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Strong Position in Performance Tables

The Government’s Examination Performance Tables were published this week and again the pupils of the Endowed Schools make a strong showing. For the High School all 84 girls in Year 11 gained the Government’s benchmark of 5 or more GCSEs at A* to C including English and Maths and at Stamford School 92 of the 97 boys reached this standard.

Somewhat late in the day the new Government has introduced the English Baccalaureate which requires a C grade or better in English, Maths, at least two sciences, a foreign language and a humanity which is narrowly defined as History or Geography. Nationally only 15% of pupils gained this qualification while at the Endowed Schools just short of 80% of the Year 11 pupils achieved this standard. One reason for the low national score is the reducing number of students who take a foreign language with exam entries at GCSE having diminished by a third in the last decade. At the Endowed Schools we are committed to language teaching and are unusual in offering four modern foreign languages (French, German, Spanish and Russian) at GCSE and at A’ level.

A number of good independent schools scored zero for both ‘5 or more GCSEs’ and for the number achieving the English Bacc. This is because they entered their pupils for the IGCSE qualification for either or both of English and Maths. The IGCSE qualification is not currently recognized for these tables - but they will be from next year - though universities and employers already rate it highly. The current Y10 at the Endowed Schools will sit this exam in Maths and English when they take their GCSEs in 2012. As previously explained we feel it is more challenging and will provide a better education in these subjects for our students.

At A’level the students of the Endowed Schools again very did well. A number of newspapers have reported the total points score achieved by students which rewards quantity of subjects taken more than the quality of the results. The average points score per subject taken is also published which is, in my eyes, a better indicator of student performance. Here both the boys and girls did very well with scores of 243 and 245 respectively. (For these tables an A grade is awarded 270 points, B grade 240 etc so the average grade was slightly better than a B grade for both boys and girls).

I would again like to congratulate the pupils and teachers for all their hard work in producing such good results last year. I know that this year’s examination candidates are working hard and I hope they will exceed the performance of the previous year putting them in a strong position as they move to the next stage of their education.

Stephen Roberts