The Class of 2017 Celebrate GCSEs !!


The class of 2017 have done us proud ! Congratulations to all of our students on their GCSE results. Once again, it was crystal clear that hard work, persistence and good exam preparation means success. This applies to students right across the ability range. This year our students have worked really hard for their success, and on top of all the usual stresses have had the added pressure of a new, confusing exam system and tougher exams. I must also thank and congratulate all of my colleagues who have managed magnificently the rushed introduction of this new system over the last two years, and have done everything in their power to ensure students were not disadvantaged.

We’re celebrating some fantastic individual performances. If we take the new grade 7 to mean A, and grades 8 and 9 to mean A*, then Chris Grieve and Eleanor Sansbury each achieved 12 A*-A, including 9A*. Maddy Ross achieved 11 A*-A also with 9A*. Adam Barber and Josephine Wild each achieved 10 A*-A. Achieving 7 or more A*-A were Maria Berry, Kit Boothroyd, Olivia Hellier, Erin Hewald, Marcus McCabe, Robbie Palmer, twins Jessica and Millie Pascoe, Harry Price, Lucy Pullen, and Trevor Tester.

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          Eleanor Sansbury                   Josephine Wild                       Maddy Ross

While it’s important to recognise the success of our most able students – it shows the calibre of Clyst Vale students and the quality of teaching – I’m particularly pleased to report that one in five of our students achieved at least 5A grades among their results, which is the highest for three years. There are also many other students who worked conscientiously and over achieved, while several did fantastically well to overcome health or family difficulties to achieve their grades and keep their education progressing.


You get a strong sense of how good an exam year it has been from the reactions of students opening their results, and Thursday was a happy and positive day !

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           Trevor Tester                       Amelia Hopkinson                 Jasmine Cosway

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             Kelsey Marriott & Marcus McCabe              Leah Ripley & Mollie Tillett



Most schools have been reporting the old performance measure of 5A*-C including English and Maths. For us, this measure was 72%, up 8% on last year. In previous years, we’d have been jumping up and down about this, but we won’t know for sure really how well we’ve done until national figures come out in the Autumn; this particularly applies to progress measures. Nonetheless, an 8% improvement is obviously worth celebrating, and there’s a lot to be optimistic about. Our most able students have done superbly. The total of A grades and 7-9 grades is healthy. The standard pass rates of 83% in English is to be celebrated (we’d have been thrilled with 83% A*-C in the past); 75% in Maths looks good. Over 70% of the grades are C/4; and not one student left Clyst Vale without a GCSE qualification.

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                                          Freya Westney opens her results



This was the first year of new GCSEs with tougher exams and a new grading system in English Language, English Literature and Maths. So, to what extent was Clyst Vale’s experience similar and different to the media stories before the results came out ?

  • We were warned that results could be volatile, and some schools would see unexpected and significant drops. Fortunately, this didn’t happen: on the whole, our students have achieved pretty much in line with what they expected and deserved. There have, however, been a handful of peculiar individual results which we are looking at.
  • Nationally, the proportion of A*-A grades has fallen; we’ve seen this to an extent, although were delighted that we achieved nine of the new 9 grades (sort of “A* extra”). An excellent statistic is that nationally 3.2% of English Literature grades were grade 9; we did twice as well at Clyst Vale ! (7 from an entry of 115 is 6.1%).


Mrs Oldfield has a thumbs up for Harry Price and the English results

  • Nationally, there has been a drop in the total % of A*-C grades (including the new 4-9 grades) to 66%. Another excellent statistic is that Clyst Vale’s class of 2017 achieved 74.7% A*-C, which is also an increase on last year.


Once again, congratulations to all of our students; thanks to all of my colleagues; and a big thank you to parents/carers for all your support. GCSE results day is when the strength of the home-school-student partnership is demonstrated.


The Cunninghams (and Dr Turl) celebrate Emer’s

results at their umpteenth Clyst Vale Results Day !