Pupils at St Joseph’s Catholic Academy were celebrating today after picking up their GCSE results.
The school, in Mill Lane, Hebburn, saw 55% of pupils earn five A* to C grades including maths and English and 66% of pupils pick up five A*s to Cs overall.
Headteacher Frank O’Neill said: “It’s a bit lower than what we expected but we’re hoping that the percentage including maths and English will go up to 60% following remarks, which is what our target was for this year group.
“You never get a clear picture of what the results are on the first day.
“Our number of A* to B grades has gone up this year, with 38% of all grades, and we’re very pleased with the improvement in the top grades.
“Our English results have improved by 10% from last year and we’ve also had a 7% improvement on our EBAC results.
“We’ve had very strong performances from subjects across the board, particularly in RE and languages.”
He added: “The 55% is disappointing but we’re hoping it will improve after remarks. Some of the kids passed English but not maths and maths but not English, and some of them were only a couple of marks away.
“The grade boundaries went up again this year, meaning that a mark that would have got you a C last year wouldn’t this year.”
Among the youngsters celebrating was 16-year-old Jack Young, from Jarrow, who scooped five A*s, six As and a B.
He’s staying on at the school’s sixth form to study further maths, chemistry and physics.
He said: “I’m chuffed, I was really surprised because I didn’t expect to do so well.
“I wasn’t really nervous, I was quite relaxed but still very shocked.”
Matthew Rutherford, 16, from Pelaw, earned three As, three Bs and three Cs.
He’s soon to begin an engineering apprenticeship with the NHS.
He said: “I’m really pleased with my results, I was really nervous before I opened them. Some are a lot better than I was expecting and some were a bit less but I’m really pleased.”
Lewis McManus, 16, from Jarrow, got an A, three Bs and five Cs.
He’s coming back to St Joseph’s Sixth Form in September to study engineering.
He said: “I’m really pleased with my results because I was really nervous about them. It’s been a hard year but it’s all paid off.”
Jack Davis, 16, from Jarrow, picked up an A*, two As, four Bs and four Cs.
He has interviews coming up and hopes to secure an apprenticeship in electrical engineering.
He said: “I’m really happy with my results, I was nervous coming in to get them.
“I’m hoping to go straight into a job after finishing an apprenticeship.”