DUDLEY has the fewest number of good or outstanding primary schools in the West Midlands, an Ofsted report has found.

The education watchdog has unveiled its annual report for 2018/19 which provides a state of the nation picture of the performance of early years, schools, further education and skills, and social care providers in England.

The report shows that 77% of inspected primary schools in the Dudley borough were rated as good or outstanding by the end of August 2019, placing it at the bottom of the rankings in the region.

In comparison, Herefordshire topped the table with 97% of inspected primary schools in the county deemed good or outstanding by Ofsted.

84% of primary schools in the West Midlands received the top two ratings from Ofsted by the end of August 2019, compared with 86% nationally.

The borough also trails regionally for the proportion of pupils achieving the expected standard in reading, writing and maths by the end of Key Stage 2.

59% of Dudley pupils reached the expected standard in the three core skills at the end of Year 6, compared to 63% in the West Midlands and 65% nationally.

Dudley was also placed significantly below the national average for overall P8 score achieved by pupils at end of Key Stage 4, which measures the progress made by pupils over their secondary school career.

The borough, along with Staffordshire, Herefordshire, Sandwell, Telford and Wrekin and Stoke-on-Trent, had an average overall P8 score of -0.2.

Dudley fared better for secondary school performance regionally however, with 74% of secondary schools rated as good or outstanding.

This was a 5% increase in the number of schools in the borough receiving top ratings in August 2018.

Only 62% of schools were given top ratings in bottom-placed Telford and Wrekin, whereas top-placed Shropshire saw 85% achieve good or outstanding ratings.

Lorna Fitzjohn, Ofsted Director for the West Midlands, said although four-fifths of children who grow up in the West Midlands get a good or better education, the results show a "mixed picture".

She said: "In Herefordshire 97% of schools are judged to be good or outstanding, but that proportion falls to 77% in Dudley. And it's clear that the West Midlands has a higher proportion of stuck schools than elsewhere. It’s a mixed picture when it comes to children’s services, with some disappointing outcomes and others, in Birmingham, Dudley and Worcestershire, showing improvement.

"With our new inspection framework, we are making a difference by focusing on the kinds of issues that I know really matter to parents: the substance of what children are learning in school, and behaviour. We started this new approach in September last year - so far, I've had positive feedback. And, this year, my team will be focusing on those schools, colleges skills providers, as well as local authority children’s services, that are not yet good."