Two Plymouth primary schools celebrated for achievements by schools minister
TWO city primary schools have been acknowledged by the schools minister for their performance.
MP David Laws wrote to Devonport-based schools Morice Town Primary School and Marlborough Primary School based on their performance in new 'similar schools tables' - which rank schools with near identical intakes of children.
In the letter Schools Minister David Laws said: "It gives me great pleasure to congratulate you on your excellent performance in the new similar schools measure in the 2012 School Performance Tables.
"You are one of the 105 top performing primary schools in England on this measure.
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"These tables compare schools with those with near identical intakes, as judged by their key stage 1 attainment. Your school stood out in two ways.
"First, you were ranked number one in your table. Second, over 20 per cent more of your pupils achieved a level 4 or above in English and maths than is typical of a school with your intake. This is a fantastic achievement that you should be very proud of.
"I congratulate your staff, governors and pupils for their hard work and thank you for your leadership."
Nick Harris, a Year 6 teacher at Morice Town Primary School, said: "It's a huge achievement that's down to a massive team effort. We've got an ethos of mutual respect, co-operation and teamwork and that is at the heart of what we do.
"This is a nurturing and caring school with an inspiration of working towards something bigger and that has shone through in the results.
"We're really proud of what we've achieved and to have been recognised by the government. A massive well done to the staff and most importantly the students."
Altogether Mr Laws contacted 105 primary schools and 56 secondary schools in England who had performed the best.
He said: "The schools I have written to show fantastic results can be achieved even with a challenging intake of pupils.
"I have asked them to work closely with other head teachers so every child has the chance to go to a school as good as theirs."
The similar schools measure, now published as part of the regular performance tables, sees state-maintained schools grouped with others whose pupils have similar prior academic achievement.
They are then ranked against similar schools on the basis of the actual results achieved – in 11-year-olds' tests for primary schools, or in GCSEs for secondary schools.
The primary schools who received a letter from the Minister were top of their "most similar" table and had an additional 20 per cent of their pupils achieving at least the expected level in both English and maths when compared to a typical school with their intake.