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by Meyrem Hussein
Friday, November 30, 2012
Islington has officially been ranked among the best in the country for the quality of its schools – but the picture is not as rosy in Hackney.
New figures released by Ofsted show that 89 per cent of Islington pupils attend a good or outstanding-rated primary school, making Islington sixth best out of 150 local authorities in England, and 82 per cent attend a good or outstanding secondary school – 31st best in the country.
Results were worse in Hackney, where Ofsted reported that only 56 per cent of pupils attend good or outstanding primary schools – placing it 138th in England – and 64 per cent attend good or outstanding secondary schools, placing it 105th in the country.
Historically, Islington was seen as poor for education. But Cllr Richard Watts, Islington Council’s executive member for children and families, believes Islington’s schools are transformed from where they were 10 years ago.
Cllr Watts said: “With so many of our schools ranked as good or outstanding, along with improving Key Stage 2, GCSE and A-level results, parents can be confident that their children have the opportunities they need to succeed.
“But there is no complacency and improvements can always be made. We’ll continue to work hard with teachers, governors and school staff to do this, because every child has the right to go to a school where they will get a good education.”
The new figures come just months after Islington posted its best-ever GCSE results, with 54 per cent of Year 11 students getting the government’s benchmark of five A* to C grades including English and maths – a rise of five percentage points on the previous year.
However, Tricia Okoruwa, head of Hackney Learning Trust, which is responsible for education in Hackney, said the Ofsted ratings were misleading as they only reflect “one set of criteria by which schools are measured” and were only based on a “single snapshot in time”.
Ms Okoruwa said: “There are only 12 secondary schools in Hackney, of which currently four are outstanding, four are good and four are satisfactory, only one of which has been graded satisfactory twice.
“When looking at the figures for pupil outcomes, Hackney schools are currently above the national average with regards to the number of pupils achieving five or more GCSEs at grades A* to C including English and maths and are at the national average for E-Bacc results.
“It is therefore important to have a health warning when looking at isolated pieces of information.”
The results were released in Ofsted’s annual report for 2011-12, in which Ofsted ranked schools based on their most recent inspection as of August 31, 2012.