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Thousands of students collect GCSE results

Chloe Orrin smiles as she checks her GCSE results at Ffynone House school. Photo credit: Matthew Horwood

For this class of 2020, picking up their GCSE results occurred with strict social distancing measures in place, a very different experience to the hustle and bustle of the usual GCSE results day.

A government-backed algorithm used to award grades has been withdrawn after thousands of A level students were downgraded to the predicted grades given by teachers.

This morning Education Minister, Kirsty Williams, released a statement and said:

“I want to send my very best wishes to everyone who receives their results today.

“Due to the many changes we’ve had to make this year in exceptional circumstances, you’ve had to make many sacrifices.

“It has been a year like no other, and today will feel a bit different.

“These results are a reflection and reward for your hard work, prior attainment in exams, and school assessment, so you should be very proud of what you have achieved.

“I hope you get the grades you’d hoped for, and you can continue with your journey in the autumn, whether this is onto college, apprenticeship or staying on at school.

“Although many of you will be pleased with your results and excited for your next step, if you didn’t get what you’d hoped, there’s plenty of options & advice on Working Wales.

“Best of luck, and best wishes for the future.”

Pupils at St Illtyds Catholic High School in Rumney is celebrating yet another year of improvements in its results as the school continues to grow and improve its performance in all indicators.

Headteacher, David Thomas, said:

“We are delighted with and are celebrating the results our pupils achieved today. To say it has been a tough year for all concerned is an understatement but now that common sense has prevailed the pupils have emerged with the results that they deserve and we are so pleased for them and their families. They are more than ready for the opportunities that now lie ahead of them.

“There have been some outstanding individual results and it is a credit to the pupils and their parents for all their hard work and support.

“There has also been some strong performances and improvements at department level and I am pleased that the hard work and dedication of all the staff at St Illtyds has had an impact on the young people in our care.

“Some outstanding individual results of at least 10 GCSE`S at A*/A were achieved by Thomas Hawkey, Hannah Robins, Dan Perrett, Alana Green, Laura Viggers, Matthew Guo, Olivia Szymanska and Holly Tee who achieved 15 A or A* grades.

“We congratulate all our pupils on their successes across the board and we wish all of them success in the next stages of their lives.”

Congratulations to all Mary Immaculate High School pupils today on receiving their GCSE results.  Headteacher, Huw Powell said:

“We are very proud of our pupils in what has been an extremely difficult time.  It was fantastic to see them all again today and be able to celebrate with them.  I am full of admiration for the resilience they have shown.  We have an exceptional team of dedicated staff who are passionate about what they do and provide outstanding care, support and guidance to our students.

“Despite the Coronavirus impacting upon lessons, learners were able to complete their studies in lockdown thanks to the actions of caring staff using innovative technology, video conferencing and online platforms.” 

Some exceptional performances this year included Ella Curtis and Georgia Wilson both of whom achieved an exceptional 11 A or A* grades.

Both intend to go on and study Higher Education at St David’s College and Cardiff and the Vale College.  Head Girl Ella Curtis said, ‘I would like to thank all of the staff at Mary Immaculate for all of their help and support that they have given us and their never ending efforts to help us succeed’.  Other notable performances included Louie Cardinale and Zia Vella who achieved over 7 A or A* grades.  In the last Inspection, Mary Immaculate received an excellent inspection report with ESTYN commenting on the exceptional progress made and the clear and persistent focus on pupil achievement.  The school was also recognised as a centre of excellence and has supported other schools locally and regionally in teaching, learning and leadership.

Headteacher, Huw Powell went to say “However, today we need to focus entirely on our wonderful young people who have done themselves proud.  I would also like to thank all the teachers, parents and carers for their support.  Finally, we wish all our students every success in the future and look forward to tracking their achievement through Post 16 education, further study and their future careers.“

For Archbishop McGrath Catholic High School, it was a day of celebration and also regret that students couldn’t celebrate their exam results in the usual way.

Raising Standards Leader, Mrs Farrow, who has tracked the learners’ progress summed it up, “In such difficult times for all learners, the commitment from year 11 has been exceptional; they are still striving for their best. I wish them the best of luck in their future pathways.“

Mr Davies, Assistant Headteacher feels “this year’s theme for Year 11 was ‘I can, I will, Watch me’. With the recent circumstances, it was hard to maintain their belief that they could achieve their potential; I’m delighted to say they did. Well done Year 11 – you have made us proud. ” Miss Clegg, Deputy Headteacher, said “These pupils have been an inspiration. I know they have very bright futures ahead of them.”

Pupils are “extremely happy with [their] grades” and “looking forward to starting A Levels in September”; they are “thankful that they have achieved the results they need to go on to study their chosen courses.”