It was a record-breaking morning at Leighton Buzzard’s Vandyke Upper School, as students received “outstanding GCSE results” when they opened their envelopes.
More than 40 per cent of students gained the highest grades 9-7 in English – that is A*/A on the old grading system, while 84 per cent gained 9-4 in English.
Meanwhile, in Maths 76 per cent of pupils gained 9-4, and 73 per cent of Science grades were at 9-4.
The school’s marks even topped its excellent performance from 2018, and Geography, French, German and Media Studies were also particular strengths.
Vandyke headteacher, Tim Carroll, said: “Congratulations to the class of 2019! It has been a really enjoyable morning with so many students and parents coming in and a terrific atmosphere. So many students have worked so hard and deserve their successes. They have done brilliantly.
“Most students have taken nine or ten subjects - that’s more than 25 exams to sit in many cases – a real pressure situation they prepared for well, and they have more than met the challenge. They have been a super group of students to work with. Staff understandably feel proud of them and their achievements today.”
He added: “Looking at the results for the school overall they are another remarkable set of grades that even top last year’s outstanding results and follow on from another set of very strong A Level grades last week. They are a measure of the strength of the school and the skill, hard work and commitment of Vandyke staff.
“Everybody associated with Vandyke can take pride in these achievements.
“Lots of subjects have very strong results making it an impressive performance by students across the piece.”
Student, Leah Sibley, said: “I am over the moon with my results. I couldn’t sleep last night. I got 9 in my English but I am most pleased with my 7 in
Maths because I worked really hard in Maths with my teacher giving me extra help every morning before school.”
James Brunton, commented: “The waiting was hard but was okay until yesterday but it was exciting today. I feel my hard work has paid off and I am especially pleased with my maths and science grades, because these are the subjects I will now take at A Level. The exam period was hard, it really dragged on and I counted I did 28 separate exams so it’s good it is all over for now.”
Jadzia Brown got grade 8 or 9 in her Science, History and English. She said: “It only really hit me this morning but I am pleased with my grades and how it has all worked out. I will be going into the Sixth Form to study Psychology, Philosophy, Music, and English.”
Gracie Trotter, Eva Pattison and Niamh Snowden were three friends celebrating together.
“It feels amazing,” Eva said. “When I opened my results I just burst into tears which is crazy but I am so happy.”
“I am in shock,” was Gracie’s reaction. “I moved schools partway through. My teachers at Vandyke made me focus and it has really paid off so I am now going into the Sixth Form.”
Niamh added: “I am just delighted and looking forward to Sixth Form. I tried really hard and I got so much support from my brilliant teachers.”
Cara Randall got seven grade 9 and three grade 8. She said: “I had really good teachers and I worked hard. I did feel the pressure and the last few days of waiting have been hard. I woke up at 4am this morning but it’s a really good feeling now. I am going to join the Sixth Form at Vandyke to study Maths, Biology, Chemistry and Geography.”
Mr Carroll concluded: “For students from all starting points performance is very strong and well above national average. I am especially pleased to see the further increase in the performance of students with the highest target grades with 16 per cent of students achieving the top grades 9-7 in English and Maths compared to 10 per cent last year.
“53 per cent achieved 9-5 in English and Maths (up from 45 per cent in 2018) and 72 per cent achieved 9-4 in English and maths which is up from 68 per cent in 2018.”
“Many students now go on to the Vandyke Sixth Form while others move on to college or apprenticeships. We wish them all well.”