The new way of grading GCSE exams hasn’t stopped pupils at Whitburn Academy from achieving what their principal has described as “excellent” results.
Headteacher Alan Hardie says he is delighted with the success of his students as they embraced the “more demanding” curriculum and “harder” exams.
Coupled with students having only one practice paper in each subject to test out the areas they needed to concentrate their efforts on before the big exams, and the late publication of text books, Mr Hardie says their success deserved to be recognised.
The school recorded 88% of its pupils gaining a level 4 or higher in English and 81% in maths.
Students Jenny Elder and Abbie Graham achieved the top level of 9 in their English Language, English literature and maths exams and A*s in nine other subjects.
Mr Hardie said: “Congratulations to the Class of 2017 for achieving excellent GCSE exam results despite the increased difficulty of the reformed exams in English Language, English literature and mathematics.
The pupils’ successes deserve to be recognised in light of the increased difficulty this year.Alan Hardie
“We are delighted with the successes of our pupils, especially given the more demanding curriculum and harder exams.
“Preparation was made much more difficult by only having one practice paper in each subject, no guidance on grade boundaries and the late publication of text books.
“Despite this our pupils have once again excelled, and I would like to pay tribute to their efforts.
“The pupils’ successes deserve to be recognised in light of the increased difficulty this year, with exams once again becoming more of a memory test in the style of the old O-level exams.
“Our headline figures of 88% of pupils gaining level 4 or higher in English and 81% in mathematics are testimony to the efforts of the pupils and the hard work of the staff in supporting the pupils.
“There are many success stories for individual pupils to celebrate amongst the results and not just the new top grades.
“However, the fact that two of our pupils gained three grade 9s and nine A*s is a superb achievement.”