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Everest Community Academy head refuses to speak about poor GCSE results
THE principal of a Basingstoke academy has refused to speak to The Gazette about what went wrong for last year’s GCSE students.
In August last year, Julie Rose refused to disclose the results for pupils at Everest Community Academy, saying she had been advised not to by the Academies Enterprise Trust which runs the school. This was because of the national row about the way English papers were marked.
Last week, the league table results revealed that just 34 per cent of pupils at the school, in Oxford Way, Popley, passed at least five GCSEs between A* and C, including English and maths – making it one of the five worst-performing schools in Hampshire.
Everest is one of 195 schools in the country not to reach the Government benchmark of 40 per cent, and is now classed as ‘failing’ by the Department for Education.
In 2010, the school was one of the worst in the country for its performance in the GCSE exams, when just 17 per cent of pupils gained five A* to C grades, including English and maths.
At the time, Ms Rose promised parents that converting to an academy would raise standards. The following year results rose to 39 per cent, but they have now gone backwards again.
When The Gazette tried to contact Ms Rose this week, she declined to comment and we were referred to the Academies Enterprise Trust.
Mike Barnett, from the Academies Enterprise Trust, claimed the low 2012 GCSE overall result was because of the English marking controversy.
He added: “Everest’s published GCSE results do not do justice to their best-ever marks in mathematics and science. Like many other schools, students who sat English in the summer were not given scores which truly reflected their ability.
“We are committed to making Everest a high-achieving academy and will continue to give them our maximum support to make this a reality at the earliest possible opportunity.”