SCHOOLS around the district marked a successful year for their GCSE students this week.
Central Lancaster High School was celebrating the highest results in its history, confirming the school’s new national Teaching School status.
The school has continued to improve academic results every year for the last 10 years, and this year 94 per cent of its students gained five or more A*-C grades at GCSE.
With 56 per cent achieving five including English and maths, the school will become a Teaching School in September.
Head Jon Wright said: “This is amazing! We are all so proud of our students. They make our school outstanding.
“Their performance is outstanding and opens doors for their chosen futures into sixth form and beyond.
“I am in awe of the tireless efforts and achievements of the staff.”
The results show how the school caters for all students at all levels of ability in keeping with its ethos.
This year, 100 per cent of students attending achieved five or more A*-G grades while 32 per cent achieved three or more A*/A grades.
At Lancaster Royal Grammar School, 68 per cent of all GCSEs were graded A or A*, and an exceptional 34.4 per cent of GCSEs received A* grades.
Headmaster Chris Pyle said: “This is an outstanding set of results, which reflects the talent and dedication of the year group.
“There are many individual success stories behind these figures, which result from much hard work from students, as well as the outstanding teaching which is the hallmark of the school.”
“As newly appointed headmaster, I very much look forward to seeing this year group’s further achievements as they move into the Sixth Form.”
Among the exceptional individual results, 12 boys received 10 or more A* grades: Freddie Brown, Andre Dallas, Ed Dunkley, Alasdair Fairhurst, Tim Hendry, Josh Hillis, Simon Kelly, Ben Kingcox, Alex Porteous, Krishnan Ram-Prasad, Adam Richardson and Tom Triviais.
Among those gaining 11 A* grades, Alex Porteous and Krishnan Ram-Prasad also gained A grades in both Additional Maths and AS level Music.
Lancaster Girls’ Grammar School head Jackie Cahalin congratulated her pupils on an A*-C pass rate of 99.5 per cent, with 76 per cent of grades at A*-A.
Two students achieved A* grades in all 11.5 GCSEs, Shuhui Ren and Erin Whalley, with Lisa Schomerus gaining 11 A* grades.
A further nine girls gained A* grades in 10 GCSEs, Imogen Granger, Gabrielle Meredith-Elsworth, Evie Metcalfe, Mary Perrins, Claire Richardson, Megan Appleyard, Jessica Atkinson, Daisy Shaw and Lucy Smith.
Out of 114 students in the year group, 96 gained at least 5 of their GCSE grades at A*-A and 80 students gained eight grades at A*-A with 34 girls achieving 11 GCSEs at A* and A grades. E
specially pleasing were the outstanding results in GCSE mathematics, with 87 per cent of grades at A*-A, and in food technology, history and religious studies more than 90 per cent of grades were A*-A.
“I am delighted with these results, which reflect the hard work and commitment of the students,” Mrs Cahalin said.
“We look forward to welcoming them into our new sixth form building. Thank you to the LGGS staff for their contribution to such excellent results.”
Garstang Community Academy students have posted record-breaking GCSE results for the seventh successive year.
This year, 98 per cent of students gained five A*- C grades, 61 per cent achieving five A*-C including English and maths, an unprecedented 50 per cent receiving at least three A*/A and 27 per cent gaining at least five A*/A grades.
Charlotte Buckley, Seb Couch, Emily Cross, Ross Carter, Beth Helm, Grace Marsden, Sam Rawsthorne, Emily Sharpe, Georgia Shiels and Hannah Smith achieved A*/A grades in all their subjects.
Headteacher Phil Birch said: “2012 was another high-achieving year for the young people of Garstang.
“I am particularly delighted with the performance of our most able students, who have gained an unbelievable number of A*/A grades, whil a number of subjects, including key areas such as mathematics, have posted their best-ever results.
“These fabulous results are hard-gained, and are testimony to the ambition and commitment of our tremendous staff, students and parents.”
And Dallam School headteacher Steve Holdup said: “There have been some excellent GCSE results again this year. I was particularly pleased that the boys seem to be catching up with the girls.
“Students have done really well in creative subjects like art, drama, music and design as well.
“It’s all down, of course, to the hard work of students and their teachers.”
