A-LEVELS: star National students make the grade

HIGH FLIERS -- some of the many successful A-level pupils at National School: (from left) Back Row: Chris Hunt, Mark Lester, Tom Smith, Joe Pearson, Jake Wright, Daniel Jones and Whitney May. Front Row: Sarah Dunstan, Jessica Rigley, Lorna Wright and Olivia Rogers
HIGH FLIERS -- some of the many successful A-level pupils at National School: (from left) Back Row: Chris Hunt, Mark Lester, Tom Smith, Joe Pearson, Jake Wright, Daniel Jones and Whitney May. Front Row: Sarah Dunstan, Jessica Rigley, Lorna Wright and Olivia Rogers
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BETTER grades and more passes were among the highlights of an emotional A-Level results day at Hucknall’s two main secondary schools.

Hundreds of year-13 pupils ripped open their results envelope to find out whether they had achieved the results they needed to go on to university or to move into training or work.

For some, there were tears of joy, hugs and cheers. For others, who did not get the grades they needed, they made a frantic dash for the nearest computer to look at their options.

At the National Church Of England Academy — the new name for the National Comprehensive School on Annesley Road — the pass rate (grades A* to E) shot up to 98%, which was up from 96% last year. The 46 students also scored 200 UCAS points per entry on average — also up on previous years.

The school also reported an increase in the number of students (to 8%) who achieved the new A* top grade, in subjects including English literature, business studies, psychology and general studies.

National’s head teacher, Dr Jon Edwards, said: “The students have worked hard and deserved to do well. The vast majority of students achieved the places they wanted at their chosen universities, with the usual very high proportion of our students going on to university.”

Among the top achievers were talented pupils James Johnson, who will go on to study medicine at Sheffield University, Sarah Dunstan, who achieved a coveted A* grade and is set to study mathematics at Loughborough University, Chris Hunt, who won a place at Leeds University, studying criminal justice and criminology, and Tom Smith, who is set to study pharmacy at Nottingham University.

Coun Philip Owen (Con), Notts County Council’s Cabinet member for children and young people’s services, congratulated the students in schools across the county who did so well in their A-level exams.

Coun Owen said: “I know that our young people have worked extremely hard and put a great deal of effort into their examinations. It’s obviously paid off, with overall results up slightly on last year. I offer them my congratulations.

“Hopefully, people will be getting the results they have been hoping for so that they can make choices about the future. However, if the results they get are not what they had hoped for, the key point is not to worry. Get some advice. Speak to teachers. Make use of the many support websites and help-lines which offer useful information.

“I know that our teachers have been working with the young people to support and encourage them. I value their commitment. We are all ambitious for the future of Nottinghamshire’s young people and we will build on these foundations and work to improve the level of achievement in our schools.

The overall pass rate for Nottinghamshire schools has increased slightly, with 97.3% of entries gaining a grade E or above, against last year’s figure of 96.7%. This compares to 97.8% nationally.