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A-Level Results Day 2019: Updates from Maidstone schools


It's the day thousands of teenagers have been waiting for, A-level results are out.

Our reporters and photographers will be at schools across Maidstone as students rip open those all-important envelopes.

The results can have a big impact on what young people do next with going to university among the options.

But if the grades weren't as good as expected, help is at hand from organisations like UCAS.

Aylesford School

Left: head girl Sam Brown achieved two distinctions, in business and sport; centre: head teacher Tanya Kelvie; right:head boy Joshua Upson who achieved two distinctions in business and ICT and a merit in sport (15319999)
Left: head girl Sam Brown achieved two distinctions, in business and sport; centre: head teacher Tanya Kelvie; right:head boy Joshua Upson who achieved two distinctions in business and ICT and a merit in sport (15319999)

The school achieved a 98% pass rate with a significant number of A* and A grade equivalents in science, health and social care, business and sport. The school also had its first cohort achieving the International Baccalaureate Careers Programme Award.

All students were successful a place at their desired destination.

A number of students secured places at university to study subjects as diverse as accounting and finance, biomedical sciences, law with criminology, primary education and


Other students will be taking up workplaces or undertaking professional training with some taking up apprenticeships and employment with BMW, Balfour Beatty, KHP Country Homes and TPS Global.

Head teacher Tanya Kelvie said: "We congratulate all of our students and know that our emphasis on good academic qualifications as well as developing good character will put them in great stead in the future.

"We are delighted to be offering the International Baccalaureate Careers Related Programme in our Sixth Form as one of our pathways and we remain in a strong position to offer a full range of successful courses for students who live in and around Aylesford."

Benenden School

Some of the top A-level performers at Benenden School (15295946)
Some of the top A-level performers at Benenden School (15295946)

An impressive 19% of all grades were at A* while more than half (53%) were A* or A. Overall, 80% of grades were A*-B. Headmistress Samantha Price said: “Many congratulations to our students on their excellent performances this year. I am immensely pleased with what they have achieved, especially in the face of some incredibly challenging exam papers this year. Benenden girls have, as ever, done themselves proud and are celebrating very well-deserved results.

“We are delighted to see them moving on to some of the top university destinations in the world, armed not only with excellent exam results but, crucially, with the additional skills and experience that come from a Benenden education.

“For example, our leaving sixth formers have run businesses as part of our Professional Skills Programme, constructed a microlight and a racing car, debated around the world as part of the Model United Nations, jumped from a parachute, organised a series of inspirational talks and worked with real energy and commitment in the wider community. We know the Class of 2019 will go out and make a hugely positive difference in the world.”

Benenden’s results included numerous stories of individual achievement, as 19 students gained two or more A* grades, with four of these girls gaining three A*s and an A each. An incredible 60 girls gained ABB or above and 58 girls gained three or more A-levels with nothing less than a B.

Six girls took Mandarin Pre-U, gaining extremely high marks: which the school says is testimony to its Confucius Award, given by the Chinese government in recognition of exceptional teaching of Mandarin.

One-hundred per cent of those taking Art gained an A* or A, with several girls progressing to prestigious foundation courses in art, textiles and design: one girl was shortlisted as a finalist for the National Young Fashion Designer Award and another had a piece exhibited in the Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy.

Ninety per cent of this year’s girls have achieved their first or second choice of university destination, with the cohort of 94 students going on to study subjects as diverse as medicine, engineering, computer science, finance, liberal arts, international relations, geography and social anthropology, and animal behaviour and welfare.

One girl will be studying sport performance and is currently training with the rowing squad at Team GB as well as playing Lacrosse for Wales.

Studying abroad is a popular option, with a number of students off to the US, including one to Yale, as well as one to McGill in Canada and another to Australia.

Alongside their A-levels, Benenden girls study the bespoke Professional Skills Programme which prepares girls for the workplace. The course is designed jointly by the school and blue-chip employers and recruitment consultants, and every girl has the chance to run her own business during her time in the sixth form.

