It's the day thousands of students have been looking forward to, and thousands more have been dreading - GCSE results day.
Teenagers from across west Kent have been arriving at their schools this morning to find out how they've performed in recent exams.
Below, we take a look at how they got on.
Oakwood Park Grammar School
Just under half the year group gained the top grades of 7 to 9 in five or more of their GCSE subjects at Oakwood Park. Stand out performances came from Max Fossett, James Godsmark and Daniel Shed who achieved Grade 9 in six or more of their subjects. A host of other students also excelled across the curriculum, by gaining ten or more grades at 7 to 9. Headteacher, Kevin Moody said: “I am delighted for our hardworking students ably supported by their parents and our staff who have managed the significant changes in examinations magnificently.”
Maidstone Grammar School
At MGS, 37% of all subject entries were graded at 7,8 or 9 - the equivalent of the old grades A and A*. Nearly all (98%) of students gained five 9 to 4 grades (equivalent to A* to C). Some 38% gained five or more 7+/A/A* grades and 27% achieved three or more 8+/A* grades. Headmaster Mark Tomkins said: “The students have performed well and have gained a solid foundation on which to build their future studies. We are immensely proud of their achievements, which is the result of a combination of hard work by the students and dedicated teaching by the staff, particularly at a time with changes to the assessment arrangements and curriculum specifications.”
St Augustine Academy
Around half of this year’s cohort achieved a standard pass or above in English and maths, while the school’s highest scoring students were Phoebe Ponton, whose results included two Grade 9s and two Grade 7s, and Jack Malone who achieved two 8s and five 7s. Vice Principal Paul Brown said: “We’re always delighted to see that students’ hard work has paid off and that they can go on, well prepared, into the next stage of their education. A big thank you is also due to the hard work and support from all our staff, especially with a new system of grading this year, to ensure that students have gained the qualifications to enable them to take up their places in local sixth-forms and colleges as well as go on to apprenticeships.”
The Lenham School
Passes in both English and Maths were up to 51% of students this year - an eight point increase on the comparable figure from 2017. Notable high achievers included Kayleigh Snelling, Lawrence Bordean, Ben Patten, Jodie Cain and Eleanor Butcher who all gained grades above the ‘higher pass’ in both subjects. Head of school Chris Foreman said: “Almost all subjects are now reporting on the new 1 to 9 grading system, in the new, more challenging form of GCSE. These have more difficult content and are mostly marked on final exams, rather than coursework. As such, an increase in our own pass rate to 51% represents significant achievement for our students and their families.”
St Simon Stock
Students achieved a total of 291 top grades (grades 9-7, equivalent to the old A, A* and higher), which is more than one in five of all the grades that were awarded. Four out of five students achieved grade 4 or higher in English, two-thirds of all students achieved grade 4 or higher in Maths, and average progress in both these core subjects was higher than national expectations. Well over half the students achieved a strong pass (9-5) in English. Students made excellent progress in English Baccalaureate subjects, achieving average grades that are significantly higher than national expectations in Computer Science (two or more grades higher), Science and History (one or more grade. higher), and French, a subject that faces national challenges (more than half a grade higher). Twenty-six students achieved an average of grade 7 or higher in all their subjects, but special congratulations go to Daniel Clayton (eight grades 9-8, including seven grade 9s), Lucy Dowd (nine grades 9-8) and Stevie Jackson (seven grades 9-8). Also deserving special mention are Dominic Turner, Nicola Osborne and Offiong Bassey, who each achieved on average three or more grades higher than government expectations across all their GCSEs. Academy principal Jon Malone said: “I warmly congratulate our students on achieving magnificent results. This year’s Year 11 have once again made progress that exceeds national expectations, in many instances significantly so. This is the first year in which the majority of GCSE subjects have been examined through reformed, much more knowledge-driven and content-heavy specifications. The grades that our students have achieved at all levels recognise not just their academic ability, but also their wider attributes of courage, resilience, grit and determination."
The Maplesden Noakes School
An impressive 63% of students achieved Grade 4 or above (A*-C) in English this year, with a total of 66% getting those grades in Maths and 67% achieving at least one Grade 4 or above in Science. Some of the standout performers included Dayna Chalklen, Mafalda Horta, Charlotte Crouch, Macey Willard, Kian Rogers, Gabby Fielder, Chloe Sherry and Doris Fong.
Invicta Grammar School
Almost two-thirds of all grades this year were 7 to 9 or A/A*, with 100% of Year 11 students achieving the benchmark of five grades at A*-C and 4 to 9 including English and Maths. Kirsten Eke, Mia Harris Smith, Madeleine Hill, Emma Marchong, Elizabeth Morgan, Eleanor Newman, Ellie Nguyen, Amy Thornton and Aimee Ward all boasted nine or more top grades. Headteacher Julie Derrick said: “We are exceptionally proud of our students and staff. The examination results are testament to their dedication and commitment in a time when we have a great deal of changes in educational reform, with moving grade boundaries and substantially more rigour in the content of all subjects.”
