A-level pass rate drops at Exmouth school

Exmouth students have received their A-level results with mixed fortune

SCREAMS of joy roared around Exmouth as students received their A-level results – but for many, top grades failed to guarantee an instant university place.

Hard-working teenagers descended on the community college, in Gipsy Lane, as early as 8am last Thursday, August 19, to find out how well they had performed.

Amid predictions that thousands of people across the country could miss out on university places due to multi-million pound cuts, the early rise was to give pupils adequate time to contact UCAS’ clearing staff.

Not long after receiving their marks, a number of the college’s youngsters rushed to call, in an attempt to secure a last-minute place.

Despite thirteen students achieving the new A* grade, Exmouth Community College’s overall pass rate dropped compared with last year from 95 to 93 per cent.

The pass rate nationally, however, rose for the 28th year in a row.

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Simon Tanner, assistant principal, of post 16 education, refused to be disappointed. He said: “Overall we are pleased with the results because it was a tough year for the exams with the new A-star mark. It is more of a blip than anything else.

“We know that we have work to do in a few areas but we’re also very pleased with certain students and the staff in subject departments who have clearly worked very hard this year.

“It has been a very large year group and we don’t know if that has been a factor (in the drop).”

Mr Tanner said despite reported fears of a pressure on university places, most people had managed to get their desired marks to guarantee a spot.

He added: “The main thing with results, as always, is that it gets them onto the places the courses are aimed at.

“I think in a highly competitive world, the students are aware of how highly important that is. On the whole, people are happy. They seem happy they have got their courses and what their next step is.”

Exmouth Community College’s results at AS level also suffered a drop compared with 12 months ago.

The amount of students who achieved an A to C grade fell by nine per cent from 49 last year to 40 per cent this time around.

Graham Allen, deputy principal, said in spite of a drop in the college’s pass rate at A and AS level, several people had performed extremely well.

“I would like to pay tribute to all the students and the subject departments,” he said.

“It’s not a massive drop. If you look at some of the departments and areas, there are some who have done really well and that is fantastic news for them.”