Students at Settle College topped last year’s previous best GCSE results by 10 per cent overall.
No fewer than 90 per cent of Year 11 students gained five or more GCSEs at grades A*-C, and 73 per cent of students gained five A*-C including English and maths; the key figure which the government uses to benchmark all schools. This too was a 10% increase on 2011. The national figure was 69%.
In English and maths, students performed extremely well with 78 per cent of students gaining A*-C (national 69 per cent) and in maths 82 per cent gained grades A*-C, 24 per cent better than the national figure of 58 per cent.
Principal William Bancroft said: “We are extremely proud of the students’ achievement.
“The students have put in a magnificent effort and have been very well supported by their teachers.
“We are particularly pleased that English results have gone up and that maths and science results are also excellent, all three subjects exceeding their targets.
“Both boys and girls have exceeded their targets and in eight GCSE subjects the pass rate was 100%.
“There have been some very significant individual achievements with many students gaining a large number of A and A* grades.
“Outstanding results were achieved by; Faye Ambler, Poppy Avison-Fell, Georgina Brown, Kate Cartmell Done, Joe Clarke, Lauren Dugdale, Jessica Edwards, Emma Gilbert, Lauren Heppenstall, Kathryn Hill, Ruby Horsfall, Jasmine Kendall, Ellie Maudsley, Gabriel Pickford, Chris Swithenbank, Alex Tarbox, Charlotte Taylor and Gemma Varley.”
This was a record year for GCSE results at Giggleswick School, with 74 per cent of entries awarded A*-B grades.
Among some outstanding results were those of twins Joe and Poppy Russell from Airton, who achieved 17 A*s and 3 As between them.
Other top scores were achieved by Carolina Mondragon-Bayarri from Giggleswick (11 A*/As), Georgia Birley from Penrith (10 A*/As), Will Ludlam from Embsay (eight A*s), Rebecca Keighley from Otterburn (nine A*/As), Sadie Milbourn from Bradley (eight A*/As) and Stefanie Hill from Giggleswick (seven A*/As).
“This cohort has benefited from the specialist subject teaching they have received since Year 7,” said headmaster Geoffrey Boult.
“They are the first year group to take GCSEs since we restructured the school in 2007, moving our senior entry point to Year 7 from Year 9.
“All year groups from Year 7 are taught by high quality GCSE and A level teachers in every subject including the three sciences, maths and modern languages and these results demonstrate the value of specialist teaching.”
Casterton School near Kirkby Lonsdale is celebrating another year of superb GCSE results with 61 per cent graded at A*-A.
Charlotte Ridsdale, who has been at Casterton School since she was aged just four, gained six A*s and three As.
“We’ve all been working so hard, but it never felt that we were going it alone,” said Charlotte.
“The support of everyone – the staff and the other girls – has been great.”
Charlotte, who is considering a career in political journalism, will study for her A-levels at Casterton’s Sixth Form.
Her father, Peter Ridsdale, said: “I’m so proud of Charlotte. This is testimony to hard work.
“She’s always been very happy at Casterton and her results show it’s been the right school and the right environment. Studying for her exams has been a partnership between Charlotte and the school.”
Among this year’s GCSE candidates is a group of 19 girls who gained the further maths Level 2 Certificate.
This challenging new qualification places emphasis on technical proficiency and rigorous problem solving skills.
Despite the difficulty of this exam, a remarkable 58 per cent of this group achieved A* with Distinction.
Stephanie Caisley, who gained an A in further maths, said: “The support you get here is really good – especially in maths.
“I also love the fact that at Casterton you can just be yourself. I’m staying on to do A-levels, but aside from lessons, there is lots to do, such as the Medical Society, which is great because I want a career in medicine.”
County Coun Susie Charles, cabinet member for children and schools, said: “Pupils in Lancashire have done their best and have given us a strong set of GCSE results, holding their own with the rest of the country.
“Early indications show that results in the county reflect the national trend of a slight overall drop in those achieving A*-C, for the first time in many years, and I am sure there will be discussion at a national level about the reform of marking regimes and changes to government targets.
“Each year the debate about examination results rages afresh, but I feel strongly that today the focus should be on the students, teachers and families who have worked together to achieve these results.
“I am very proud of them all and should like to give them my sincere congratulations.”