27/08/2009

Girls Beat Boys In GCSEs

While the highest grades were achieved by three quarters of NI candidates in the GCSE results just published - girls continue beating boys.

A*, A, B and C awards went to 75.1% of all candidates locally with 9.1% being awarded the top A* grade.

However, it was also revealed that girls continued to outperform boys at the top grade A* and at grades A* - C.

Almost 11% of girls received a grade A* compared to 7.2% of boys and 77.8% of girls achieved grades A*- C compared to 72.3% for boys.

Commenting on the results, the NI Education Minister Caitríona Ruane said: "These are excellent results and they show the determination of our young people to work to the best of their ability. Congratulations to all the students receiving results today.

"Teachers and parents have inspired and motivated our young people to work hard to achieve these results and they should also be congratulated for their hard work and dedication," she said.
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However, while these are excellent results, she said there are still too many young people leaving education without the necessary five GCSEs.

"I have been implementing progressive reforms to improve the education system. We need an education system that will provide the skills and abilities so our young people will thrive and prosper," she commented.

Meanwhile, the Stormont Employment and Learning Minister, Sir Reg Empey, said: "I would like to congratulate everyone who has achieved or exceeded their desired results and I wish you well in your chosen pathways."

Noting that some results may not have been that 'needed' he said: "It is important to take stock and consider all the options.

"Do not make any hasty or rushed decisions," he advised.

"There are a number of options open and there is support available to help in the decision making process.

"These could include sixth form at your current or new school, enrolling on a course at your local further education college, following an apprenticeship or training program or gaining employment."

See: 'A' Grades Dominate GCSEs

(BMcC/GK)

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