Results were on the rise again this year as 50% of students achieved a Grade 4 or above in both English and Mathematics - a considerable 8% increase on 2017. There was also a 12% increase in those achieving five 9 to 5 grades including English and Mathematics. Among the notable achievers were Michael Richards, Megan Murrock, Bethany Jeffery, Neve Brough and Teresa Griffiths. Headteacher Isabelle Linney-Drouet said: “I am absolutely delighted with this outstanding set of results. I would like to congratulate all students. Their results are a testament to their dedication and commitment in a time when we have substantial changes in educational reform.”
New Line Learning Academy
Staff and students last week celebrated the school’s best ever GCSE results, with 47% of students achieving a grade 4-9 in English Language and 59% doing the same in English Literature. The school’s top achiever was Lucy-Ann Wright, whose results included a Grade 9 in English Language and Grade 8 in English Literature. Headteacher Paul Murphy said: “The students who joined us in September 2013 can be extremely proud of their results today which highlight their hard work and determination to succeed.This year’s results build on the excellent outcomes achieved last year and demonstrate the excellent progress that our students continue to make within the academy.”
Maidstone Grammar School for Girls
Head teacher, Deborah Stanley, said: "We are extremely pleased to be celebrating the fantastic achievements of our Year 11 students. Our girls have risen to the increased challenge of the new GCSE specifications and have been very successful. We are very proud of their achievements and look forward to the next stage of their education at MGGS.” Some 56% of all students at MGGS achieved five or more 9-7 (A/A*) grades, with 33 students achieving 10 or more 9-7 grades. Over 10% of grades on the new specifications were grade 9. One girl, Rashmi Knight, achieved grade 9 in all of her eleven subjects.
Sutton Valence School
Almost one-fifth of the year group achieved seven or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 7, with an impressive 10% of all grades at 9, compared to just 4% nationally. In total, 21% of GCSE results achieved this year at Sutton Valence were graded 9 or 8, with Lara Savage, who attained ten grade 9s, among the top performers. Headmaster Bruce Grindlay said: “As the new GCSE grading system makes the very highest grades ever more elusive, our pupils have recorded a remarkable level of achievement. Through individual hard work and exemplary teaching, this year’s GCSE pupils are justifiably proud of their examination results. They can look forward to considerable future success as they embark on the next step of their education.”
Headteacher Vic Ashdown said: “It’s been a tough year for staff, students and their families. We’re delighted that in the second year of reforms we’ve got a record number of grades at what used to be C but is now a 4 - 64%, up 7% on last year and a record for the school. We’re delighted at our high achievers, 12% received what used to A or A*s but is now called 7 and above, which is fantastic for a high school. We’re going through a transition, all schools are, it’s a big ask on students who’ve got no past papers and may see themselves as guinea pigs in a new process. I’m just thrilled for them because no one wanted to be in their position and they’ve come out with record results.”
The Judd School
More than half of all entries were graded A*, 8 or 9 at the Judd for a record fifth year in succession. In another impressive set of results, 99% of students achieved a ‘strong pass’ (grade 5 or higher) in English and Maths and more than three-quarters enjoyed strong passes across the English Baccalaureate subjects. Felix Baker, Aidan Birdi, Noah Bradley, Isaac Holloway and Matthew Politz all managed a 9 or A* in all of their subjects. Headteacher Jon Wood said: “With the new GCSEs across the piece and our first five form entry year group, we were anxious about today’s results. They are, delightfully, further testament to the hard work from students, teachers, support staff and parents alike and have exceeded our expectations."
In the four subjects that were graded 1-9 (English, Maths, Latin and Greek), more than half of the grades received were a 9. Some 92% of the exams taken by the 150 candidates were awarded A* or A grades (9 to 7 equivalent), with 122 students (over 81%) gaining nine or more A* or A grades (9 to 7 equivalent). Head, Dr Katy Ricks, said: “These results are excellent, and a superb achievement for both students and teachers. We are delighted that our students start the IB Diploma Programme with such strong qualifications.”
The Hayesbrook School, Tonbridge
An impressive 50% of curriculum subjects have improved achievement this year, with Biology, Chemistry, Modern Foreign Languages and Computer Science being subjects where pupils particularly impressed. The percentage of total ‘highest’ grades (5-9 or A*-B) has also increased to 42% - representing a two year upward trend. Meanwhile, Ross Bray, Tom Gammon, George Hines, Oliver Holloway, Jack Howell, Samuel Morton and Toby Moss all received top grades in five or more of their subjects. Principal Daniel Hatley said: “The change in the landscape, this year with the first set of results in the reformed GCSEs makes our students’ achievements even more impressive. The new assessment framework means that many students will have sat in excess of 25 papers all of which require them to demonstrate even greater competence and an increased depth of understanding, than in previous years.”
