“Great oaks from little acorns grow.”
14th century proverb

  • British boarding schools’ exam results round-up | Dickinson School Consulting

British boarding schools’ exam results round-up

As the new academic year gets underway, we’d like to recognise the achievements of students who got their exam results over the summer. Always newsworthy, this past two years’ grades have generated even closer scrutiny due to disruption caused by the pandemic.

International Baccalaureate (IB) results were the first to be released on 6th July. Due to its international nature, the IB’s governing body had to work with government regulators regarding local restrictions and the impact of COVID-19 on students. Schools were surveyed to determine which of two pathways would suit them better: written examinations, where they could be administered safely, or the non-exam route using a combination of internal assessment coursework and teacher-predicted grades, where they could not.

Despite the challenges this cohort faced, we received news of encouraging IB results from a number of the schools we work with. As a relatively small, non-selective English boarding school, Windermere School’s average point score of 36.3 out of 45 was an real accomplishment, especially set against the world average of 33. Meanwhile, Haileybury School’s IB students achieved an average point score of 39, with over 40% of them achieving 40 points or higher.

To establish the A Level grades released on 10th August, schools across the UK used a range of evidence, including mini-exams, coursework and mock exams. One in five schools had a sample of their grades checked by exam boards, 15% of which were queried but only 1% altered.

Bromsgrove School celebrated 26% of all entries being awarded A*, 62% graded A*/A and 89% A* to B, while Leighton Park School was delighted with its students’ 72% A*/A and 93% A* to B. Like several of our British boarding schools, Haileybury offers A Levels as well as the IB in its 6th Form and these results too were impressive; 91.5% of all grades being awarded at A* to B, 70% at A*/A and an exceptional 36% at A*.

As with A Levels, GCSE grades this year were established in school, rather than students sitting external exams, but this meant sustained scrutiny over several weeks and was by no means an easier option. We were delighted to hear from Harrogate Ladies College that 25% of its girls achieved the top grade 9, 41% grade 9-8 and 62% grade 9-7. At Caterham School, 92% of all grades were 9-7, half of all grades awarded were grade 9 and the average grade for a Caterham pupil was 8.1.

There is no doubt this has been a challenging couple of years for students completing their 16+ and 18+ courses, and for their teachers, so we applaud all of them. If you would like more information about UK boarding schools and how they support their students no matter what else life throws at them, please contact us.

Photo by kind permission of Leighton Park School