Furthermore, 35 girls took the optional EPQ, which is similar to a university dissertation and accredits the skills of independent research and essay writing, and 27 of these gained A* or A grades.

Bethany School, Goudhurst

In March, it was announced that the school was in the top 2% nationally for A-level progress and this year’s cohort have now achieved a record number of A*/A grades across the school’s 27 subjects and courses.

Those Year 13 pupils who have achieved notable successes and are going onto top

universities include academic scholar, Lewis Baker (Benenden) who achieved A*, A*, A*, A, A and will read economics at the University of Exeter.

Head of School, Maria Dougan (London) also achieved the grades to read medicine and surgery at Lancaster University, as did Suyeon Woo (Surrey) who will now read biomedical science at University College London.

Headmaster, Francie Healy, said: “Knowing each pupil as well as I do, I am thrilled for every one of our Year 13 pupils receiving such great results today. Underneath every headline are many individual success stories which sum up our ethos as a School: all the staff here put the wellbeing of each pupil first. It is entirely rewarding to witness the young people who we have come to know so well achieve their potential and, very often, go beyond it. Much gratitude is due to the brilliant staff and supportive parents who have helped our pupils achieve these successes. It has been a superb team effort.”

Cornwallis Academy

Emily Ball and Ella Standen from Cornwallis Academy
Emily Ball and Ella Standen from Cornwallis Academy

The academy has seen a 16% increase in the number of students achieving A*- C, and a 20% improvement in the number of students achieving A*- B grades. Joseph Sutton, the director of sixth form, said: “We are very proud of these outcomes as they reflect the dedication of our students, staff and parents. Congratulations to all Year 13 students.”

Notable success stories included Matthew Burke who achieved two As and one B. He is considering studying history at university. Charlie Haffenden achieved three As and one C and is going on to study journalism at Sheffield University. David Hammond achieved two As and one B.

He will be studying veterinary medicine after having completed a gap year. Robert Hammond achieved one A, one B and a Distinction, Robert will be studying towards a paramedic degree next year. Oliver Leopard achieved one A, one B and one C. Joshua Liston achieved one A and two Bs. Joshua has applied to join the Metropolitan Police. Emily Ball achieved one A*, one A, one B and one C. Emily is considering offers from the universities of York and East Anglia.

Ella Standen achieved one A*, one A, one B and one C. She begins a higher-level apprenticeship at Bam Nuttall this September. Bronte Mitchell achieved one Distinction and two Bs. Bronte is looking forward to studying illustration at UCA Rochester. Kiara Taylor achieved one Distinction and two Bs.

Cranbrook School

Headmaster John Weeds said: “These results are highly creditable and down to supreme efforts by our teachers to get on top of new style A-levels. They have done so remarkably well. We have improved by 8% at the higher level with 70% grades achieved at A*-B. Our students are on course for a very successful time of it in their applications to universities. All credit to our five Oxbridge candidates who actually exceeded the grades they needed. Well done to everyone involved.”

The Hayesbrook School, Tonbridge

Students from The Hayesbrook School get their results (15281785)
Students from The Hayesbrook School get their results (15281785)

The school once again boasted a 100% pass rate in the technical and applied general courses business studies and sport science where the average grade is Distinction. Initial figures also indicate excellent achievements in A-level courses with an overall pass rate of over 94% and 100% pass rates in English Literature, product design (technology), extended project, history, chemistry and geography.

Executive Principal Daniel Hatley said: “Once again, I am extremely proud of what our brilliant students have achieved – the trend of impressive results in our sixth form continues. Their successes are so well deserved and are also a testament to the hard work and dedication of the staff at The Hayesbrook School as well as the support of our students’ families. We are extremely pleased for them all and look forward to hearing about their continued successes as they start the next exciting stage of their lives.

"At Hayesbrook we are relentlessly focused on ensuring students access the career or university of their choice and I am absolutely delighted that their education with us means the class of 2019 are leaving with such bright futures.”

