Results: Ipswich & East Suffolk

FOR thousands of anxious students, the weeks of worry and waiting are over - and today they are heading back to school to collect their results.

RECORD breaking students across the county are today celebrating after a bumper year for A-level results.

Many schools and colleges were reporting high levels of success with some achieving more than four A-grades.

At Farlingaye High School in Woodbridge, twins Ed and CJ Millar gained nine A grades between them, and other star students included Lydia Sergeant and Barnaby Roberts, who both achieved five A grades.

And at Westbourne Sports College, outstanding pupil Simon Parker achieved five A-level passes in one year including two As and two Bs.

He said: “It feels brilliant. I'm a little bit lost for words. I've got into UEA to do history and I'm looking forward to having three years of fun and maybe becoming a teacher after that.”

Experts have been forecasting it will be tougher than ever this summer, with the recession meaning more youngsters opting for further education rather than seeking work - with even more chasing places at college.

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Getting the grades requested when offered a place was the only sure way to guarantee a spot on a degree course.

- While county council officials were waiting for feedback from schools, Northgate High in Ipswich was one of the first to announce its success - with record A-level results for its 250 sixth form students.

Students achieved an average of 895 points each, the equivalent of each gaining more than three A grades at A-level.

A new benchmark was also set as 83 per cent of all grades achieved were between A and C, with 59pc at A or B; reflecting the effort and preparation both students and staff made during the two year courses. The overall pass rate was 98.4pc.

Neil Watts, Northgate's outgoing headteacher, was delighted and felt the sixth form would continue its outstanding progress.

“Northgate has a very strong team which is constantly looking for ways to improve and every year the results reflect this,” he said.

David Hutton, acting head from September, added: “This is a continuing upward trend as a consequence of the hard work and dedication of students and staff.

“I would like to congratulate the students on the excellence of these results and wish them all the best for the future.”

- Felixstowe Sixth Form - a joint venture between Deben and Orwell high schools - saw 91 students achieve a 100pc pass rate, with 68pc of grades at A-C and 50pc at A and B. The average point score per student was 702.

Screams of delight pierced the air at Orwell High as students celebrated their successes.

Sinead Crossley, 18, was thrilled with her four A grades in geography, maths, biology and critical thinking and is now off to Birmingham University to do a degree in geography.

She said: “I thought I had done really badly in the exams so I am quite happy to say the least - I have no idea what career I want to do and I'll just see what happens at university.”

Joe Watts, 18, said his three A grades in biology, chemistry and maths were better than he had expected - he will be studying chemistry at Southampton.

“Hopefully I will decide what sort of career I should follow while I am there and will probably specialise,” he said.

Laura Fisher's two As in biology and chemistry and B in history were exactly the grades she needed to take up her place to read medicine at University College London, where she will also do a combined science degree.

“It's a six-year course in all and will be a huge amount of work, very tough and challenging. I have wanted to do medicine since I was 14 and I am really looking forward to it. We will be going out celebrating tonight,” she said.

- Deben High headteacher Rob Cawley said: “A fantastic effort by all students and staff across Felixstowe Sixth Form has led to an incredibly impressive set of results.

“I am so proud of all students on their achievements and I wish our departing Year 13s all the best for their future studies.”

- Orwell High head Peter Tomkins said: “These are fantastic results and demonstrate just what the hard work and dedication of both students and teachers can achieve.

“I am sure all students will join me in thanking their teachers for all their hard work and inspiration. These students have achieved brilliantly well.”

- Success was also being celebrated at Ipswich 6th Form Academy at Suffolk New College.

Marilyn Watsham, deputy principal, said: “I'm delighted with the A-level results from the Ipswich 6th Form Academy. Yet again, the hard work of both students and staff has produced excellent results.

“The majority of the full A-level subjects have 100pc pass rates and over half of the students have scored top grades in their subjects.”

- Ipswich High School for Girls was also delighted with its A-level results - for the third consecutive year the A and B pass rate topped 80pc and the overall pass rate for A-E was 100pc.

Headteacher Elaine Purves said: “It is a real reflection of the hard work and determination that the girls have shown throughout their studies, the inspiration given by our teaching staff and support from their parents.”

