RESPECTED headteacher Dr Terry Fish has claimed that the GCSE league tables are “misleading” and “riddled with problems”.

The head of Twynham school has also voiced his fears that the preoccupation with results means that many students are abandoning vocational courses.

He said: “I think the league tables are driving school behaviour and that is really not very helpful.

“We need to be encouraging our young people to take up those types of subject as they will really benefit the country.”

Secondary school league tables 2014: see how schools across Dorset and Hampshire compare

A record number of students gained top grades at Twynham with 15 pupils gaining 12 A* and A grades and 20 getting at least 10 A* or A grades.

Overall the school, in Christchurch, had 65 per cent of students meeting at least the benchmark standard.

Dr Fish said: “We were very happy with the results, but of course we always want to do better.”

Bournemouth council said English results for the borough’s schools were up eight per cent from last year, while maths results were up five per cent, both above the national average.

Councillor Nicola Greene, deputy leader and portfolio holder for education, said: “For the past eight years we have seen a rise in the percentage of students getting five good GCSEs including English and Maths.

“Bournemouth schools have achieved a two per cent increase on 2012 results and are now at their highest level.”

Borough of Poole portfolio holder for children and young people, Cllr Janet Walton said she was pleased the results for Poole were again “above the national average”.

“For the third year running our young people in Poole have succeeded in improving on the previous year’s results,” she said.

Mark Loveys, Dorset County Council's head of learning and school improvement, said: “We are very pleased with the progress that Dorset secondary schools appear to have made since last year. “It seems that there have been good overall improvements for pupils in 2013, especially those pupils from more disadvantaged backgrounds.”