Some of the destinations students are moving on to include Portsmouth University (criminology and cyber crime), Southampton University (English and history), Exeter University (maths), Warwick University (chemistry), University of Reading (finance), University of Surrey (mechanical engineering and University of Derby (business, accountancy and finance). An increasing number of the Year 13 pupils have also been successful in applying for higher level apprenticeships. As well as key individual successes the overall grades indicate that 73% were A*-C grades and an impressive 38% of grades were A*, A or B.

This includes the achievement of those studying applied and technical qualifications. This is a highly commendable achievement. Amongst other outstanding results the academy congratulates the following students whose portfolio of achievement includes: As in maths, chemistry and physics for Illya Freeman, As in maths and chemistry and B in physics for Eddie Rugg, A in geography and Bs in English Literature and history for Tim Boltun, two Distinction* grades in business and B in history for James Simmonds, Distinction*/Distinction in business and A in maths for Rohan Pun and Jakob Pincott achieved Distinction*, two Distinctions and a Merit. Oliver Johnson achieved three A-levels including an A and the very top grade of A*.

Head of School Collette Nelson added: “I am delighted that our Year 13 pupils have achieved such great results again this year. Hard work and dedication has been rewarded with a tremendous set of qualifications.”

Holmesdale Technology College

The 2019 results showed an improvement on last year’s academic qualifications. There was a significant increase in students achieving A*-C grades or equivalent which rose this year to more than two-thirds. This year the students took and completed the International Baccalaureate (IBCP), giving them qualifications that include both academic and vocational.

Students who did particularly well include Aurelija Drazbaite who achieved the IBCP including a Distinction in business , Ryan Collins who gained the IBCP including a Distinction in engineering, Harry Gearing bagged himself the IBCP including a Distinction in business and sport as well as a 6 in maths, which is a particularly high grade for the IB.

Elsewhere, Connor Whitley achieved the IBCP including Distinctions in business and 5s in geography and psychology and Thandi Zivengwa also gained the IBCP including Distinction in sport. There are an increasing number of students going to university, with many going to the University of Kent or Canterbury Christ Church University and others are going as far afield as Leeds and Plymouth.

Head teacher Nicki Hodges said: “We would like to congratulate the students on their hard work. We are very proud of their achievements. It is good to see so many opting to continue with their education. We would also like to thank the staff for all their hard work in preparing students for their exams and supporting them so well.”

Hillview School for Girls

Hillview School: Jasmine Etuate, Mia Lulham, Daniel Boldring and Ella Alemayehu-Lambert (15283774)
Hillview School: Jasmine Etuate, Mia Lulham, Daniel Boldring and Ella Alemayehu-Lambert (15283774)

This year's results are the best in the school’s history, with more than 72% of all grades being A* to C grades, and 40% at A* to B. Top students wereZoe Biagini-Jones A*A*A; Charlotte Lester A*AA; Mia Lulham A*AA; Jasmine Etuate A*A Distinction; William Holloway AAA; Sally Monk with three Distinctions; Phoebe Thompson A*A*B; Ella Alemayehu-Lambert AAB; Rachel Romano AAB; Libby Smith (Head Girl) AAB; Natasha Sturgess AAB;Louis Griffiths AAB and Daniel Boldrini A*AC.

Head teacher Hilary Burkett said: “I am delighted that our Year 13 students have achieved such fantastic grades. They have been an incredible year group showing high levels of commitment from day one of their studies and they truly deserve this success.

“It’s wonderful to see so many of them achieve the high grades they need to move on to the next stage in their education or employment. Congratulations, class of 2019."

Vice-Chair of Governors Nick Hobden added: “Our bright young students have delivered on expectations and been a credit to the school’s academic history.”

Invicta Grammar School

Amelia Cox from Invicta Grammar School (15282751)
Amelia Cox from Invicta Grammar School (15282751)

Out of 144 pupils who sat exams 85% achieved A*- C grades, with 11% getting at least one A*. Emily Rowe from Maidstone got an A in physics, A in maths, B in design technology and an A in her EPQ. She said: “I am overwhelmed, it’s been a really tough two years and I have worked so hard. I was revising everyday for hours but I am really happy to be going to Sheffield University to study civil engineering.”