The school registered its second highest performance ever this year, with students achieving 91% A*/A grades or equivalent. Sixty-five boys have each been awarded at least nine A*s or equivalent grades, a record for the school; and for the fourth year in succession, the average award for a Tonbridge boy is 7 A*s and 3 As. The school’s new headmaster, James Priory, said: “Well done to the boys for a terrific set of results. I look forward to getting to know the boys, and their parents, as they move up into the Sixth Form. It is exciting to consider their potential, having seen such excellent results today.”
Tonbridge Grammar School
In another impressive year, four students achieved the top grade in all of their GCSE subjects and 17 students achieved grade 8+ across the board. Subject results show 39 students achieving grade 9 (22.5%) in Mathematics and 45 pupils (26%) in English (Language or Literature); 18 students (10.4%) achieved a grade 9 in both subjects. Headteacher Rosemary Joyce said: “I am absolutely delighted with their achievements and send my warmest congratulations to every one of them. Undoubtedly the introduction of the reformed GCSEs has raised the academic bar and it fantastic to see the success of our students.”
Kent College Pembury
Nearly half of girls achieved an average grade of A*, A, or equivalent in all of their subjects this year, with an impressive 27% of grades recorded as the coveted Level 9. Particular congratulations to Jasmine Murray who will be studying Maths, Biology, English and Psychology at A-Level after achieving the equivalent of 8A* and 2 As. She said: “I am overjoyed with my results. The encouragement and care from everyone at Kent College has been second to none. They really are the nicest people around to nurture you through your exam years.”Headmistress Julie Lodrick added: “I am delighted with the results, especially in light of the new reformed exams. The girls should be very proud of their individual achievements which are testament to their hard work and dedication.”
Tunbridge Wells Girls Grammar School
With an impressive 98.7% rate of grades between 9 and 4 or A* and C, it was another strong years for the school, with one pupil gaining a full sweep of 9 and A* grades. Of the 144 in total that sat exams, 25 pupils attained all grade 9-7/A*-A, 82 pupils attained at least one Grade 9, 42 attained three or more 9 grades, and 26 pupils attained five or more 9 grades. Assistant head Richard Smith said: “We are ecstatic with the performance of our pupils and how they have risen to the demands of the new, challenging 9-1 GCSEs. We hope the pupils are as proud of themselves as we are of them.”
Broomhill Bank School
It was a record-breaking year for the special school, which made a total of 138 entries at GCSE this summer with students from Years 10 to 14 sitting examinations, many for the first time ever. The school, for autistic students with communication and interaction difficulties, is celebrating a pass rate of 94.2% with some achieving results as high as Grade 8. Executive head Steve Ackerley said: “We are extremely proud of our students’ achievements in so many ways every single day, but this is especially pleasing. For students with significant needs and in many cases extreme anxiety, public examinations represent a huge barrier to overcome. Our students have done enormously well not only to cope with the rigours of their courses but also to face the challenge of an examination system which does not favour them. They have done incredibly well and everyone at the school is thrilled with their achievements."
High Weald Academy, Cranbrook
Among this year’s high performers were Kirsty Waters and Freddie Todd, who both achieved an impressive portfolio of grades. Kirsty was awarded a grade 8 in maths and a grade 8 and 9 in the combined sciences, and said: “They say that you get out what you put in. I certainly put in the hours of work and it’s paid off, as my results show.” Freddie gained a grade 8 in maths and two grade 9s in the combined sciences, adding: “Coming from a comprehensive school, I never thought that I would achieve what I have, but the determination of the teachers pushed me on the path to success. I do not regret my choice of secondary school at all”.
Weald of Kent Grammar
Bethany School Goudhurst
A number of pupils achieved an impressive five or more 7-9 grades this year, including Tais Amos, Jack Brown, Jeremy Daubeney, Audrey George, Marcus Hobson, Rowan Parker-Renwick, Alexia Pickett, Maia Saad and Amelia Topper. Headmaster, Francie Healy, said: “This is an exceptional set of results given the continually changing educational landscape. They demonstrate that at Bethany School, placing the focus on pupil wellbeing – combined with academic challenge and ambition – provides the best possible preparation for examination success. I offer my warmest congratulations to our successful Year 11 pupils and our most supportive parents.”
More than half of pupils at Cranbrook achieved top grades of 7-9, with 97% getting Grade 4 or above.The Attainment 8 score for the school is 68, just short of an A grade in the old currency. Seventeen students altogether achieved 90+ points from 10-12 subjects. Some of the best performing subjects included Physics, Latin, French and Chemistry which achieved 78%, 70%, 67% and 61% levels 7-9 respectively.
Mascalls Academy, Paddock Wood
Skinners School, Tunbridge Wells
Nearly a third of all results at Benenden were awarded the coveted Level 9 grade, while 57% of all grades were at A* of Level 8 or above and three girls achieved a clean sweep of Level 9s and A* grades. Headmistress Samantha Price said: “We are incredibly proud of the girls’ outstanding results, especially in a year when the exams were tougher than ever. The pupils’ hard work, positive attitude and dedication have paid off wonderfully and my thanks go to the dedicated Benenden staff who have worked so hard to enable them to achieve these outcomes.”