Swindon’s White Horse Federation celebrates GCSE results

By Anita Jaynes on 25 August, 2017

Schools across the White Horse Federation are celebrating excellent GCSE results despite grades falling nationally and reports that this year’s exams were the hardest since the late 1980s.

Across the four schools teaching to GCSE level, results have continued to increase and pupils have achieved above their expectations –  with over 20 students achieving excellent level nine grades and one student taking his GCSE Maths two years early and obtaining a level five.

The White Horse Federation (WHF) is a Multi-Academy Trust of 18 primary schools, secondary schools and special schools across Swindon, Wiltshire Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire and includes The Ridgeway School and Sixth Form College, Devizes School & Sixth Form College, Gloucester Academy and The Peak Academy.  It was set up by Swindon-based teachers Dr Nick Capstick OBE and Lauren Costello OBE in 2012.

With a new GCSE grading system in place, students are now marked from 1 – 9 in Maths and English instead of the previous A* – G grading.  A level four is now a pass grade, equivalent to a C and level nine has been introduced for the highest achieving students as the equivalent of an A**.

At The Ridgeway School and Sixth Form College, 71% of students achieved the standard pass of at least level four in English and Maths, with 69% achieving five grades of between levels four to nine, formerly A* – C.  Impressively a high proportion of students received some of the highest grades possible in Maths and English, with 31% of Ridgeway students obtaining level seven or above, the equivalent of an A or higher, in their Maths GCSE, and 22% achieving these results in their English GCSEs.

Students also took home 16 level 9 results across English, English Literature and Maths.

Having been part of the White Horse Federation for less than a year, Devizes School has seen an increase in the number of their pupils passing their GCSEs.  57% of pupils achieving levels of four or higher in their GCSEs including Maths and English, compared to last year’s results of 55%.  Four pupils also received the top level nine grade in their English GCSEs.

Gloucester Academy achieved an outstanding 17% rise in the number of pupils attaining level four or above in their results including Maths and English.  A-Level results this year were also equally as impressive with 73% achieving A*-C grades.

At The Peak Academy, a specialist school in Dursley, Gloucestershire, which provides education and support for young people with social, behavioural and mental health needs, the level of students achieving five qualifications continued to grow from 57% to 81%, including a Year Nine pupil who took the Maths exam early achieving a level 5, equivalent to a B in the former grading system.

Additionally, pupils have also received a number of national Engage in Their Future awards this year, including National Champion for Literacy, National Champion for Sports Personality and the National Winner for Personal Progress.

Dr Nick Capstick OBE, CEO of The White Horse Federation, said: “Results across the WHF have been very pleasing this year. We’re immensely proud of the number of pupils who have achieved level nine – the highest results possible, as well as everyone who has worked hard to meet and exceed their targets.

“All of the schools across the WHF are committed to providing a first class education to the young people in our communities and to support them to achieve what they’re capable of and more. We pride ourselves in offering great leadership, great learning and great support for all our staff.”

For more information on the White Horse Federation, visit www.thewhitehorsefederation.org.uk.

Pictured above: Dr Nicholas Capstick