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Years 12 and 14 examination performance at post-primary schools in the north of Ireland 2011-12 (revised)

A statistical press release presenting an analysis of examination performance for pupils in Years 12 and 14 at post-primary schools in the north of Ireland for 2011/12 has been published today.
Thursday, 21 March 2013

The data are taken from the Summary of Annual Examination Results process which collates and validates data with schools. A provisional release of this data issued in November 2012 and these revised statistics include the results of those pupils who availed of an early resit opportunity in GCSE English and English Language examinations.

Year 12 Pupils (End of Key Stage 4)

  • There were 21,827 pupils in Year 12 eligible for GCSE (or equivalent) examination reporting - 9,193 in grammar schools and 12,634 in non-grammar schools. This continues the recent trend of decline in the Year 12 exam cohort and represents a decrease of 2,927 pupils since 2005/06, when there were 24,754 Year 12 pupils eligible for examinations.

Overall Year 12 Performance

  • 60.1% of Year 12 pupils achieved five or more GCSEs (including equivalents) at grades A*-C including GCSE English and GCSE maths, the figure remains the same as in 2010/11 (60.1%).
  • 77.8% of Year 12 pupils achieved five or more GCSEs (including equivalents) at grades A*-C, an increase of 2.5 percentage points from 75.3% in 2010/11.
  • Females generally perform better than their male counterparts, 82.4% of female pupils in Year 12 achieved five or more GCSEs (including equivalents) at grades A*-C compared to 73.4% of males, a gap of 9.0 percentage points.

Year 14 Pupils

  • The Year 14 performance figures are based on the number of pupils at the end of a level 3 (A level or equivalent) course of study.
  • There were 12,954 pupils in Year 14 entered for A level (or equivalent) examinations. This represents an increase of 205 since 2010/11, when there were 12,749 pupils in Year 14 entered for A level (or equivalent) examinations. This reflects an increase in the proportion of pupils staying on in school.

Year 14 Performance

  • 98.1% of Year 14 pupils achieved two or more A levels (including equivalents) at grades A*-E, an increase of 0.4 percentage points from the 97.7% achieved in 2010/11.
  • 64.8% of Year 14 pupils achieved three or more A levels (including equivalents) at grades A*-C. This is an increase of 0.3 percentage points since 2010/11.

Notes to editors:

National Statistics

1. The United Kingdom Statistics Authority has designated these statistics as National Statistics, in accordance with the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 and signifying compliance with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

Designation can be broadly interpreted to mean that the statistics:

  • meet identified user needs;
  • are well explained and readily accessible;
  • are produced according to sound methods, and
  • are managed impartially and objectively in the public interest.

Once statistics have been designated as National Statistics it is a statutory requirement that the Code of Practice shall continue to be observed.

2. You can also find National Statistics on the UK National Statistics website.

School performance

3. The data collected are used extensively by schools to monitor and evaluate their academic performance to inform all aspects of their school improvement planning and to satisfy their data requirements in areas such as their prospectus and other public publications which contain performance information. The press, the public and various public bodies also access the data regularly to keep their records of school attainment current and to compare with previous years.

Further enquiries

Requests for further information should be addressed to:-

Danielle McNeill
Statistics and Research Branch
Department of Education
Rathgael House
Balloo Road
Co Down
BT19 7PR

Telephone: (028) 9127 9259

Fax: (028) 9127 9594


Special analyses of data collected through the Summary of Annual Examination Results can be undertaken on request.

The full Statistical Press Release can be accessed on the DENI Website.

Feedback on this publication can be provided directly to Danielle McNeill (contact details above) or via the feedback questionnaire on our website.

4. Media enquiries to the Department of Education’s Communications Team on Tel: 02891279207. Out of office hours contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699715440 and your call will be returned.