Sydenham School Celebrates “Simply Tremendous” GCSE Results: “Best Ever!”
71% of students gain A*-C (including English and Mathematics)
Nearly a quarter of the grades at A or A*
22 Girls gain 8 or more A and A*s
Sydenham School’s acting head teacher Ruth Holden proclaimed the school’s GCSE results ‘simply amazing’ as students celebrated today (Thursday) in the sunshine; most having opened their results envelopes to discover grades that more than met the standards they needed to pursue their A level ambitions.
“These are the best results ever at Sydenham,” said Ms Holden. “We are delighted that our English results are 85.3% for students receiving a C or above, and Maths is 77% for those gaining a C grade or more: simply tremendous! Overall the percentages of students gaining Cs or above or As and A*s were higher than ever with just under a quarter of our year 11s’ grades being either As or A*s. And on top of that, 22 students received a quite amazing eight or more As or A*s. I am pleased to send a huge well done out to all students, staff and parents!”
Commenting on the Maths results, Associate Assistant Headteacher (Maths and Digital Technologies) Mark Freakes said: “They are equal to the best we have ever achieved, and that’s before taking into account the far more demanding context surrounding the subject with grade boundaries being higher, retakes no longer allowed, course-work removed and all the emphasis placed upon a final set of ‘sat’exams. Our results are well above our examination board Edexel’s national average - by at least 7%.”
Against the background of general success, certain performances inevitably stood out. These included:
Hannah Riley (16) from Forest Hill who got Sydenham School’s top grades this year with 6 A*s and 6 As. (A*s in Music; Physics; Geography; English Language; Higher Maths; and Fine Art.) She said: “I am so pleased, particularly with my A* in Geography as I thought I had really flunked the exam. I’m off to enrol on my A-Level courses and I’ll be staying at Sydenham.”
Sabrina Obiago (16) from Croydon who on opening her envelope found that she had 6 A*s; 3 As; 2 Bs and 1 C. (A*s in English Language and Literature; Higher Maths ; History; German and RE.) “I am really happy with my grades and surprised at my History grade. My message to anyone starting GCSEs is to knuckle-down earlier on in Year 10 – it’s easy to switch off a bit in the first year of the courses and that makes the second year far more pressured than it needs to be.”
Hannah Khan who amassed 6 A*s; 4 As and 1B. (A*s in Biology and Chemistry; Geography; English Language and Literature; and French.) When we met her she had not dared to open her envelope: “I am waiting for my mum. I’ll only check my results when I get home – that way if I break down no one will see me.” (Happily – if she did break down, the tears would most likely have been of delight!)
Iris Hobson-Mazur (16) of Crystal Palace gained 2 A*s; 7 As; 3 Bs. (A*s in English and Fine Art). “Funnily enough, I slept pretty well last night – but it is a huge relief. The A grade I got for maths is the first I have ever received in any test or mock – so I suppose I timed that well. “
Kainath Sahebzada (16) from Catford; whose tally was 6 A*s; 4 As; and 2 Bs. (A*s in Biology; Physics; Geography; Computer Science; French and RE.) Kainaith was one of only 15 girls to gain an A* in computer science in the country.
Every year there is a triumph despite adversity story, and in 2016 at Sydenham, the tale concerned Nia Cox (16) of Catford who deserves particular praise for having managed a strong set of results (1 A; 4 Bs and 7Cs) despite fracturing the wrist of her writing hand in the middle of the exam period. “I had to type all my exams after the accident which was a very slow process because the plaster kept getting in the way of my fingers. I am proud of all my results, but, I suppose my A for RE is really sweet given my grade in the mock was only an E. I revised so much after that – it was a real shock and I am so pleased I did not give up.”
Students were asked for their words of wisdom to pass on to anybody starting out on GCSE courses. Many spoke of the need to continually revise, so that the two years are a bit more balanced in terms of pressure. For her part Isobel Kirby (16) of East Dulwich highlighted the best way to cope with the examinations themselves: “ When you have sat an exam, then it is important to let it go and not fixate on your performance: your attention should be only on the next exam you have to sit.”