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School is warned over 'disappointing' GCSE results
7:00pm Thursday 6th September 2012 in News
BICESTER Community College could face “external intervention” if results do not improve.
That’s the warning from Oxfordshire county councillor Michael Waine , a former headteacher who is also an associate governor of the school.
While the proportion of pupils this year achieving five A* to Cs including English and maths rose to 48 per cent, a rise of one percentage point, and all children achieved at least one GCSE pass, Mr Waine said more needed to be done.
He said: “The Bicester Community College results are extremely disappointing.”
He said a marked improvement in the number of pupils gaining a C or above in maths saw 65 per cent getting a good pass, compared to 59 per cent last year – but added the achievement was “overshadowed” by performance in English, with only 55.3 per cent achieving a good pass compared to 61 per cent in 2011.
Mr Waine said: “The school has a mountain to climb in terms of raising achievement on a sustained basis, and time is very short before external intervention could come into play.
“I believe that the new leadership of the school has the capacity to achieve this, given the all-round commitment from students, parents and staff.”
He said external intervention would be likely to mean forced academy status.
Jason Clarke took up post as new headteacher in April 2010.
At the town’s other secondary school, The Cooper School, pupils and staff were celebrating their best ever results, with 66 per cent of students achieving five or more A* to Cs including English and maths, which Mr Waine described as “outstanding”.
He said: “Bicester needs and deserves two good secondary schools.”
But he added: “Both schools had notable individual successes and these students, and their parents, are to be congratulated.”
Bicester Community College was still above the Government’s new, higher, floor target of at least 40 per cent of pupils achieving five A* to Cs including English and maths, and 97 per cent of pupils achieved at least five A* to Gs, up one percentage point from summer 2011.
Not all Oxfordshire schools supplied their full results this year due to question marks over changes to grade boundaries for some English language papers.
But of the 40 that did, only five recorded a lower proportion of pupils achieving the benchmark measure of five A* to Cs including English and maths.
At the other end of the scale, five pupils at Bicester Community College gained 10 or more grades at A* or A.
Bicester Community College headteacher Mr Clarke was yesterday unavailable for comment.