Emily Doye from Chatham got an A in drama and Bs in dance and classics. She said: “It’s amazing I feel so overwhelmed and like it’s kind of unreal. I am dyslexic so to do this well is a great feeling I was just praying for the best really. I am going to study musical theatre at Chichester University, I hope to perform obviously but eventually I would like to open my own dance studio and teach.”

Invicta Grammar School pupils - Emily Doye and Honor Wines- celebrate their A-level results(15287340)
Invicta Grammar School pupils - Emily Doye and Honor Wines- celebrate their A-level results(15287340)

Honor Wines from Sevenoaks achieved an A in drama, a C in English and a C in classics. She said: “I am really really happy. I’ve got the grades to go to my dream school so I’m all good. I am going to the Guildhall School for Music and Dance to study opera, the school only lets in 14 people so I'm feeling great. My dream is to sing at Covent Garden and then eventually the West End.”

Amelia Cox from Maidstone bagged herself an A in business, an A in economics and a C in French. She said: “I am feeling really happy, I never thought I would get into my first choice for university. It’s been a very hard time and the school have been so supportive and they have just been so amazing.” Amelia is going to study business management at Bath University.

The Judd School

The Judd School's A-level students celebrate (15296487)
The Judd School's A-level students celebrate (15296487)

This year some 400 A-level results were graded A* or A, representing almost two in three of all grades and an increase on last year. Overall, 88% of grades were A* - B. This year also saw the continuation of the school’s commitment to offer a broad and challenging curriculum with almost half of all students achieving four passes, an increasingly rare sight with schools under such financial pressure and students sitting a greater than ever number of exams with their associated pressure.

12 students achieved straight A*s (or equivalent): Ethan Arnold; Rose Blyth; George Coote; Luke Davies; Max De Bono; Ayush Gupta; Holly Hayward; Pippa Jackson; Milla Keith; Jessica Lally; Kartik Velayudham and Adam Winnifrith.

Particular congratulations should go to Rose Blyth, who actually achieved five A*s in maths and further maths, physics, chemistry and music, together with outstanding STEP success, securing her place to read maths at Cambridge. Praise too to Harry Mouat who achieved six A-levels, including four at A* grade, having taken part in a successful pilot group of students working together to study computer science without assistance.

Head teacher Jon Wood said: “I am delighted that the hard work and determination of our students and staff have yet again delivered outstanding results. Truly deserved, these results will open doors to them for the rest of their lives. Students face a world changing at a rapid pace, but they have shown they are ready – intellectually and emotionally – to take those next steps with confidence. I wish the class of 2019 a fond farewell as they embark on their future lives.”

Kent College Pembury

Kent College students celebrate (15278849)
Kent College students celebrate (15278849)

Students achieved a 100% pass rate with over 35% of grades awarded at A*- A. Three quarters of grades were A*- B. Headmistress Julie Lodrick said: “Once again I am delighted to see our girls doing so well. Our school’s academic development and pastoral care ensures an all-round confidence, allowing our girls to surpass expectations. I am extremely proud of all of them.”

Many of the girls are heading to leading Russell Group Universities including Durham, Exeter and Edinburgh, as well as to international destinations including Colorado State University.

The Lenham School

Students are celebrating a strong set of level 3 BTEC results with 85% pass rate at Distinction*- Pass. All pupils secured their first choice destinations at university, in apprenticeships or employment. Notable high performers were Lucy Bishop who secured a distinction in media, and merits inhealth and social care. She will be going on to study primary education at Canterbury Christ Church University.

Kallum Balcomb received a merit in business and passes in science and IT and will now study marine biology at the University of Anglia Ruskin. Kathleen Harris is due to begin an apprenticeship at the Saks Academy in hairdressing after gaining a Distinction in dance and merits in media and business.

Head teacher Chris Foreman said: “I am proud of the achievements of our students and wish them well in their futures. Meeting them as they collected their results highlighted the dedication and hard work displayed by both students and teachers. There was an air of excitement as students started to plan for university, apprenticeship or employment."

