HEADTEACHERS have hit out at Government changes that they say have made this year’s league tables meaningless.

Oxfordshire schools performed better than the national average again this year but many saw their percentage of top grades drop in yesterday’s league tables.

On GCSE results day in August many schools published their 'best' results including re-sits, but yesterday's league table did not take re-taken exams into account.

Just 28 per cent of pupils at The Oxford Academy in Littlemore achieved at least five GCSEs at grades A* to C including English and Maths.

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Last year the figure was 42 per cent. But headteacher Niall McWilliams said pupils had performed just as well as before and their performance was not reflected in the tables.

He said: “I am really tired of politicians making decisions that have an adverse effect on pupils. It does not fuss me if they have to do two entries to get a good grade.

“Yet another Government decision decided to count less vocational qualifications and that hurt us.

"My philosophy is that we will always do the right thing for our students so I am not overly fussed about where we are in a league table as long as we have given our students the best chance in life.”

Wallingford School was ranked sixth in the county with 73 per cent of students achieving top grades. But last year the school achieved 76 per cent and including re-sits and international GCSEs its results figure in August was 80 per cent.

Headteacher Wyll Willis said: “I am disappointed in the way our results have been reflected. The league tables have never been more meaningless.

“These are league tables that are composed of some school’s full-time scores and some school’s half-time scores. Anyone with any sense wants to see what children leave school with. The positions in the league table do not have a bearing on how the schools have done so it is a pretty pointless exercise.”

King Alfred’s School in Wantage saw 66 per cent of children achieve five GCSES at A* to C, down from 73 per cent in 2014. Headteacher Simon Spiers said: “We think we have done very, very well but we think the league tables will send confusing messages to parents and communities about local schools. I would say anybody looking at league tables should take them with a large pinch of salt.”

But some schools said they had benefited. At Burford School, 69 per cent of pupils got top grades – up from 64 per cent last year. Headteacher Kathy Haig said: “I am probably one of the few heads who thinks the new league tables are a fair representation of where our kids are. Our kids do nine or 10 GCSEs, unlike other schools who do things like a BTEC which is the equivalent to three or four GCSEs. For us it seems a lot fairer, or at least it is equally unfair on everybody.”

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