Results: Bury & West Suffolk

STUDENTS in Bury St Edmunds and across West Suffolk have been opening their all-important results this morning - and for most it will be a day of celebration, with school's reporting another record year.

STUDENTS in Bury St Edmunds and across West Suffolk have been opening their all-important results this morning - and for most it will be a day of celebration, with school's reporting another record year.

- County Upper School in Bury St Edmunds achieved pass rates at A-C of 89% and A-E of 99.5%.

Headteacher Vicky Neale said: “With 38% of all grades at A and 89% at grades A-C, these are record results at all levels and most importantly today the overwhelming majority of young people are going on to their chosen university.

“I congratulate the students and staff on a fantastic set of results.”

- At King Edward VI Upper School, also in Bury St Edmunds they scored pass rates at A-C of 80% and of A-E 99.5%.

Headteacher Geoff Barton said: “We're delighted that the nail-biting wait for students and their parents has resulted in such a strong set of results. Well done to all our students.”

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- At Sudbury Upper School 80 students who sat A-levels this year achieved pass rates at A-C of 65% and 93% at A-E.

David Forrest, the headteacher, said the students had done really well, achieving slightly above the previous year.

“As always I am dead proud that the students have achieved as much as they have. It is the fruit of five years of hard work from them and their teachers.”

- Jackie Walters, head of sixth form at Samuel Ward Arts and Technology College in Haverhill, said they scored a pass rate of 81% at grades A-C and 100% at A-E.

She added: “With a 100% pass rate students are once again extremely pleased with their results. Every student has got their place at university.”

- At St Benedict's School in Bury, they achieved pass rates at A-C of 87% and the full 100% at A-E.

Delighted headteacher Hugh O'Neill, who has recently taken over from the retiring Paul Rossi, said: “These truly exceptional results are a credit to everyone involved.

“First and foremost, they reflect the dedication and hard work of a fine group of students.

“They would be the first to acknowledge that they have achieved success through the excellence of the teaching and support they have received from all the staff here at St Benedict's.”

- Thetford Grammar School, meanwhile, matched St Benedict's figures.

- Thomas Paine Sixth Form in Thetford scored a pass rate at A-C of 90% and an A-E rate of 97%

“It is really good news and more and more are getting higher grades. Every year we have seen an improvement and have continued this year. More students are wanting to stay on.” said the director of sixth form Carolyn Dunn.

- Great Cornard Upper School enjoyed an A-C pass rate of 75% and A-E of 100%

Headteacher Mike Foley said: “The pass marks are slightly up on last year and we are delighted with the results.”

But he denied the high pass rates are a sign the exams have got easier.

He said: “Today's A Levels are modular, so pupils are tracked all the way through and we have a very good idea whether they are ready for exams or not.

“We meet every six week to review each pupil's progress. This differs from the time when I was in the sixth form and no one really knew how you were getting on until the exam s at the end of two years.

“For those pupils who failed it turned out to be two years wasted.

“The people who say exams have got easier have no understanding of the system. Pass rates are up, sure - but remember this is the most tested generation ever.

“Traditionally, pupils took exams aged 16 and 18, but today they start being tested at age 7. When I passed my history A level I took two, three-hour papers. Today a pupil would have to take at least six exams.

“To say they haven't done as well as people in the past is an ignorant view and does our young people a disservice.

“For our sixth form pupils this isn't the end but a stepping stone onto further education or into work and training. Nearly all our pupils who were planning to go into further education got the marks they require and we wish them all the best.”

- Culford School achieved an A-C pass rate of 90% and an A-E rate of 98.8%.

Dr John Guntrip, director of studies at Culford School near Bury, said: “Yet again we have a record set of results, which are a real testament to the dedication and hard work of teachers and pupils alike.

“We are particularly pleased with the percentage of top grades, with a significant number of pupils obtaining suites of A or B grades.”

- Mildenhall College of Technology celebrated record results for points per entry and per student, along with an A-E pass rate of 97% and an A-C score of 52%.

Headteacher Terry Lewis, who is retiring this year, said he was thrilled that the school achieved such superb results with his final A-level group and stressed that the success reflected “tremendous hard work by students and staff.”

He added that “parents should feel extremely proud of their children.”

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