Tuesday, 16 August 2022

Local schools buck national GCSE trend

Schools in the Henley area have bucked the national trend with a record set of GCSE results.

Schools in the Henley area have bucked the national trend with a record set of GCSE results.

Nationally, the results released today dropped to the lowest level in a decade, but several schools in and around the town are celebrating their best results ever.

One of those is Gillotts School in Henley, where a total of 84 per cent of students achieved the benchmark of five or more passes at grade C and above, including English and maths.

This is a 10 per cent rise on last year and beating the previous record of 82 per cent in 2014.

The students achieving grade C and above in both English and maths was 87 per cent.

Thirty-two per cent gained an A* or A in English language and 30 per cent in maths.

In each of biology, chemistry, physics more than 45 per cent of grades were A* or A.

Head teacher Catharine Darnton said she was "delighted” with the results.

"These results will confirm us as one of the consistently best performing schools in Oxfordshire,” she said. "This is a consequence of the commitment and hard work of the students and staff.

"I am very proud of all that the students have achieved and would also like to recognise all the support that students have received from their families. These results come about through successful collaboration between student, teachers and parents."

Shiplake College is also celebrating after another impressive set of GCSE results.

Pupils have improved on the percentage of top results, gaining 23 per cent A* to A grades, up from 21 per cent in 2015. The percentage of A* to C grades overall has also increased from 88 per cent to 91 per cent, and a significant improvement from 76 per cent in 2013.

Headmaster Gregg Davies said: "This is another pleasing set of results. Our pupils have worked hard, applying themselves to the seriousness of these public examinations whilst showing great commitment to the many other co-curricular activities we offer.

"There are many departments celebrating 100 per cent A* to C success, with 100 per cent A* and A for those who took GCSE maths. It is a pleasure to watch our dedicated staff take as much enjoyment as the pupils and parents on results days like these.

"I am extremely proud of all that our pupils offer the Shiplake community and look forward to watching them as they progress into the sixth form, sharing with them the next stage of their journeys.”

Icknield Commuity College in Watlington also achieved a record set of results.

The school in Love Lane saw 70 per cent of students achieve five or more A* to C grades, including English and Maths, up from 65 per cent last year.

A total of 74 per cent achieved five or more A*s to Cs in any subjects, while 86 per cent got an A* to C grade in English and 72 per cent did the same in maths.

One of the highest achievers was 16-year-old Lauren Edwards, from Chalgrove, who scored seven A*s, three As and a B.

Lauren was joined on results day by her parents Leanne and Paul and brothers Harrison, 13, Max, six, and Flynn, four. The family are moving to Somerset tomorrow, with Lauren’s results meaning she has got in to college there.

She said: "I wasn’t expecting so many A*s, so I’m surprised but happy.

"I only got three hours sleep last night but the adrenaline kept me going this morning. My mum and dad are very pleased.”

Headteacher Mat Hunter said: "It is great to break the 70 per cent threshold for the first time in the school’s history, having broken the 60 per cent mark last year.

"I would like to congratulate all of our students who have achieved success and thank the staff and parents who supported them to do so.”

At the Piggott School in Wargrave, 78 per cent of students got five A* to C grades including English and maths, also a record high for the school. The figure last year was 75 per cent.

A total of 91 per cent of students passed maths and the pass rate for English was 82 per cent.

Among the highest achievers were Laurence Jackman and Olivia Munns, both 16, who achieved 11 and 10 A*s respectively.

Olivia, from Earley, said: "I’m so relieved, I was so stressed. It’s so amazing, I didn’t expect this, there were a few tears!

"My mum is here, she is very happy but cried a bit as well.”

Olivia will be staying at the school to study A-levels in geography, physics and chemistry.

Headteacher Derren Gray said: "This is an outstanding set of results. The students and staff have all worked exceptionally hard to achieve our best ever results.

"There are a lot of smiling faces and the huge majority will be back with us for sixth form.”

Langtree School in Woodcote also bagged its best ever results as 75 per cent scored five or more A* to C grades, including English and maths, up from 69 per cent last year.

A total of fourteen students secured ten or more grades at A* and A. Among the highest achievers were Flo Turtle, who got 11 A*s and an A, Alex Smith with 10 A*s and two As and Kit Leyland, who achieved nine A*s and three As.

Overall, 35 per cent of the grades were at A* or A, an increase of nine per cent on 2015.

Headteacher Rick Holroyd said: "This was, quite simply, a lovely cohort of students to work with, the vast majority of whom applied themselves and worked extremely hard for their GCSE examinations, taking advantage of the countless hours of additional tuition and support offered by the staff in the run up to the exam season.

"To secure the best results the school has ever achieved is a great achievement but, more importantly, it is extremely gratifying to think that our class of 2016 will move on to their destinations with confidence and some excellent results.

"These record outcomes, combined with the wonderful personal qualities of these students, will set them up well for the next stage of their lives.”

At the Oratory School for boys in Woodcote, the pass rate for pupils with five or more A* to C grades, including English and maths, was 90 per cent, down one per cent on last year.

Eighty-four per cent received A* to C grades across all subjects compared to 86 per cent last year.

Matt Syddall, head of sixth form, said: “This is an excellent set of A*-C grades and the best set of grades at A*- A since 2010. This is due reward for all the hard work of both boys and teaching staff.”

At Chiltern Edge School in Sonning Common there was an increase in A* and A grades for the most able students. The top subjects for progress were Geography, Physics, Drama and Food Technology.

Headteacher Daniel Sadler said: "We are delighted that such a high proportion of students have hit their targets and will be heading off to their chosen sixth form places and apprenticeships in September."

Seven girls from Cranford House School in Moulsford scored 41 A* and A grades between them.

Gabie Buckler, Isobel Colin, Matilda Money-Kyrle and Daisy Stuart of Henley, Amy Edwards of Shiplake and Madeleine Jacob of Stoke Row bagged the grades, while Suzanne Penrose of Henley swept the board with eleven A* and A grades.

The school celebrated its third consecutive year of record-breaking GCSE results, with 61 per of grades at A* to A 91 per cent at A* to B.

Headmaster Dr James Raymond said: "This is an incredible achievement and real evidence of both our girls’ hard work and our continued academic success here at Cranford House.

These are tremendous results, particularly for a non-selective school. I am hugely proud of both our pupils and our dedicated teachers and I look forward to Cranford House continuing on this superb trajectory.”

Three quarters of pupils at Highdown School and Sixth Form Centre in Emmer Green achieved five more passes at A* to C including English and maths.

Performance in those subjects was especially strong, with 87.3 per cent of students achieving A* to C in English and 83.5 per cent scoring in that range for maths.

Just under 57 per cent of students achieved at least one A* or A grade while 19.2 per cent achieved eight or more at the top end.

High achievers included Jasmin Bahra, who scored an A* with distinction in further maths plus 10 A* grades and an A. The 16-year-old, of Kelmscott Close in Caversham, will be going on to sixth form at the Kendrick School in Reading.

She said: "I'm really happy as I was expecting worse. I'm here with my mum and brother and they're both really pleased as well - my mum started crying when I told her the good news."

Head teacher Rachel Cave said: "We are very proud of these results and the strong performance at the top end, which for a full intake comprehensive school is a truly outstanding achievement."

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