Maidstone Grammar School

Peter Foreman, who got four A*s at Maidstone Grammar School, with his parents Ian and Emma (15270400)
Peter Foreman, who got four A*s at Maidstone Grammar School, with his parents Ian and Emma (15270400)

The school achieved a good and improving set of results. Of the 166 pupils who sat the exam, 84% obtained A* to C grades. The percentage of A* results was eight, while 60%of studentsachieved grades A* to B, up five percent on the previous year. Forty students achieved two A grades or better, and 18 three A grades or better.

The top students were Cagri Ustaoglu, who achieved four A*s and an A, while while Peter Foreman secured four A*s. Bradley Cahalin, Robert Sunnucks all gained three A*s. Every student achieved what they needed to take up their university offers, so there were no disappointed faces.

Headmaster Mark Tomkins said: “These very good results and the improvement from last year reflect the hard work of students and staff at a time when there have been lots of changes to many A-level subjects."

Maidstone Grammar School for Girls

MGGS student Sophie Minns with her mum Helen. Sophie achieved 4A*s and is off to Cambridge to read psychology (15276486)
MGGS student Sophie Minns with her mum Helen. Sophie achieved 4A*s and is off to Cambridge to read psychology (15276486)

The school has its best set of A-level results since the curriculum reform, which is recognition of the many hours of hard work students have put in, together with the support and guidance of the teaching staff throughout their time at MGGS.

A total of 149 students sat between them 450 A level examinations. More than a quarter of all grades were A* or A, with 22 students achieving, 3, 4 or 5 A*/A grades. There was a 3% increase in the number of A* - B grades, while 86% of pupils achieved A*- C grades.

Head teacher Deborah Stanley said: “We are delighted with the achievements of all our students this summer and wish them the very best for the future.”

The Maplesden Noakes School

Zac Byskup (Head Boy) collecting his results together with his parents at The Maplesden Noakes School (15273431)
Zac Byskup (Head Boy) collecting his results together with his parents at The Maplesden Noakes School (15273431)

Almost two-thirds of students received a top grade, A*-B, with a good percentage of those being A*-As. There was a 100% pass rate in vocational courses with more than 55% of these being at Distinction*/A* Level. Included in these results are Zak Byskup (Head Boy) who has achieved A, A and B grades and is going on to study sports management at Loughborough University.

Bethany Longhurst achieved A, A and B grades in biology, graphics and art and Grace Carter achieved A, B and B grades in psychology, sociology and business.

Deputy head teacher Tom Newcombe said: “117 students sat the exams and we would like to congratulate them and their teachers for all their hard work.”

Oakwood Park Grammar School

Nina Lewis, Lauren Sheahan, Emmanuel Fanthome-Hodgson, Joseph Smy, Daniel Turner, Fred Duffield, Harry Gowers and Evan Lewis from Oakwood Park Grammar School (15280209)
Nina Lewis, Lauren Sheahan, Emmanuel Fanthome-Hodgson, Joseph Smy, Daniel Turner, Fred Duffield, Harry Gowers and Evan Lewis from Oakwood Park Grammar School (15280209)

Almost a third of the year achieved A* and A grades, with many students winning to the opportunity to study a wide variety of subjects in the world’s top educational institutions. After achieving A*AA with A* in the EPQ, Head Girl, Nina Lewis, will take up her place at University College, Oxford to study English.

Daniel Miller achieved A*A*A B and an A* in the extended project and is looking forward to studying maths. Evan Lewis, who with A*AA and A* for the EPQ will study at the Institute of the Americas, University College London.

Also celebrating places at universities ranked in the top ten are Lauren Sheahan who will study politics at Warwick and Robert Mills who heads further north to Durham to study accounting and finance. Gabrielle Hodgson achieved A*AA and with an A* in her EPQ goes to Bristol to study biochemistry.

Also heading to Russell Group universities are Joseph Smy, and James Glasson who, after achieving A*AA, are both off to York to study chemistry. Russell Group institutions will also welcome OPGS high achieving social scientists Daniel Turner with A*A*A and Harry Gowers with A*AA and A*in his EPQ, who head to Nottingham and Southampton to study criminology.

