GCSE results: New grading system, same outstanding results at Bourne Grammar School

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Five years since they joined Bourne Grammar as the first expanded intake, the Year 11 pupils are celebrating some truly wonderful GCSE results.

Widely reported in the national press, this year’s results in mathematics, English language and English literature are the first to be awarded to pupils who have followed the new, reformed GCSE courses which have more challenging content. These three new GCSEs are graded on a scale from 9 to 1, with 9 being the highest grade. The new grade 9, designed to reward exceptional performance, has been set at level even higher than the old A* level. The new grade 7 has been set to be equivalent to the old grade A.

The school’s 178 pupils achieved 58 grade 9 passes, 148 at grade 8 or better and 287 at grade 7 or better. Overall, 48 pupils achieved at least one grade 9, eight pupils obtained two or more grade 9 passes and Adam Jordan achieved an astonishing hat-trick of three grade 9 passes.

These fabulous results are testament to the extraordinary amount of hard work that the pupils have put into their studies. They demonstrate also the determination of the school’s teachers to guide the pupils through the the rigours and challenges of the new GCSE courses whilst working hard to come to terms with the new, more demanding syllabi for the first time.

The remaining subjects - most Bourne Grammar pupils take a further seven - are, this year, graded on the old A*-G scale. There were some fabulous results; 37 pupils achieved all A* or A grades. Four pupils achieved seven A* grades, 14 were awarded six or seven A* grades and 23 pupils obtained five or more A* grades.

With the study of modern foreign languages in decline across the country, it was encouraging to see some outstanding results in the three languages that are on offer at Bourne Grammar. In Spanish, an astonishing 59 A* grades was achieved, and 107 grades were A or A* grades. In French, all pupils achieved A or A* grades, and 78 per cent were A* grades. In German all grades were B or better and most were A* or A grades. Spanish, French and German are all offered as A-level subjects at Bourne Grammar.

The science subjects are traditionally strong at Bourne Grammar, and will doubtless continue to be so as the school’s new £4m science block provides a greatly improved atmosphere for their study. In biology, 79per cent of the GCSE grades were A* or A grades. In chemistry the figure was 72per cent and in Physics it was 70per cent.

Pupils’ grades in drama were predominantly A* or A grades.

In addition to his three grade 9 results, Adam Jordan from Stamford achieved 6 A* grades and an A grade. Neve Hattee from Ketton and Lily Gray from Bourne both added 7 A* grades to their 9,9,8 profiles on the new system. Chloe Winham from Peterborough obtained 7 A* grades along with her 9,8,7 numerical grades. Abi Cooper from Bourne also achieved 7A* grades to add to her 9,8,8. Six A* grades, in addition to excellent numerical grades, were achieved by Isabel Spinley, Heather Rawnsley, Thomas Parker, Harry Moss, Tom Hutchins, Matthew Holmes, Megan Hassall, Chloe

Dix and Ashok Bannejee. Ashok and Thomas also obtained a special distinction award for GCSE Further Mathematics.

Bourne Grammar’s proud Headteacher, Jonathan Maddox, said: “‘I am thrilled with our pupils’ results. This Year 11 cohort had to come to terms with being ‘guinea pigs’ for the new, more challenging GCSEs and will go forward with a potentially-confusing mix of numerical grades and letter grades, but what is clear to everyone is that the pupils’ results - however they are presented - are truly impressive.

“The pupils have worked so hard, understanding that in Mathematics and English in particular they have had to come to terms with some really difficult work without the comfort of years of past papers to practise on. It was almost impossible to predict how many grade 9 passes our pupils would achieve, as the Government has made it clear that awards at this level would be made to reward ‘exceptional performance’, so to see 58 grade 9 results today, and to witness the pupils’ delight, made this a very special day for our school.”