West Buckland School has celebrated a 100 per cent A-level pass rate with some outstanding individual performances.
With no exams this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, teachers submitted grades for students, to be moderated of approved by the exam boards.
Headmaster Phillip Stapleton admitted he had very mixed emotions. He said: “Whilst I am pleased that we achieved a 100 per cent pass rate and delighted at the outcome for a number of outstanding individuals, the system that has been applied was never going to be fair and the lack of granularity does not account for the individual.”
West Buckland saw some top results, including four A* grades (including EPQ) for Isobel Skinner and Marley McLintock.
Isobel will take up her offer at Durham University to read natural sciences and Marley will be going to UCL (University College London) to read economics.
Fiona Corrick and Holly Crosbie gained three A* and an A, while Ned Colville was awarded 3A*s.
Isobel said: “Despite the challenges that schools have faced with new communication methods and technology, I never felt like I missed out on my education. I am extremely grateful to my staff who have been outstanding with their support during this whole period.”
Art student, Eliza Weeks, who gained an A*, will take up an unconditional place at the Art Academy, London to study fine art.
There have been some notable results from overseas students as well, including Benson Tai, from Hong Kong, gaining two A*s and two As. He will study physiotherapy at the University of Southampton.
Mr Stapleton said education should not just be about grades but the person as a whole and feels that West Buckland offers its pupils the best platform to develop as people.
He said there had always been some level of standardisation and discrepancies in the exam system and it is important how students deal with that.
He said: “It is for these times in life that we try to prepare our students. We have followed the ‘VESPA’ mindset, which aims to build resilience, developing the skills that will see them through periods of uncertainty and emerge, intact, as the valued and exceptional individuals that they are.”
“The ‘A’ for attitude, in the VESPA mindset comes in to play here. Adversity can strike at any stage and it is the way that we react that is important.
“I have seen real positivity and self-belief so far and we will continue to offer our support for all our students. I am also extremely grateful for the way the universities have stepped up and reacted to this situation.
“I am extremely grateful to my staff who continued to work so hard throughout lockdown to enable our students to continue their studies. Congratulations to the students and we wish them every luck.”