MORE Dudley children than ever before have achieved five or more GCSE passes it has been revealed.

According to national performance tables 61 per cent of pupils across the country achieved five or more A* - C grades compared to 56.9 per cent last year.

Schools in Dudley also out performed neighbouring boroughs with 46.9 per cent compared to the 2007 result of 43.6 per cent.

Bishop Milner Catholic School features in the top five highest performing schools in Dudley with 68 per cent of its pupils achieving grades A* - C including English and maths.

Other schools in the top band include Old Swinford Hospital, The Kingswinford School, Summerhill and Halesowen’s Windsor High There were also significant improvements at a number of schools compared to last year’s results, with Dormston notching up 10 per cent more than its 2007 results of 43 per cent and High Arcal scoring 54 per cent from its earlier 45 per cent.

Councillor Liz Walker, cabinet member for children’s services, said: “I am delighted more children than ever before have achieved five or more GCSE grades A* - C. “ She added: “This is the fifth year results have increased and standards have improved at borough schools. We are working hard, in partnership with the Black Country Challenge to ensure that all schools continue to improve.”