By: Lauren Codling
STUDENTS have celebrated the release of their GCSE results on Thursday (12) after a second year of cancelled exams due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Alike to A-Level results on Tuesday (10), teachers submitted grades for pupils using their mock exams and coursework as estimates.
According to data, top grades (7/As and above) rose to 28.9 per cent from 26.2 per cent last year. Pass grades 4/Cs and above increased to 77.1 per cent up from 76.3 per cent.
In north London, Alperton Community School student Deepti Pindolia said she was “very happy” with her scores. The 16-year-old achieved all top 9 grades and one grade 8 in art. “I expected to get a high score for some, but not all,” she revealed.
Pindolia admitted the disruptions due to the pandemic had been “stressful” for her and others. “But once we got back to school, the teachers were great,” she said. “They went over anything we felt we’d missed.”
More than 100 Alperton students achieved the top grades (9-7) in English and maths, the school said.
Also in north London, Year 11 pupils at Queen Elizabeth’s School (QE) celebrated a strong set of results. More than 19 out of every 20 grades were awarded at 9–7 and 85 per cent at 9-8.
Headmaster Neil Enright said: “(Students) have shown great dedication, resilience and positivity, evincing a mature and considered approach to their studies and to the situation they have found themselves in. They and their families should take pride in all they have achieved.”
In Birmingham, Mahin Ashraf voiced his delight over his top grades. The Eden Boys’ School student achieved grade 9 in seven subjects. He will go on to study A levels in computing, economics, and maths at King Edward VI Aston Grammar School.
Ashraf, who was appointed Head Boy in Year 11, said: “I’ve worked really hard for these grades over the last few years, and I’m so glad that my hard work has been recognised.”
Asiyah Ravat, executive principal at Eden Boys’ School said students worked tremendously well during a period of exceptional challenge. “This year, our pupils have had to work incredibly hard to overcome significant challenges to their education,” she said. “Their perseverance and ability to continue to perform so well, in spite of these challenges, is a real testimony to their strength of character.”
Also in Birmingham, numerous students from the Starbank School secured top grades.
The school’s highest achieving pupils who are celebrating exceptional sets of GCSE results includes Hafsa Anwar (four grade 9s and four grade 8s), Nuha Taiba (two grade 9s, four grade 8s and two grade 7s), Sabah Jussain (one grade 9, one grade 8 and six grade 7s), Sidrah Choudhury (three grade 9s, three grade 8s and one grade 7) and Zain Zakria (two grade 9s, three grade 8s and three grade 7s).
Principal Gaetano Ferrante said he was “very proud” of the 2021 cohort of GCSE pupils. He said: “I am immensely proud of all our pupils and staff who have all worked so very hard throughout the pandemic. Despite the incredible challenges this year has presented, our pupils have achieved incredible results.”
In Blackburn with Darwen, 87 per cent of students from the Tauheedul Islam Boys’ High School (TIBHS) achieved a ‘strong pass’ in GCSE English and Maths. 93 per cent of students achieved a ‘standard pass’ in GCSE English and Maths, the school said.
Zubair Ahmed achieved the top grade 9 in ten subjects. He is hoping to pursue a career in medicine. “All the teachers and support staff have helped me so much,” he said. “I’m so grateful to everyone who has helped me to achieve these grades and for helping me to grow into the person I am today.”
In response to the release of GCSE results, education secretary Gavin Williamson praised students for their achievements. He also thanked teachers and school leaders for their “work to ensure students get the grades they deserve and need to progress to the next stage of their lives.”