STUDENTS in Weymouth, Dorchester and West Dorset are celebrating an outstanding set of A-level results.
There were emotional scenes yesterday as youngsters gathered at schools and colleges to collect their results.
Thomas Hardye School in Dorchester celebrated record results while there was a 100 per cent pass rate at Woodroffe School in Lyme Regis.
More Budmouth College students than ever before are going to university while Weymouth College saw an 11 per cent increase in passes.
Nationally, the overall pass rate fell for the first time in more than 30 years, official figures show.
In total, just over one in four, or 26 per cent, of exams were awarded an A* or A grade, down 0.3 percentage points on last summer.
But the proportion of A* grades handed out rose to 8.2 per cent, up 0.6 percentage points on 2013.
The latest results come amid major changes to the system, with January exams scrapped, leaving fewer opportunities for students to re-sit papers. All exams are now taken in the summer.
Schools have been warned that they could see changes to their results this year due to the overhaul.
THE highest ever number of pupils from Budmouth College in Weymouth will be moving on to higher education after getting their A-level results.
Students and staff are celebrating after the college’s total pass rate improved by 0.2 per cent, increasing to 98.4 per cent.
Principal David Akers is thrilled with this year’s results. He said: “I’m delighted with the results. It’s a combination of very, very hard work from the students and the staff, supported by the parents. We’ve got lots of youngsters who have got into medical school and into Oxford and Cambridge and lots of youngsters have got into university, which is fantastic.”
Dervla Ireland, from Osmington, has achieved 3 As and an A* in biology, chemistry, maths and English literature and is going on to medical school at Nottingham University.
WEYMOUTH College students celebrated their results with a glass of bubbly.
Students hugged and cheered as they opened their results envelopes.
The college had 95 students sitting the A2 Level and the pass rate was 96 per cent. This is an 11 per cent increase on the 2013 pass rate.
Principal Liz Myles said: “They have done extremely well.
“These students can be very proud of their efforts this year, as are we. They’ve worked incredibly hard to invest in their future and achieve their ambitions.”
A spokesman for the college said they were now in the top 10 per cent of UK colleges based on the latest success rates and its rise in performance means it is now ranked in the UK’s top 20 colleges.
Student Gemma Harris got three B grades in Law, History and RE. She is now off to study law and American legal studies at university. The course involves travelling to the US.
She said: “I’m delighted.”
Molly Neville said she was so happy to get an A* in law and Bs in psychology and RE. She said: “I’m really chuffed with that, it’s so good.”
She is now off to study law at Kent University. The friends said they would be celebrating by going out.
Reeha Bailey, 19, from Chickerell, received an A* in English literature, an A* in psychology, and a C in history. She said: “I wasn’t expecting these results at all, I’m simply overwhelmed. I have a place at Exeter to study history which I’m looking forward to.”
Anna Irwin, 30, from Weymouth, received an A in French, A in politics and B in English. She said: “I’m really happy with my results. It was a challenge being a mature student as I needed to balance home life with studies, but the college was really helpful. It was a bit of a challenge fitting in with people who are younger than me but I’m really proud of what I have done.”
Jody Damen, 17, from Weymouth received a B in dance. She said: “I was nervous about opening my results having a dream about them last night, but I’m happy with what I got. I’m going to go to London dance school which will be really good,”
Erin Paull, 17, also from Weymouth, received a C law and E in psychology. She said: “I was nervous about getting my results but I’m happy with what I got.”
Both plan to go to a party to celebrate and relax.
She said: “I’m really happy with my results and I’m looking forward to going to university”
Liam Asman achieved A* AA in his results and will be attending Cambridge University in September.
He said: “I’m absolutely so excited to be going to university. It will be a lot of hard work and I’ll hopefully be going over to America to study in Silicon Valley.”
George Simmonds also achieved A* AA in his results and is going to Bath University to study chemistry.
He said: “I’ve been at Budmouth for seven years, so I am going to miss it here, but I’m well excited to go to university.”
Karam Hayre is heading to Birmingham Medical School in September, after achieving A*AAC in his A-Levels.
He said: “I’m really happy with my results, it’s a huge relief. I didn’t get a great night’s sleep last night!”
“It’s a bittersweet feeling leaving all of my friends here but I can’t wait for the new adventure.”
Georgia Brymley-Jones, from Lodmoor, achieved AABC in her results. She said: “I’ve got the results I needed to study zoology at Southampton University which was my first choice.”
Charlotte Cranny-Evans is extremely happy after achieving 100% in her drama A-Level.
She said: “I’m in shock! I’m really really happy. I’ve deferred going to study PR at Bournemouth University for a year, but now I think I’m going to research studying drama at university.”
THOMAS HARDYE SCHOOL
IT WAS all smiles at Thomas Hardye School in Dorchester as teachers and pupils celebrated record results.
The school bucked the national trend for declining pass rates, with over 36 per cent of grades at A* or A – a school record.
Passes at grades A-C also went up by 4 per cent to 83 per cent and the overall pass rate was 97 per cent.
Headteacher Mike Foley was delighted with the outcome and said: “These are exceptional results and congratulations are due to students and their teachers for all that they have achieved. I am particularly pleased with the number of top grades, offering a passport into the best universities.”
The school was full of happy, relieved and excited pupils celebrating the outcome of weeks of revision and years of hard work in class.
Charlie Street, 18, from Weymouth, was one of the top achievers at the school, picking up A*s in Physics, Computing, and Maths A2 along with an A grade in Further Maths AS.
He said: “I can’t believe it - I’m so happy. I even got full marks in my Maths A Level. I’m now going to Birmingham University to study Computer Science.”
Fellow pupil Imogen Court, 18, who lives near Dorchester, said she was over the moon to have achieved 2 A*s and an A at A2.
Now she has her qualifications in Maths, Theatre Studies and Psychology she will study Maths at Cardiff University. She added: “I’m looking forward to being in a new place and meeting new people, gaining my independence really because that’s important.”
Rachel Newman, 18, from Weymouth, said she was ‘really, really happy’ about her 2A*s and 2As in Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Chemistry. She will be studying Maths at St Andrew’s.
STUDENTS from the combined sixth form college of Sir John Colfox and Beaminster turned up in their droves to collect their results.
It was an excellent year for the college, with 99 per cent of students passing their subjects, with 75 per cent of those achieving A* to C grades.
Kay Taylor, headteacher of Sir John Colfox, said: “We are delighted that yet again we have superb results at A level. The students have worked really hard, supported by committed and talented staff, to get top grades and secure places at university or high level apprenticeships.”
Meanwhile, students at Woodroffe School in Lyme Regis celebrated an 'outstanding' set of A level results this year with a 100 per cent pass rate. 26 per cent of entries were graded A* or A; 55 per cent were graded A *, A or B.
Headteacher Dr Richard Steward said the students have done 'superbly this year', adding: “I'm delighted to see so many individuals achieving A* and A grades, and particularly pleased not to see a single U grade in any subject.”