This is my first ever blog and it is lovely to be able to focus on something so positive and also a chance for me to thank you for everything you are doing to support the school.
We along with all other secondary schools were given our provisional performance data with regard to this summer’s GCSE results from the Department for Education (DFE) in the last few days. Since then we have been reviewing the data, processing some changes and trying to understand our strengths and areas for improvement. Whilst we do not yet have the information about other schools performance in the summer’s GCSEs to compare to this year, we are really pleased with how well our students achieved in the exams this summer.
The key new criteria for assessing progress within a school is called progress 8, this is a measure of how well every student in the year group does across eight subjects specified by the government. Zero represents national average for progress for all schools, last year for non-selective schools like ours in highly selective areas, the average progress 8 was -0.09, at Pensby it was -0.01.
The DFE have a provisional figure for 2017 for this school of +0.15, but they have missed some grades from our students in their provisional figures and so the current calculation is +0.18. On last year’s national figures that would have this school approaching the top third of all schools in the country for progress.
We have come a very long way in three years and just to give this some context within the local authority our girls progress 8 in 2016 was +0.27 which is better than the national figure for girls, Weatherhead as an all-girls school being +0.19 and Prenton being +0.09. This year (2017) girls at Pensby have a progress 8 score of +0.34, an improvement again on last year.
Boys’ scores nationally are lower than girls scores, nationally boys’ progress 8 was -0.12 in 2016, our progress 8 for boys this year is -0.02, so better than national. Which given that boys progress was inadequate two years ago, is a credit to the boys and the invaluable support of parents.
We do not know what progress 8 looks like for other schools at this time, but in the last three years as a community, parents, teachers and students: we have moved boys progress from being inadequate three years ago to being better than their peers nationally this year; improved girls progress still further in 2017 after out-performing the non-selective girls schools in 2016 within the local authority; merged the Boys and Girls schools into one new school and moved the attainment of both the boys and girls to better than the national average with progress rates higher than nearly two-thirds of all schools in England.
We could not have done this without your support as parents and more importantly the effort and commitment of teachers and students.