Two Birmingham schools have been praised as being “world class” by Education Secretary Michael Gove.
Arthur Terry School in Four Oaks and Perry Beeches the Academy in Great Barr were singled out for special mention in both a keynote speech and a Parliamentary debate by the cabinet minister.
Mr Gove said the secondary schools were among the education elite in the UK.
His comments come just two months after the Tory minister told the Birmingham Mail some city schools were “not good enough” and that “determined action” was needed to improve education in the city.
In a Commons debate on education reform, Mr Gove said: “Birmingham is the youngest city in Britain and its multicultural traditions are part of its strength, but it is important to recognise in Birmingham that, although there are some excellent schools, such as Perry Beeches and Arthur Terry, there are some under-performing schools.”
Perry Beeches was threatened with closure just five years ago, but has since gone on to be named “most improved” school in the country.
Seventy three per cent of students at the school achieved five or more GCSEs at grades A*-C including maths and English last year.
Arthur Terry recorded a 70 per cent pass rate at A*-C including maths and English.
Mr Gove added in a speech at the Spectator Conference: “England boasts some of the very best educational institutions in the world... Oxford, Cambridge, Imperial and UCL are world class, as are the academies of the Harris and Ark chains, faith schools like Cardinal Vaughan and Hasmonean and comprehensives like Perry Beeches and Arthur Terry in Birmingham.”
Arthur Terry head teacher Neil Warner said: “We are extremely pleased that Arthur Terry and Stockland Green have been nationally recognised for their achievements.
“This truly is a testament to the spirit of collaborative working which we hold fast, in developing excellent partnerships with schools, parents and governors.”