A-level Results Day 2017: Suffolk results on the rise despite reforms

Students receive their A-level results at Stowmarket High School. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Students receive their A-level results at Stowmarket High School. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

Education chiefs have praised the above-national A-level results in Suffolk amid radical changes to the exam system and curriculum.

One Ipswich headteacher called for a period of stability to education and said “we should stop politicising education”.

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In Suffolk, 98.2% of around 3,000 students achieved the overall pass mark of A*-E, down from 98.5% last year, but above this year’s national figure of 97.9%. In the A*-C threshold, the Suffolk figure was 77%, up by one percentage point from last year. The England figure was not available.

Essex fell just below the national mark for A*-E, with 97.7%, but A*-C was 77.5%.

It comes after continued concerns over the toughened-up A-level reforms, triggered by former education secretary Michael Gove. Coursework has been largely scrapped, exams are taken at the end of the two-year course, and content was beefed-up with help from universities.

Gordon Jones, education cabinet member at Suffolk County Council, said: “I’m delighted to see these excellent (Suffolk) results.

“This success is a real testament to the hard work and dedication of pupils, parents, and teachers.

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“Our A-level results have been consistently high year on year. This reflects that schools across the county are continuing to drive up standards. Through our Raising the Bar programme we are improving outcomes for Suffolk pupils.”

The Suffolk figures are predicated on self-reported data from schools and academies to Suffolk County Council.

The results are set to be validated by the Department for Education in early 2018.

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