- Copleston High School in Ipswich reported its best A level results for three years.

As students arrived to collect their envelopes, headteacher Shaun Common said: “We have achieved an increase in our overall A-C percentage pass rate giving us the best results in the last three years.

“We have a significant increase in the number of students achieving good grades, including three students each with four grade As.

“Twenty per cent of our grades were at grade A and 43pc of our grades were either A or B.

“Our congratulations to all students and their families.”

- Farlingaye High School in Woodbridge was today celebrating its best ever A level results.

The school's 178 students gained 38 per cent of grades at grade A - by far the best the school has ever achieved - with 60pc at A and B, and 83pc A-C. The overall pass rate was 99.5pc.

Headteacher Sue Hargadon said an astonishing 20pc of students achieved at least four A grades.

“We have never before had such high numbers achieve at this level,” she said.

“This is a real tribute to the hard work by a fabulous group of students and the support they were given by their staff and parents.

“Five students have places at Cambridge and Oxford and four have places to read medicine.”

- It was also a record-breaking year at St Alban's Catholic High School. Headteacher Dennis McGarry said the results overall are the best the school has achieved to date with 78.4 pc of grades in the A - C range and a 99.4pc A-E pass rate.

Mr McGarry said: "I am so pleased that the hard work of all our students and staff has paid off. In a year when there is concern about university places the majority of our students can look forward to next year with confidence.

“There has also been a significant increase in our point scores and the school will compare well against the performance of other schools. This all reflects positively on the efforts of everybody".

- Kesgrave High School was enjoying great results in English Language and Literature with 60 per cent of pupils gaining A and B grades.

Even though 69 per cent of children gained A to Cs in all subjects and 98pc A to E, headteacher Nigel Burgoyne feared some could still miss out on university this year because of intense competition.

He said: “Most will get their university of choice, but there may be some talented youngsters who just miss out by a grade or two and then don't get a place through clearing.

“This year, there are around 60,000 extra applications and only 10,000 more places. There is national pressure to get pupils into university, but there is a shortfall.”

- Chantry High School were celebrating after more than 90 per cent of pupils gained their university place of choice.

Headteacher Andrew Fell said: “In the current climate this is a high success rate. We are delighted with our results, they are broadly in line with last year and represent a great achievement for the students.

“Almost all pupils met their expected grades while some exceeded them including James Dorling who achieved straight As. The results will enable our students to go on to higher education many to top universities, 94 per cent have gained their place of choice.”

Rebecca Kingham, 18, of Copdock gained two Bs and a C at Chantry High - despite missing many months at school with illness.

She said: “I am really pleased because I had so much time off school.. I didn't think I would do very well because I had a problem with headaches which got me really down.

“But I tried really had with the exams and it has paid off.”

Rebecca plans to train as a midwife and in the meantime is due to start work in the blood department of Ipswich Hospital.

- At Westbourne Sports College they were celebrating another year of excellent results with more than half the students achieving top grades of A or B in their results, 89 pc of students achieving grades A- E and 57pc achieving grades A-C.

The results were the best for the last three years and showed the continuing upward trend in the college's exam performance.

Headteacher Chris Edwards said: “We are very pleased with our A-level results this year.

“They are a reflection of the hard work of students and staff and are all well-deserved.”

Outstanding results were achieved in business studies, with nearly 85pc of the results at A-grade. In Media studies with 80 pc at A or B grades and health and social care where four students achieved double As.

- At Claydon and Thurleston Sixth Form, 66 per cent of students achieved A-C grades and 97 per cent achieved grades A- E.

Head Beth Soule said she was very pleased with the pass rate and praised the students for their hard work, especially those who had to balance their studies with part-time jobs.

She said: “In the current financial climate a lot of our youngsters, to be able to carry on at A-level, need to be taking on part-time jobs.

“We're really pleased they have done extremely well and I'm very chuffed with the team that has kept track of every child.”

- Sian Grant, principal of St Joseph's College in Ipswich, said pass rates had increased to more than 98% and average points score per pupil had also improved.

“The college continues to produce outstanding performance at all levels of study and remains a school that is really going places,” she said.