Monday, 26 November 2012 15:38

New research shows Catholic schools are more ethnically diverse and higher performing than national averages

Today the Catholic Education Service launched its Digest of 2012 Census Data for Schools and Colleges. The data shows the prominent role of Catholic education in England and Wales with 2257 Catholic schools and colleges educating 838,756 pupils and employing 52,436 Teachers and 39,102 support staff.

The finding build upon previous year’s census which asks all Catholic schools and colleges in England and Wales to provide data on the number, Catholicity and social background of their pupils and teachers.

The data shows a number of positives:

•20 % of pupils at Catholic secondary schools live in the most deprived areas (17% nationally).

•Catholic schools are more ethnically diverse than national averages (33.5% of Catholic primary school pupils are from ethnic minority backgrounds compared with 27.6% nationally.)

•The Catholicity of both the pupil and teacher population has risen slightly from previous years with 71% of pupils and 55.6% of teachers at Catholic schools stated as Catholic.

Additional research into school performance continues to show that Catholic schools and colleges are outperforming national averages. 

•74.7% of Catholic primary schools have Ofsted grades of good or outstanding (64% nationally)

•At age 11, Catholic schools outperform national average English and Maths SATs scores by 6%

•At GCSE, Catholic schools outperform the national average by 4.9%

Bishop Malcolm McMahon OP, Chairman of the Catholic Education Service said “We are very pleased to welcome these figures which show the enormous and important contribution that Catholic education makes to the common good of our society. The strength of our Catholic sector is based upon the respect for the individual, as a Child of God. Our Catholic schools continue to be a reflection of the diverse communities which we serve.”


Further data on Catholic education can be found in CES’s Digest of 2012 Census Data for Schools and Colleges available at (The Census return rate from Catholic schools and colleges was 98%).  

Performance statics for Catholic Education can be found in the Key Facts 2012 available at

A podcast explaining the Census can be found at
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