Pride in GCSE results for Castle and Marlwood schools
SCHOOLS in the Thornbury area have praised the achievements of pupils who achieved their GCSE qualifications following covid disruption.
The Year 11 cohort of 245 candidates at the Castle School included three – Amy Lyons, Richard Usherwood and Eleanor Clark – who were all awarded the maximum grade 9, in 11 different subjects.
Many others were awarded strings of high grades, including Zoe Bonnett, who obtained 10 grade 9s and Shona Pattullo with nine, while Lauren Morgans, Grace Faulkner, Madeleine Elliott, Faith Holley, Francesca Harrod, Bethany Hyndman and Poppy Jones all obtained at least 10 GCSEs at Grades 9 or 8.
Head teacher Joe Docherty said: "I’m so proud of this year-group of students. In March 2020, they were Year 10 students who had just completed a successful week of work experience when we went into lockdown.
"Since then, they have had nothing like a normal pattern of GCSE study – times in school, times at home doing online learning, and many occasions when individual or groups have had to isolate at home. They have faced the challenge of studying for qualifications, not knowing for sure how and when they will be assessed.
"I’ve mentioned some students who achieved the highest grades but we recognise the variety of talents and achievements from all our students.
"These young people are much more than just exam results, and one of the hidden downsides of covid is that we haven’t been able to see them involved in the normal range of extra-curricular activities.
"We were thrilled to hear that Luke Ball (pictured above), who obtained an outstanding set of GCSE results, has also just been selected to represent Great Britain at high jump at Under 18.
"I think the greatest progress of all has been made by students such as Poppy Balkwill and Cailey Rice, both of whom have obtained a great mix of GCSEs and vocational awards and have places at SGS college, and Isla Lanfear, who will be moving into our sixth form."
At Marlwood School in Alveston, staff said there were "many notable performances", including from Gabriella Williams and Sam McClaren, who each achieved "a sweep of outstanding top grades", and from Laura Evans, Seb Sumner, Stanley Willmott and Freddie Peacock.
The school said: "The results of all our pupils are a tribute to the very dedicated and committed staff who always go above and beyond, supportive parents and carers and most importantly a superb group of diligent and conscientious young people who have flourished in what has been an unprecedented time."
Picture: Luke Ball achieved "outstanding" GCSE results and a call-up to the Great Britain athletics squad