Isolated schools see worse results at GCSE

Disadvantaged pupils at isolated schools do worse at GCSE than teenagers in more populated areas.

New research suggests that the proportion of disadvantaged students achieving five or more A* to C grades at GCSE (including English and maths) declines by just over one percentage point for every additional kilometre of isolation.

The study, entitled Isolated Schools: Out on a limb and conducted by the Future Leaders Trust, looked at the relationship between school performance and distance to the next nearest school.

Researchers calculated the distance between all state-maintained schools, then analysed whether relative geographical isolation can be linked to low attainment of students receiving free school meals (FSM).

They found that over the last three years schools less than one kilometre apart saw 49 per cent of their FSM students achieve five or more A* to C grades at GCSE (including English and maths).

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