Emmanuel Fanthome-Hodgson who, with four As and A* for his EPQ, will go on to study law. OPGS is also proud to see students go further afield, such as Fred Duffield, who with A*AA and an A in his EPQ, is planning to study animation in Canada. Some students also wish to pursue alternative pathways to ambitious professions.

Head Boy, Thomas Place is launching straight into a City career. In a similar vein, Mathematician Alexander Pollington will join accountancy firm Wilkins Kennedy on a degree apprenticeship and Scarlett Wright will join the Metropolitan Police.

Head Kevin Moody said: “I am delighted to see so many of our students achieve top grades and win places at prestigious universities. Their hard work with the support of their teachers has been impressive and their results well deserved.”

St Simon Stock

Students celebrate their results at St Simon Stock School. Picture: Andy Jones 15278721
Students celebrate their results at St Simon Stock School. Picture: Andy Jones 15278721

The school was once again been ranked in the top 10% nationally based on its A-level scores. One in five A-level entries achieved A* or A, and more than one in three entries achieved A* to B grades. In the school’s vocational courses, half of all entries achieved a Distinction* or a Distinction.

Eight students achieved three or more A-level grades A* or A. They included Libbie Raines, who has achieved a place at Exeter to study geography; Sergio Niblett-Morales who will study English at Queen Mary University; Freya Bailes, who has achieved a place at Durham University to study economics with management; Lois Buco, who will study law at the London School of Economics; Daniel Smith, who has achieved a place at Warwick University to study history; Emily-Rose Taylor, who will go to the University of Kent to study philosophy; Matthew Hartley who will go to the University of Surrey to study law; Lewis Holmes who will study history at the University of Sussex and Jack Pattinson, who achieved three A* grades, who will study engineering in the Royal Navy.

The academy principal, Jon Malone, said: “I am delighted for our students. These excellent results show what can be achieved when hard-working, ambitious students, with a ‘can do’ mindset, work closely with excellent teachers, who are specialists in their field. I know that our students will be thanking their teachers and support staff today, who have worked tirelessly to encourage and support their aspirations.

“In addition to thanking our staff, I would also like to thank our many parents and carers, who share our values and high expectations, and whose support from home will have been a crucial factor in their child’s success. At St Simon Stock Catholic School we strongly believe that our purpose is not solely to prepare students for academic success, but also to teach our students the wider qualities and values that they need in order to help tackle the challenges that our world faces. I am proud of each of our students for all that they have achieved, and I wish them the best as they move on, confident that they will serve the common good."

Sutton Valence School

Tiggy Teare, Nina Harman, Francis Romano, Olivia Ferris, Edward Curling at Sutton Valence School (15273990)
Tiggy Teare, Nina Harman, Francis Romano, Olivia Ferris, Edward Curling at Sutton Valence School (15273990)

It was another year-on-year increase in A* to B grades, with 60% of all grades within this threshold - a rise of 8% on the previous year’s results. There was also an almost three-fold increase in A*s, with 20% of pupils achieving three or more A* to A grades. A record-breaking 100% of students who completed the EPQ achieved A* to A grades.

Amongst the very good results, there were a number of exceptional performances including Francis Romano (three A*, one A, and one B grade), Kate Woodford and Yonglang Zhu (both achieving three A*s and one A grade). Francis is deferring entry until 2020 with a place at Edinburgh to read philosophy and theology and Kate will be heading to Exeter to read marketing and management.

Yonglang will be going to University College London (UCL), to read English. A further four students, Ellen Crombie, Olivia Ferris, Nina Harman and Olivia Smith, all achieved two A* and two A grades. Both Ellen and Nina will go to Edinburgh, Ellen to read maths and physics, while Nina will read English Literature. Olivia Ferris will be reading medicine at Bristol and Olivia Smith will go to Imperial College, London, also to read medicine.

Headmaster Bruce Grindlay said: “We are delighted by these superb results achieved by our students. The sustained pattern of annual increases in grades achieved is a testament to the sheer hard work and dedication of staff and pupils at Sutton Valence. We welcome a broad ability cohort to the school and are immensely proud to consistently add so much academic value to our students.”

