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Celebrations and commiserations on unusual A-level results day

By Dayna Farrington | Staffordshire | Education | Published: | Last Updated:

It was a day of mixed emotions as A-level students – whose studies were thrown into turmoil by the coronavirus crisis – received their results.

Calista Lawry, Dakota Miller, Hope Rathband-Lake, Dylan Rushburg, Megan Lock and Alireza Ramezanshahsavan at Halesowen College

The boss of one of the region’s main education trust’s said there had been a “huge sense of anti-climax”.

It comes as the Government is mired in controversy over its handling of the process after making an 11th hour decision allowing students to use their mock grades or opt to re-sit if they are not happy with their results.

And many students are expected to appeal their results after nearly 40 per cent of grades were downgraded, according to data from Ofqual.

Jane Kendrick, director of Invictus Sixth Form – which is responsible for Crestwood in Kingswinford, Ellowes Hall Sports College in Dudley, Kinver High School, Leasowes High School in Halesowen, and Wombourne High School – said the opportunity for students to sit their final exams was suddenly “taken away from them”.

Faith Imeson-Wood, Morgan Woodward, Amy Langstone and Harvey Bowen at Kinver High School

Ms Kendrick said: “Back in September 2019, none of our year 13 students or Invictus staff could have ever imagined that a global pandemic would arrive, putting a halt to A-level and BTEC courses.

“Our students had been working extremely hard in preparation for their final exams, when suddenly this opportunity was taken away from them.

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“Some were understandably relieved at the thought of not having to take final exams but the majority felt a huge sense of anti-climax and loss at not being able to show what they were capable of. In spite of these very strange circumstances we are, once again, delighted with the results our year 13 students have achieved.”

At Dudley College, there was an overall pass rate of 99.3 per cent.

College chief executive and principal Neil Thomas said: “Learners who have worked hard over many months – including via online learning in lockdown should be proud of what they have achieved – we shouldn’t take that away from them.”

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Joseph McKaig, Amrita Pahal, Will Fletcher-Taylor, Rohan Sharma and Keval Thanki at Tettenhall College

Student Daniel Folan, 17, achieved an A* in maths and further maths, and an A in computer science and physics. He will now go on to study for a degree in mathematics and computer science at University of Warwick.

He said: “I found the environment at college very supportive – tutors were very helpful and my classmates and I kept each other going through lockdown working on teams.”

At Tettenhall College, more than a quarter of students secured grades at A* and A, with 55 per cent achieving A* to B grades. And 77 per cent of students gained A* to C grades.

Christopher McAllister, headteacher, said: “This academic year has been like no other. It has presented challenges that none of us could have foreseen. Yet, I am so proud of the students and staff.”

Mollie Green is happy with her A* and 2 As at Stafford Grammar School

At Stafford Grammar School, the overall A-level pass rate was 100 per cent. The students achieved 68 per cent of all results at A* to B grades. The highest achievers were 18-year-old Chloe Patrick, with four A* and one A.

While Robert Strang gained three A* to get a place at Oxford University to study philosophy, politics and economics. Thirty per cent of A-level grades attained at Royal School in Wolverhampton were at A*, A and B. While, a total of 82 per cent of students at St Dominics Grammar School in Brewood achieved A* to B grades, and the school’s headteacher, Peter McNabb, said the outstanding results were well-deserved. At Kinver High School, 87 per cent of all grades awarded were at A* to C grade or equivalent. And around a third of all grades were A* to A grades.

More than 100 students at Highfields School in Wolverhampton are now preparing to go to university.

Steve Pycroft, head of sixth form, said: “We are so proud of our students. It’s been a very strange year, with coronavirus and lockdown meaning they didn’t get to sit their exams, but they have done a brilliant job.”

Robbie Strang gets a hug from his parents Martin and Rachel at Stafford Grammar after he gained 3A*s

At Ellowes Hall Sports College, 100 per cent of students passed their courses, with 85 per cent achieving A* to C grades. At Crestwood School, in Kingswinford, 92 per cent passed their A-levels at grades A* to C.

At Halesowen College, the overall pass rate was 98.17 per cent.

It was a 96 per cent overall pass rate at Shireland Collegiate Academy, in Smethwick. At Cannock Chase High School, 100 per cent of students achieved A* to E grades. Seventy-three per cent of all grades at Windsor High School and Sixth Form in Halesowen were A* to C grades.

St Francis of Assisi Catholic College, based in Aldridge, has seen 58 per cent of students achieve at least one A* to B grade.

At Colton Hill Community School, in Wolverhampton, 60 per cent of A-level students awarded at least one A* to B grade.

Students at Stourport High School and Kidderminster’s Baxter College should be “justifiably proud” of their grades, says Severn Academies Educational Trust’s chief executive Chris King.

At Kingsmead School in Hednesford 63 per cent of A-levels taken achieved the highest grades - A* to B - while 33 per cent of the results were A* to A grades.

At Cheslyn Hay Academy, 80 per cent of all grades awarded were A* to C.

Dayna Farrington

By Dayna Farrington
Senior reporter based at Wolverhampton

Reporter for the Express & Star based at Wolverhampton.

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