Monday, 25 September 2017

Another good year for the students

STUDENTS in Henley, South Oxfordshire and Berkshire are celebrating after achieving top grades in their A-levels.

STUDENTS in Henley, South Oxfordshire and Berkshire are celebrating after achieving top grades in their A-levels.

Pass rates at most schools and colleges were as good as or better than in previous years.

The Henley College achieved a pass rate of 99 per cent, up one per cent on last year. There was a 100 per cent pass rate in 30 of the 42 subjects, up from 28 in 2014.

The proportion of students who gained A* and A grades was 20 per cent and three-quarters agained A* to C grades, the same as last year.

Three-quarters of students on BTEC courses also achieved the highest grades.



Principal Jayne Davis, who took up her position in January, said: “I am absolutely delighted with these results. The staff and students have worked very hard to achieve them.

“Our 99 per cent pass rate is particularly impressive when you consider that it is made up of a combination of 42 different subjects. We have already had 500 university places accepted and expect that number to rise in the following weeks.”

Many students collected their results from the college’s Deanfield campus on Thursday last week.

Thomas Cascarini, from Sonning Common, achieved A* in English and in an extended project on story writing as well as Bs in fine art and maths.

He has won a place at the University of East Anglia to study English with critical writing.

Thomas said: “I was starting to think I was going to have to go through clearing and was going to have to accept the fact I was not going to get in.”

Dan Houghton, of Old Copse Gardens, Sonning Common, was awarded an A* for an extended project in chemistry, A grades in chemistry and maths and a B in physics.

He will study chemistry at the University of Warwick. “Everything has fallen into place, which is nice,” he said.

Georgia Smith, of Greenmore, Woodcote, achieved an A* in classics, an A grade in religious studies and a B in philosophy.

The teenager, who will study philosophy at Exeter, said: “I’m pretty damn happy as I was terrified.

“I got the text from Exeter to say I’d got in. I saw the ‘coâ?¦’ at the beginning and wasn’t sure if that was ‘congratulations’ or ‘commiserations’.”

Emiko Bowles, of St Mark’s Road, Henley, was awarded an A* in maths and A grades in psychology and economics. She will now study economics at University College London.

Emiko said: “The maths was a bit iffy and I thought psychology would be the A* so it’s good.”

Matt Eldridge, from Goring, achieved an A* in psychology and A grades in economics and biology.

Matt, who will study biology at Bath University, said: “I was very nervous but I’m relieved and ecstatic really.”

Twins Olivia and Alice Horncastle, from Caversham, will both attend Exeter University.

Olivia achieved A*s in English and geography and an A grade in ancient history and will go on to study   geography.

“I’m relieved and excited,” she said. “I looked online but I wasn’t entirely convinced until I got the bit of paper.”

Alice will study English at university after being awarded an A* in English, a B grade in history and a  C in religious studies.

The girls’ mother Nicky Liddon-Horncastle said: “I’m beyond proud. They both worked really hard and deserved to do well. I’m proud of Caversham!”

At Highdown School and Sixth Form Centre in Emmer Green the overall pass rate was 99 per cent, up from 97.5 per cent a year ago.

Nineteen per cent of students received A* or A grades with 48 per cent achieving A* to B grades, up 10 per cent on last year. Headteacher Rachel Cave said the number of students achieving their first choice university had increased.

Olivia Wieliczko, from Caversham Heights, was awarded A grades in biology, English literature and history and will study English literature and American studies at Manchester  University.

“I did even better then I hoped,” she said. “I’m really, really happy. It’s such a relief because I’ve been so stressed about it as I felt I’d worked so hard.”

Will Underwood, also from Caversham Heights, is going to Worcester College, Oxford, to read law after gaining an A* in English literature, A grades in history and Mandarin and a B in maths.

He said: “I chose Worcester College because it is good for sport and I play rugby. None of my family has been to Oxford or Cambridge. I want to be a barrister one day and work in human rights.”

Ryan Goodall, from Caversham, will attend the University of Sussex to study astrophysics after achieving an A grade in fine art, a B in physics and a C in maths.

He said: “I didn’t get the grades they wanted — ABB — but it was enough to get in so I’m pleased. I want to go into astrophysics. It’s a bit of a cliché, but I have loved space since I was a child.”

Ethan Bird, 19, from Emmer Green, will study mechanical engineering at Derby University. “I’m pretty happy,” he said. “It has not really hit me yet but I’m sure it will over the next few weeks when I start buying kitchen bits to take with me.

“I chose Derby because it’s high in the league tables for my course and I like that part of the world. I’m into hiking and trekking and the Peak District is perfect to do that.”

Ronald Shearman, from Emmer Green, achieved a B grade in psychology and Cs in business and computing.

He had a place to go to Swansea University to study computing but instead has decided to join the navy as an officer. He said: “I changed my mind and wanted to do something different where I get to see the world.”



The Piggott School in Wargrave had an overall pass rate of 99 per cent, 0.3 per cent down on last year.

The proportion of students gaining A* and A grades was 30 per cent, two per cent down on 2014, with 58 per cent of students achieving A* to B grades. A total of 86 per cent achieved A to C grades, a two per cent increase on last year.

Headteacher Derren Gray said: “Our students and staff work exceptionally hard and this is evidenced in this year’s results.

“I wish all our students the very best for their future and thank all the teaching and support staff for their continued dedication and professionalism.”

Across Oxfordshire, the overall pass rate is estimated to be 96 per cent, compared with 95.1 per cent last year.

About 50 per cent of students achieved two or more A-levels at A* to B grade, compared with 46.7 per cent last year.

Nationally, A* and A grades were awarded to 25.9 per cent of entries while the overall pass rate was 98.1 per cent.



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