Mid Norfolk Results Day: A Levels reaction from Dereham, Fakenham and Reepham
14:17 15 August 2014
Sixth form colleges in Mid Norfolk saw mixed results, with a drop in grades at Dereham and Fakenham, and a rise in Reepham.
Similarly, while several successful students achieved grades high enough to gain access to prestige universities like Cambridge and Oxford, others were left reviewing their options after falling short of the grades required by their chosen universities.
In Dereham, two students are celebrating places at Oxford University, including high-flyer Alice Macneill whose four A*s in chemistry, biology, maths and further maths, have earned a place to study medicine at Oxford’s Worcester College.
The 18-year-old from Little Dunham, between Dereham and Swaffham, said it was a “massive relief” to get the results she needed to follow her chosen career path. She will start her medicine degree at Oxford in October.
The Dereham Sixth Form College student, who previously went to Litcham School, said: “I’m really excited and a bit nervous. I’m really excited about the chance to start something new and hopefully it will be really good and what I expect.”
Meanwhile, it was a mix of celebration and disappointment for friends Joanna Brown and Ben Allen. While Joanna’s two A*s, A and B have secured her place at Oxford University, Ben has just missed out on his first choice, Imperial College in London.
Despite an impressive haul of two A*s, one A and a B, the last result left him a fraction away from the required grades, and his subsequent telephone plea to the college to be accepted was refused.
But he will still be able to study computer science at Bristol University.
“I exceeded the offer in some areas, but the B meant I couldn’t get in,” he said. “They just said no. I am so annoyed to have been so close, but I am really happy that I have got into Bristol.”
Joanna, who is from Holme Hale, near Swaffham, and will start her course in human sciences at Keble College at Oxford University in October, said: “I’m happy with my results and I’m really happy to get into Oxford. You always expect the best from yourself and it wasn’t about getting into Oxford but about doing the best that I could achieve.”
In Fakenham, despite missing several weeks of college over the last two years due to serious illness, Fakenham Academy student Jenny Gurney achieved an impressive A*, two As and a B.
The 19-year-old had her sights set on a place at Cambridge University and, despite narrowly missing the grade requirements, is waiting discover if she will still be accepted.
If she doesn’t go to Cambridge, Miss Gurney, who lives in Burnham Overy Staithe, near Wells, will study natural sciences at the University of Bath.
She said: “I’m just really happy to have achieved what I have.
“I had to re-sit my AS year because I missed so much time at college through illness, so I didn’t even expect that I’d be able to go on and do my A-levels.”
Miss Gurney, who has also completed some voluntary work for Natural England, said: “I was born with cystic fibrosis and I’ve just become used to living with it.
“With A-levels it is okay to study by yourself. The course work has been difficult but the college and my family have been very supportive.
“I really want to thank everyone who has helped and supported me.”
Miss Gurney achieved an A* in maths, A grades in chemistry and biology and a B in physics. She is working towards a career as a research scientist.
Full A Level results (previous years are in brackets)
DEREHAM SIXTH FORM COLLEGE
A-level pass rate A*-C: 72pc (77pc) (83pc) (81pc)
A-level pass rate A*-E: 100pc (100pc) (100pc) (99pc)
Percentage of pupils gaining three A-level passes: 97pc (80pc)
AS-level pass rate A-C: 50pc (56pc) (65pc) (67pc)
“The results are down slightly on last year but we anticipated that because they took away the modules. It will be interesting to compare with the rest of the country. I don’t like results going down but I expect that’s in line with the rest of the country. It’s really exciting that universities are honouring places, it’s really nice to see. Your heart goes out to the ones who don’t get the grades but it all works out in the end. I know for some students they are devastated and they feel as if the world has come to an end but it really hasn’t and there are a myriad of ways forward.” Phyllis O’Grady, college director.
A-level pass rate A*-C: 67pc (73pc) (76pc) (73pc)
A-level pass rate A*-E: 100pc (100pc) (99pc) (99pc)
Percentage of pupils gaining three A-level passes: 82pc (77pc)
AS-level pass rate A-C: 38pc (50pc) (51pc) (52pc)
“There has been a slight drop overall compared to our good results of the past three years but the students have performed in line with our expectations based on their abilities. This is the sixth consecutive year that we’ve had students go to Oxford or Cambridge, with Henry Tidd, Jordan Osborn and Ellen Berry all securing places at Cambridge, and that is something we should be proud of. I’m incredibly proud of the hard work of students and staff and the ever present support of our parents. We continue to support all students in the local community regardless of their abilities. We have taken in some students who have been refused places at other colleges and they have performed brilliantly.” Matthew Parr-Burman, principal.
A-level pass rate A*-C: 86pc (82pc) (85pc) (74pc)
A-level pass rate A*-E: 100pc (100pc) (100pc) (99pc)
Percentage of pupils gaining three A-level passes: 98pc (95pc)
AS-level pass rate A-C: 69pc (70pc)
“Last year Reepham High School and College was identified as one of the top 67 post-16 institutions in England. The results for 2014 are even stronger with 100pc pass rate at A* to E and 62pc of those grades at either A*, A or B. We would like to take this opportunity to pass on our congratulations to our students and to wish them every success for the future.” Mark Farrar, principal.