvement is Saint Francis Xavier, in Richmond, North Yorkshire, where the percentage of pupils getting five or more A-C grades at GCSE rose from 29 per cent last year to 61 per cent. The independent school with the biggest improvement was Trinity School, Teignmouth, in Devon, where the proportion of pupils getting five or more A-C grades rose from 31 per cent to 71.

Lord Henley, the Schools Minister, said that in the battle to raise standards, "these tables represent a fourth consecutive victory".

Schools grow apart, page 5

The top comprehensives

(Percentage of pupils getting five or more GCSEs at grades A-C)

1 Liverpool Blue Coat School (98%)

2= Old Swinford Hospital School, Dudley (92%)

The Coopers' Company and Coborn, Havering (92%)

4 Hertfordshire and Essex High, Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire (90%)

5 Watford Grammar School for Girls, Hertfordshire (87%)

6= Watford Grammar School for Boys, Hertfordshire (86%)

Dame Alice Owen's, Potters Bar, Hertfordshire (86%)

8 The King's School, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire (84%)