BOTH of Dolgellau’s schools have retained the worst ‘red’ branding after the latest Welsh Government’s ranking announcement.

Ysgol y Gader and Ysgol Gynradd Dolgellau both remain in the bottom tier of the rankings which were introduced last year to help improve schools performances.

Every school in the country has had its performance revealed in colour-coded tables, ranging from green (highly effective schools) to red (in need of greatest improvement).

A ‘red’ rating highlights that the schools are “experiencing a decline in key aspects of their performance” and that they will require “intensive support”.

Both schools have struggled in recent years due to absences of key staff but now have acting headteachers to help steady the ship.

Dewi Jones, acting head at Ysgol y Gader, was not phased by the low grading.

“People can get confused by the ‘red’ rating, it is simply a support category from the advisory board,” he said. “All it means is that we’re entitled to more support, something that we greatly appreciate as a school.

“There is no direct correlation between the banding and prospective results for the school. In fact, we’re forecasting very good results for this year.

“The rating is there to help us push on with our agenda of raising standards to put us in good stead for the switchover to the new all-through school which opens next year.”

In response to the new Welsh Government rankings, a Gwynedd Council spokesperson said: “As this year’s primary, GCSE and A-level results show, Gwynedd’s schools provide an excellent education for our young people.

“Those results show that our pupils are performing very well in key areas.

“The National School Categorisation data is part of a Welsh Government initiative to group schools according to a range of factors with the aim being to establish priorities for differentiated support.

“These categories do not necessarily provide a fair picture of each individual school’s performance and, as the government has emphasised, the data should not be used as the basis for creating divisive school league tables.

“Gwynedd Council’s education dep­artment, in conjunction with regional partners, will continue to work closely with the county’s schools to ensure that they provide the best possible edu­cation for our young people.”