Tonbridge School

Seven of the Tonbridge School boys who achieved a ‘clean sweep’ of top grades with James Priory, Headmaster (15280643)
Seven of the Tonbridge School boys who achieved a ‘clean sweep’ of top grades with James Priory, Headmaster (15280643)

This year saw 90% of grades being A*, A, B or their Pre-U equivalent. Nearly two thirds of all results were graded A*/A and 15 of the school’s Upper Sixth Formers achieved a 'clean sweep’ of A* or equivalent grades. The ‘average’ outcome for a Tonbridge leaver this year is AAA.

The Upper Sixth cohort at Tonbridge will now be taking up places at many of the UK’s leading universities, including Oxford, Cambridge, Imperial College, the London School of Economics, Edinburgh, Durham, Bath, Bristol, Manchester, York, Warwick, Leeds and Exeter. A significant number of boys have also chosen to study abroad, particularly in the US, and will be attending prestigious institutions such as the University of Pennsylvania, New York University, Rice University and the United States Air Force Academy.

Headmaster James Priory, said: “I offer my warmest congratulations to our students for working so hard and achieving such outstanding results. We are very proud of the contribution the boys have made to the intellectual, pastoral and co-curricular life of the school during their time here, and look forward now to following their progress at university and beyond.”

Tunbridge Wells Girls Grammar School

A total of 160 pupils took exams this year, with 95.7 % of grades being between A*-C and 18.2% being A*. Some 33 pupils had three As or better, with 34 attaining one A*, 11 with two A*s and eight with three.

Those eight were Georgia Casimir, Holly Challingsworth, Michaela Holding, Madeline Kirkpatrick, Anna Lumley, Hannah Roberts, Elena Trebino and Sophie Whitaker.

Head teacher Linda Wybar said: "We are exceptionally proud of our pupils who have achieved excellent results in a very challenging year.

"They have worked incredibly hard and fully deserve the tremendous grades they have attained."

Tunbridge Wells Grammar School for Boys

More than 95% of students will be taking up places at university in September, with an increasing number of those students going to Russell group universities. Other students have secured highly competitive apprenticeships in leading companies in the world of work.

Head teacher Amanda Simpson said: “We are delighted with the successes of our students in maintaining and building on our excellent standards, especially with more than half of our students achieving A*-B grades.

"We continue to focus on building our Sixth form and taking it from strength to strength and are extremely proud of the motivation and commitment of all staff and students. ”

Out-standing students included Ben Austin with A* grades in economics, mathematics, further mathematics and physics; George Parker-Rowe achieved A* grades in biology and physics and an A grade in maths.

Valley Park

Maria Simonova from Valley Park School(15283079)
Maria Simonova from Valley Park School(15283079)

Students and their parents are in celebratory spirits having received 87% of grades at C or above and a record 47% getting at least one A* or A. Three-quarters of vocational results were at Distinction or Distinction* and 83% of students are already in a position to take up their place at university. Against the national backdrop of more challenging and A-level qualifications there have been notable successes for individual students.

At A-level, high attainers were Maria Simonova with two A*s and an A, Kingsley Kingdon with three As, Akua Oppey with three As, Elizabeth Clack with an A*, A and a B, Jonathan Beale with two As and a B and Adam Tweedie with two As and B. In vocational subjects significant successes have been seen for Abbie Plaw with A*, ACC and Distinction*, Ashleigh Smith with three Distinction* and a C, Lizzie Westbroom with three Distinction* and a C, Tommie Collins with a Distinction* and three distinctions, Katie Beck with a A* a Distinction* and a Distinction, Georgia Wallace with a distinction*, a distinction and an A, Luke Hallford with a distinction* and two distinctions, Nathaniel Ashwood with a distinction*, two distinctions and a B and Alfie Crickmore with a distinction* and two distinctions.

