Exam results for school leavers in the Dungannon and South Tyrone Borough Council area have improved markedly over the last five years
Over 65% of school leavers resident in the borough in 2011/12 achieved five GCSEs at A*-C, or equivalent qualifications, including GCSEs in English and maths.
This proportion represents an increase of 5.7 percentage points since 2007/08 and is well above the north of Ireland average of 62%.
Education Minister, John O’Dowd, welcomed the statistics as proof that educational reforms are having a positive impact.
The Minister said: “I very much welcome, therefore, these latest figures from the school leavers’ survey for last year which show that pupils from the Dungannon and South Tyrone area are continuing to perform better, year on year.
“The reforms initiated by my predecessor, following the return of devolution in 2007, are helping deliver real, measurable improvements and I fully intend to continue on the same course.
“I am also encouraged to see an improvement in achievement by pupils with free school meal entitlement (FSME) across the north. Since 2007/08, there has been an increase of 6.4 percentage points in the proportion of these pupils achieving the same important standard of five good GCSEs or equivalents including GCSE English and maths.
The Minister continued: “While the figures show higher than average performance by pupils from Dungannon and South Tyrone, there are still too many young people leaving school without reaching the benchmark of five good GCSEs or equivalents including GCSE English and maths.
Concluding, the Minister said: “This upward trend in attainment is testament to the hard work of the young people from the Dungannon and South Tyrone District who have worked so hard towards their exams.”