Three schools in the district have been congratulated for being recognised in the top 100 performing non-selective schools in the country for their performance in GCSE exams last summer.

Students at Sandringham School in St Albans, St Albans Girls’ School and St. George's School in Harpenden have received a personal letter from the Minister for Schools David Laws MP, to mark their achievements.

The schools were recognised for their outstanding results in their GCSEs and were ranked based on the five best GSCEs including English and mathematics.

In his letter to the school, Rt Hon Laws said: "It is clear that your school has equipped its pupils to be successful hereafter, both in terms of their readiness for further study, and in terms of their readiness to enter the world of work in due course.

"I would like to congratulate your staff, governors and pupils for their hard work and success, and thank you for your leadership in continuing the drive towards high standards of educational achievement."

Alan Gray, headteacher at Sandringham School said the news indicated how strong education was in the district.

He said: "For our local area to have three schools in the 100 top performing schools in the country is wonderful news and indicates how strong state education is in our area. The school performance tables 2012 give a large amount of information on results and demonstrate that all schools in St Albans and Harpenden have achieved highly and provided wonderful opportunities for young people to be successful."

Acting Headteacher at St George’s school, Paddy Storrie said he was delighted to see the hard work of the 2012 GCSE cohort recognised in this way".

He said: The DfE's analysis shows that St George's was in the top centile nationally for our GCSE English results, and the 2nd centile for our GCSE Maths results. We are delighted at the life opportunities that open up to our individual students from attaining these standards, whether they got all A*s or struggled but still achieved well.

"St George's owes a great debt of thanks to our staff and parents, and also the local primary schools who provide us with attentive and hard working students."

Margaret Chapman, headteacher for St Albans Girls' School, said she was "absolutely delighted."

She said: "We are absolutely delighted and it is a fantastic to know our students are equipped to be successful now and in their future careers. It is a fantastic achievement.

"We are extremely grateful to our school community, teachers and parents and to receive a letter in relation to our school performance tables shows how incredibly hard working and dedicated our students are.