September 17, 2009

Church schools top Welsh performance charts

by Sara Levy

Children who attend church primary schools in Wales perform “consistently above” the Welsh average in maths, English, and science tests.

The Church of Wales’s first Educational Review, which used data from the independent Fischer Family Trust, found that church schools “perform strongly” across the country, with school pupils outperforming their peers in secular schools.

The review refutes claims by critics that faith schools are selective, citing statistics showing 80% of pupils are granted entry to church schools “without regard to their parents’ faith”.

The Archbishop of Wales, Barry Morgan, welcomed the review and said it demonstrates why there is a strong demand for places at church schools.

“We commissioned the review because we are committed to education and want to continue working, alongside the Welsh Government, to ensure these high standards are maintained and as many pupils as possible are able to benefit,” the Archbishop said.

The Welsh Assembly said it will “carefully consider” the review’s findings.

“We are focused on supporting learners in all settings to ensure that all pupils reach their potential in Wales,” a spokesperson for the Assembly said.

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