Pupils at Stockport Grammar School had plenty to celebrate this morning as they collected their GCSE results. 37% of the grades awarded were at A*, 71% were at A* or A, and 90% at A* to B. The A* to C success rate was above 98% for the sixth consecutive year. 44 boys and girls, over a quarter of the year group, achieved a clean sweep of all A* and A grades in 10 or 11 subjects.
Andrew Chicken, the headmaster, said that he was delighted with the pupils’ success: “Results of this quality and consistency are testament to the pupils’ commitment both inside and outside the classroom, together with the expertise of their teachers and the support of their parents.”
Among those celebrating 10 A*s are Rowland Williams and talented mathematician Zoe Harris. In addition to her clear academic success, Zoe is an active member of several school bands and orchestras, having achieved grade five in both piano and violin. Zoe also enjoys singing in the school’s chamber choir and chorus and has just returned from performing in the school’s music tour in Austria. Zoe competes annually in the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust challenge and this year was awarded gold on the test paper and went on to achieve a merit at the olympiad. Following A-levels in Maths, Further Maths, Chemistry and Physics, Zoe plans to pursue a career in maths or science.
Rosie Broadbent, who achieved nine A*s and an A, is a true all-rounder. In addition to her commitment to schoolwork, Rosie plays the double bass in several school bands and orchestras. She also sings in the school choirs and Stockport Youth Choir and manages to fit climbing, kayaking and cycling into her busy life too. Rosie will take A-levels in Maths, Biology, Chemistry and Physics and with hospital work experience and regular volunteering for Stockport Cerebral Palsy Society under her belt, she has her sights set on a career in medicine. Rosie also pays tribute to her Art teacher, Miss Upton, who encouraged her to succeed in a subject in which she had little confidence and realise her true potential.
Sam Arrowsmith, who also juggles music and drama with homework, attained eight A*s and two A grades. Sam plays trumpet in the school orchestras and bands and is particularly looking forward to his role as Mr Sowerberry in next spring’s school production of Oliver.
Talented musician Harry Vernon, who managed six A*s and four A grades has a varied musical repertoire playing clarinet, bass clarinet, guitar, bass guitar, double bass, mandolin and ukulele. Harry plays in several of the school’s bands and orchestras, and after A-levels in Biology, Chemistry, Business Studies and Music, he hopes to embark on a degree in Popular Music Performance.
Keen animators Alex Longson and Daniel Paigge, who last year became runners-up in the UK Schools Computer Animation Competition, gained 18 A*s and three A grades between them. In addition, Alex took an extra GCSE in Ancient Greek a year early and was awarded an A grade. A highlight of Alex’s year was playing trumpet for the school orchestra in the spring concert at the Royal Northern College of Music. Following A-levels in Maths, Chemistry, Physics and Art, Daniel aspires to go on to study Architecture at University.
Hard-working pupil Fiona Hollin achieved six A*s and four A grades and dreams of becoming a teacher herself. Fiona has made a significant contribution to the musical life of the school, both singing in the choir and playing violin in the orchestra. Fiona will study Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Chemistry at A-level
Sporty pupils Martha Watson, Emily Houghton and Andrew Ward have all managed to combine sporting excellence with academic success. Hockey goalkeeper Martha Watson, who gained four A*s, five A grades and a B has been training with the England hockey team and has been selected to play for the North of England, while also playing for the school’s Under-18s squad, who were crowned Greater Manchester champions 2011. Martha is keen to pursue a career in professional hockey, but still values the importance of academic study and will go on to take A-levels in Geography, Biology, Psychology and English Literature.
Rugby star Emily Houghton, who was awarded five A*s, four A grades and a B has also spent much of her time training with the North of England divisional squad and after being assessed by the England Women’s rugby team, has been offered a scholarship in the sport. As well as these significant achievements, Emily sings and plays guitar in the band Stop Motion Cycle. Andrew, with three A*s, six A grades and a B, has been selected for the North of England Under-16s rugby squad, having also played for Cheshire and the prize-winning school team.
Ecstatic Philippa Simons achieved seven A*s and three A grades while Lara Knowles was awarded eight A*s and two A grades after “working very hard”. Both girls have also managed to combine academic excellence with commitment to the school hockey team. Philippa will go on to study Biology, Maths, Chemistry and Textiles at A-level, while Lara will study French, Maths, Chemistry and Biology, with the intention to study Medicine at university.