National Challenge for Schools

Children, Schools and Families written question – answered on 25th January 2010.

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Photo of Phil Wilson Phil Wilson Labour, Sedgefield

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what progress has been made in the national challenge for schools; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Vernon Coaker Vernon Coaker Minister of State (Department for Children, Schools and Families) (Schools and Learners)

In 1997, approximately 1,600 schools did not reach the National Challenge benchmark of 30 per cent. of pupils achieving five good GCSEs including English and maths, but this number has fallen progressively to 640 in 2007 and 439 in 2008.

GCSE results in 2009 improved in National Challenge schools across the country. The number of schools below the benchmark has fallen further to just 247 this year.

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