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Private school says error caused false league table position
A NORTH-EAST independent school has revealed that its disappointing GCSE league table position is due to an administrative error.
As soon as the Key Stage Four exam results were released last week senior staff at Polam Hall School, in Darlington, realised there had been a mistake.
The official Department for Health school league tables stated that only 41 per cent of the schools Key Four students who had taken GCSEs last summer had obtained five good GCSE passes (from A* to C).
This put the town's fee-paying private school near the bottom of the school league table for Darlington, which includes nine other state secondary schools.
After an internal investigation it was found that the figures published by the DfE were based on incorrect information supplied by the school.
The correct proportion of pupils getting five good passes last is actually 62.5 per cent, moving the school up to mid-table in Darlington.
Headteacher John Moreland told The Northern Echo that the DfE has now accepted that the figures need to be changed.
Mr Moreland said most of the calculations made by DfE officials were based on a figure of 79 pupils when it should have been 48.
He added: "Given that six of our seven international students were not entered for English GCSE, and that 25 per cent of the cohort had learning difficulties of some description, a higher proportion than in recent years, we are very pleased with this outcome. "We have taken the necessary steps to ensure that any administration error like this in recording figures will not happen again at Polam Hall School and this does not reflect on the high quality education provision we offer all of our students."