Private schools drop down league tables after GCSE shake-up

Many of the country's top private schools have found themselves at the bottom of the league tables following a shake up of the GCSE system.

It comes after the government announced International GCSEs (IGCSEs) - used by many private schools as they are deemed more rigorous - would no longer be counted in the rankings.

Figures out today reveal the number of secondary schools considered to be under-performing has also doubled in the wake of the overhaul of the exams system.

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  1. Romilly Weeks

'Comparing school league tables should be easier in future'

The number of schools classed as underperforming has doubled. Credit: PA

This is the first year that reflects all the changes the government has introduced, so it was clearly always going to be a difficult one.

I think we can safely say there is just no point in trying to compare these latest tables to any previous ones because the goal posts have shifted so much.

Looking ahead, it should become slightly easier, provided this new, more rigourous system continues to be applied.

These changes were introduced because the feeling was that GCSEs had become too easy and that employers didn't value them anymore.

But schools certainly think there has been too much change and that it has been brought in too quickly.

Qualifications, like the international GCSEs, were being promoted by the government at one point - the next moment they're not even included in the league tables.

This leaves a difficult situation for schools and a pretty confusing situation for parents.

School league tables are 'flawed and meaningless'

School league tables, unveiled by the government today, have been branded "flawed and meaningless" by the National Association of Headteachers.

Kathy James, Director of Education at the NAHT said: "The data has changed year-on-year, the methodology has changed year-on-year, so we don't have comparable data."

ITV's Political Correspondent Romilly Weeks reports:

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School league tables 'too confusing' for parents

Shadow education secretary Tristram Hunt. Credit: PA

School league tables are now "too confusing" for parents looking to see where best to send their children.

Tristram Hunt, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary, said the system brought in by David Cameron was "taking the country backwards and threatening standards."

He added: "Parents deserve to know exactly how their child’s school is performing, but under this Tory-led Government all they’ve got is confusion surrounding school results year on year."

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