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Lauriston Girls leads the state in VCE results

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Jewel Topsfield and Craig Butt

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LAURISTON Girls' School, a non-academically selective independent school in Armadale, has topped the state in this year's VCE results, in its strongest performance in 10 years.

The Age has ranked schools based on the percentage of study scores of 40 and over, which is an indication of the proportion of high achievers in each school.

''It's unbelievable — we've just been glowing for three days,'' principal Susan Just said.

Lauriston Girls' was also one of 11 schools to get a median study score of 37, with only the Mac.Robertson Girls' High School and Yeshivah College obtaining a higher median of 38.

The median study score, which represents a typical level of achievement, is the middle score when all subject scores obtained by a school are ranked from highest to lowest.

''I think that's what we really appreciate when analysing the results — it's not just a few of the girls pulling us up, we have strength right through,'' Ms Just said.

The Mac.Robertson Girls' High, a select-entry state school, is ranked second, a fitting tribute to principal Jane Garvey, who retires on Friday.

Jewish schools performed exceptionally well, with Bialik College, Yeshivah College, Mount Scopus Memorial College and Leibler Yavneh College all in the top 10.

''I think Jewish schools do well because education is extremely highly valued and prized by the community,'' said the head of senior school at Bialik College, Gary Velleman.

''Historically, it was the one thing you could always take with you when you left a country.

''Our parents invest hugely in education, believe strongly in its power to transform, and support schools in working on new programs and initiatives to make sure kids are getting access to the very best available.''

The top Catholic schools were Sacre Coeur and St Kevin's College Toorak, which were ranked 16, while the top regional school was Ballarat Clarendon College, which came in at number 11.

The top state school that was neither select-entry nor specialist was Balwyn High, which was ranked 44.

Lauriston Girls' VCE student Tabatha Turner, who received an Australian Tertiary Admission Rank of 99.5, said the whole year level had been ''pretty switched on''.

''Everyone got pretty into it and tried really hard — our year level was pretty passionate about the whole school thing,'' she said.

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