Head teacher Margaret Hutchinson said: “At a time when A-level and vocational qualifications have become much more challenging nationally, it is a credit to the diligence of our students that they have achieved such success. It is always a pleasure to share results day with our young people and we wish them every success and happiness in the next stage of their lives. We are absolutely delighted that the students collecting their results today will be able to go on to bigger and better things. It’s absolutely lovely seeing the students daring to open their envelopes and to finally see the fruits of their labours paying off. We have had some tears and squeals of delight and some students being taken by surprise by what they have actually achieved so that is a very proud moment for all of us.”

Mia Evans from Valley Park School is going to the University of Kent after getting her A-level results(15287018)
Mia Evans from Valley Park School is going to the University of Kent after getting her A-level results(15287018)

Maria Simonova, 18, from Maidstone is off to UCA in Rochester to do an art foundation course and hopes to specialise in a specific medium before heading off to university.She said: “Well I was a bit shocked and very surprised by my biology result because the exam was very hard so I am very pleased. It was hard work especially art because it was coursework based and then I revised for my biology exam for a week or so because I had an art deadline at the same time and I started my first job.I don’t think I have ever been so busy in my whole life. It was all worth it though and that is what I kept telling myself throughout to keep me motivated and it has been.”

Ellen Gardiner, 18, from Maidstone achieved an A* in fine art, an A in photography and a distinction* in media. She is off to Edinburgh University to study art. She said: “It was terrifying I’m barely with it still. It was hard work and I just never left the school I was always in the art room or in the library but it was all worth it. I am just going to relax, take it all in because it doesn’t feel real just yet.”

Ellen Gardiner from Valley Park School is off to The University of Edinburgh with her A-level results (15287016)
Ellen Gardiner from Valley Park School is off to The University of Edinburgh with her A-level results (15287016)

Mia Evans, 18, from Maidstone bagged herself three Bs and is off to the University of Kent. She said: “I am really excited I was so scared to open them, it wasn’t overwhelming, I was just satisfied. I don’t have any plans for later I am just stunned I didn’t expect to do this well so I didn’t make any plans. I worked hard but I was out of school by 3pm every day.” Tommie Collins, 18, from Maidstone did Cambridge Technicals instead of A-levels. He achieved a double distinction, six distinctions and a merit. He is hoping to find an apprenticeship in mechanical engineering.

He said: “I’m celebrating by going out for a free Nando's and then going to the pub later. It was relieving and a nice feeling that my work was worthy of such good grades.” His girlfriend Casey Mccleave was there to support him and had picked up her results from Maidstone Grammar School for Girls earlier in the day. She achieved an A in sociology, a B in psychology and a distinction* in health and social care. She is off to Canterbury Christ Church University to study mental health nursing.

West Kent College

Emily Williams and Abi Taylor from West Kent College (15327657)
Emily Williams and Abi Taylor from West Kent College (15327657)

A total of 60 students sat A-Levels with an overall pass rate of 96%. The percentage of A*-C grades achieved was 61%, while the percentage of A*-B grades was up 3% on last year.

Sam Brown, who achieved an A, A and a C, said: “I’m really happy with my results. Although it has been stressful at times, the level of support I received from my tutors was never in question. "I’m going to study Aerospace Engineering at the University of Surrey. My dream job would be to work for Boeing.”

Friends Emily Williams and Abi Taylor were also thrilled with their results, achieving AAA and ABB, respectively. Emily said: “After starting A-Levels at school, I felt that it wasn’t for me. After researching the cllege, I decided it would be a better fit for me. It’s been great, I’ve had a huge amount of support, felt more of a sense of adult independence and the need to self-motivate has been beneficial to me.

“I’m going to study psychology at York, then I hope to study for a doctorate and become a forensic psychologist within the prison service.”

Abi will also be studying psychology, and is heading to Royal Holloway.

Kelly Bennett, head of A-Levels, said: “I am extremely pleased that we have achieved a set of results that have not only met, but also exceeded, the excellent results achieved last year in some areas.

"These results reflect the students’ hard work and also the high quality specialist teaching and support that has been provided; both our staff and students have risen to the increased challenge of the linear A-level examinations.We wish our students every success for the future.”

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