BST students have again produced outstanding results in the Sixth Form and at all the key stages in earlier years. Tests are taken in the Primary School at the end of Year 2 (age 6-7) and Year 6 (age 10-11). In the Secondary School, IGCSE exams are taken at the end of Year 11 (age 15-16) and Sixth Form students aged 16,17 and 18 take AS exams (Year 12) and A levels (Year 13) .
Our 2016 examination results demonstrate once again that this is a school with a sharp focus on excellence and a determined commitment to high quality teaching and learning. During the summer holidays our Year 13 students celebrated some impressive, hard-earned A level grades enabling the majority to take up places at the universities of their choice. This year’s candidates have every right to feel proud of their achievements: 42% of all entries were awarded A*/A grades and more than two thirds achieved grade B or better. These results are well above the UK national average (where just 26% of entries were awarded the top two grades) and compare favourably with our own three-year average scores – which may be found below.
It is especially encouraging to see our students continuing to win places on extremely competitive degree courses at prestigious UK Russell Group universities, including Edinburgh, LSE and UCL. Emphasising the balanced nature of our curriculum, this year’s course options range from Architecture to Criminology, Fine Art to Neuroscience, and from Advanced Mathematics to Politics and Economics. In keeping with our international outlook, BST students have also won places at universities in Australia, Finland and New Zealand and, closer to home, at Todai (Tokyo University) and Waseda.
Although they still have another year of focused study ahead of them, the promising performance of our Year 12 students in their AS Levels was equally pleasing. There is certainly no room for complacency, but if they determine to do so, all the indications are that this hard-working year group can shine in 2017.
Year 11 GCSE and IGCSE results were every bit as praiseworthy as those of their seniors. A*/A grades accounted for 61% of all entries (up from 57% last year) and there were some real pockets of excellence. For example, out of a total of 18 candidates sitting French and Spanish, 15 students were awarded those top two grades while no fewer than 22 A* results were shared between Biology, Chemistry and Physics. It was especially pleasing to see the enthusiasm of those studying more practical subjects – Art, Drama, Music, PE and Photography – being rewarded with an A*/A pass rate of no less than 80%.
While the successes of our top performers are gratifying, it is even more pleasing to see students who have had to work very hard to cope with the demands of public examinations, achieving results better than even they might have expected. There are certainly times when a B or even a C offers just as much cause for celebration as an A*.
Most of these successful Secondary School examination candidates are, of course, indebted to the teachers who gave them such a good start in the Primary School. In the summer term, 65 pupils in Year 6 participated in the new-style KS2 SATs assessments for English and Mathematics. These assessments reflected significant changes to the National Curriculum and are now far more rigorous and robust than previous years. Scoring well above the national average, 91% (70% NA) of pupils met the expected standard in Mathematics, while 89% (72% NA) met the standard in GPS (grammar, punctuation and spelling) and 86% (66% NA) reached the required level in reading.
These outstanding results represent a fitting reward for an ambitious, hard-working group of pupils and for their caring and committed teachers.