Exam Results 2012

These are the results for the various Schools for Penarth

Stanwell School

A level – C grade or above 90%; A or A* 37%

GCSE – C grade or above 75%

St. Cyres School

A level – only results for the year 2011 are up on the school website. No comparative measure provided in the school’s report to the Penarth Times.

GCSE – C grade or above 67% – but no date given so this could be for 2011

St. Richard Gwyn Catholic High School

GCSE – results for 2012 not up on school website, but reported to be 62% receiving 5 grades C or above

Westbourne School

A level – no information on school website

GCSE – No meaningful information on school website and no comparative measure provided in the school’s report to the Penarth Times

Ysgol Gyfun Bro Morgannwg

A level – C grade or above 83%; A or A* 46%

GCSE – 5 grades C or above 87%

The most fascinating aspect of what I’ve managed to glean – or not – about these schools isn’t the results themselves (I’ll come to those in a minute). It’s the fact that most of them have no meaningful information on their websites a full 6 days after GCSE results were published and 13 days following the A level results. Let’s not forget that schools know the results of pupils as a whole a day or two before the rest of us. Now I know that school education is about a whole lot more than just academic results, but you’d have thought that someone in the schools’ administration would have thought it prudent to spend a few hours creating a new webpage to show the world how well they’ve done.

So it’s hats off to Stanwell School and Ysgol Gyfun Bro Morgannwg for keeping us all apprised of your results. I would find the lack of interest in publishing results for the other schools a bit concerning if I were a potential pupil.

Some schools have chosen to focus on individual students in their press reports. Any school, including the worst in Wales, can have exceptional students. The bigger picture is how the school has done in aggregate in encouraging good performance from pupils as a whole. So St. Cyres and Westbourne, you tell us nothing other than perhaps you have something to hide. Although actually Westbourne’s press report tells us something about the school’s view of the world. According to Ken Underhill, Head of School, Westbourne is a “non-selective school”. Try telling that to anyone who can’t afford the £10,000 per year fees.

Of the schools we can meaningfully compare, we have St. Richard Gwyn bringing up the rear at GCSE (62%), then Stanwell (75%) and Bro Morgannwg (87%). And for A level, Stanwell and Bro Morgannwg just about share the honours, with a higher proportion of top grades at Bro Morgannwg but a shade more D and E grades.

Of course the primary distinction is that pupils at Bro Morgannwg come out bilingual as well has having a very high standard of education. And in a job market like today’s, that extra life skill might be just what it takes to get the first crucial placement. 

3 Sylw

Filed under Education, Schools

3 responses to “Exam Results 2012

  1. Cynon Davies

    This is a very interesting and well worth while exercise,although I do detect a pro-state, pro-Welsh-language spin here. Also maybe there’s a glitch somewhere – as your links re Westbourne School seem to point back to a Penarth Times report dated last year – 2011!. As far as Bro Morgannwg is concerned, apart from maths and science, there is no way of accurately comparing marks for exams taken in English with exams taken in Welsh.

    • Thanks Cynon – and you’re absolutely right, I hadn’t noticed that the article was a 2011 article. That’s partly because Westbourne is remarkably coy about its results. I have since found this link about A levels: http://www.penarthtimes.co.uk/news/latestnews/9888383.Westbourne_sixth_formers_well_set_for_future_after_International_Baccalaureate_Diploma_success/ but nothing that can be used to compare performance.
      As for the bias, I’m just reflecting the facts. If Westbourne can’t provide us with meaningful results to compare with the state sector I get suspicious, not least because there’s a hefty price tag to pay. The same holds with St. Cyres – although perhaps both schools will find some time to update their websites once the school term starts. And as for the top two schools, given that their exam results are comparable and I have no reason to believe that non-academic options are substantially different, we come to the one major difference in pupils. One set is bilingual and the other (largely) monolingual. That’s a clear advantage in anyone’s money.
      Finally, the obvious way to compare results is simply to look at the results. The language the exams are taken in is irrelevant because 99% of them will be WJEC exams and therefore translations of the same papers.

  2. Hysbysiad Cyfeirio: Welsh in the Vale | penartharbyd

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