Hooray for local teachers! The release of national school results lets me recognise the dedication, hard work and results of teachers, and the support staff, at our schools in Bedford and Kempston.
In 2010, local schools were 13 percentage points behind the national average for the proportion of students achieving 5+ A*-C GCSEs including English and Maths.
Now, that gap is down to 8.8%, and 52% of students achieve that standard in Bedford and Kempston schools compared to just 42% in 2010.
Though not always consistent, each step of progress has to be hard won.
St Thomas More School has achieved an outstanding consistency in its improvement; Bedford Academy is transforming itself from the lamentable record of its predecessor school and Mark Rutherford School stands poised for a next leap forward.
More needs to be done to ensure our children get the best possible start in life, but progress is now clearly visible.
Cheers to our teachers for their commitment outside of the classroom too, ensuring children get to school when they should.
I am so mightily impressed by one school where the headteacher herself knocks on front doors when children are absent with no excuse and by those schools, like Goldington Academy, that stayed open during the recent strikes, knowing the pressures that a school closure would bring on working parents.
Cheers for the Bedford Borough Learning Exchange, welcoming all schools – maintained, academies and free schools – in to the family of local schools.
To all of our local teachers who help fuel the futures of our children - thank you.