Cumbrian schools' joy as results success

STAFF at many Cumbrian primary schools celebrated another successful year with the release of Key Stage Two test results.

Across the county, the percentage of Year Six chil-dren achieving at least level four in both English and maths was 82 – three per cent higher than the national figure and six per cent above last year.

Among the top performing schools were Low Furness CE in Ulverston, Milnthorpe’s Heversham St Peter’s and Arnside National School, where all children attained the benchmark.

Arnside head teacher Alan Cook said he was ‘extremely pleased’ and added: “It is a whole school effort which also reflects the support of the community in general.

“While it does not always show the whole picture of what schools offer in terms of opportunities for children, it is certainly a reflection of the hard work and commitment shown by staff and children.”

There were also some stark improvements, with Burton Morewood School at Burton-in-Kendal, seeing a leap from 62 to 92 per cent in success and Grange-over-Sands increasing from 53 to 85 per cent.

Staff at Kendal’s Dean Gibson Catholic School were also delighted to hear all pupils had reached the target level four – a 39 per cent rise from last year.

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Norah Mercer, head teacher, said: “We have such hard working and dedicated children and I would like to take this opportunity to thank them for all their hard work.

“I would also like to thank parents for their support and teachers for their commitment to ensuring all children reach their full potential.”

Not all were thrilled with the announcement though, including the head teacher at Flookburgh CE School, Chris Brooksbank, where figures fell from 62 to 46 per cent.

“It’s obviously disappointing and we are looking at addressing it now,” said Mr Brooksbank.

“But the small cohorts can make a big difference to the reliability of the statistics.

“We had one child on holiday and another missing level four by only one mark, which affected the results.”

Kendal’s Stramongate School also saw a drop from 90 to 83 per cent, but head teacher Mike Poole remained positive.

“Results fluctuate naturally over time, with a greater or lesser proportion of a particular year group requiring additional support,” he said.

“However, in spite of the high proportion of children requiring extra help, the rate of progress achieved by individuals was impressive, with many surpassing our expectations.”

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