There have been smiles from students, teachers and parents across Flintshire as the classes of 2017 received their A-level results today.
The results from the Welsh Joint Education Committee (WJEC) showed that for examinations taken with them, 97.8 per cent of entries received pass grades A* to E.
The Flintshire 2016 figure was 97.2 per cent at this same stage.
The proportion of grades in the A* to C range is 72.7 per cent in 2017 compared to 73 per cent of entries achieving these grades in Flintshire in 2016.
And 18.2 per cent of Flintshire WJEC entries resulted in A* and A grades compared to 14.7 per cent in 2016.
Cllr Ian Roberts, cabinet member for education, said: “Having received the information for entries with the WJEC Examination Board, the council warmly congratulates all the students on their hard work and success. As we celebrate these results, we recognise the commitment and professional support of our schools and teachers in preparing their students for their exams and also the support given by their parents and carers over many years. I am particularly pleased with the positive increase in the number of awards at A* and A grade.
”Flintshire’s students have worked hard to pursue demanding programmes of study. I am delighted for all of them, and wish them every success in their chosen future pathway”.
Interim chief officer for education and youth, Claire Homard, added: “These pleasing results are a result of the hard work and perseverance Flintshire’s students show towards their studies. I congratulate them all, and thank their teachers, parents and carers for their encouragement and support. The results are good news for Flintshire’s young people and we wish them every success as they take on new challenges, whether at college, university or the world of work.”
Here's a round-up of how schools performed in Flintshire:
ST RICHARD GWYN, FLINT
St Richard Gwyn Catholic High School staff were “delighted” with the achievements of their Sixth Form students.
At A-level, the pass rate was 98.2 per cent with an increase in A and A* grades.
Kate Foster-Noble, member of staff at St Richard Gwyn, believes this reflects the “outstanding” effort made by all students and their teachers.
All students who applied for university were also successful in gaining a place.
Some of the school’s best successes were Sophie Davies, Harry Beaumont, Corey Jones, Rokas Bakutis and Harry Robinson, who all achieved at least three A/A* grades.
They were all involved in the school’s Seren programme for gifted and talented students.
Paul Heitzman, headteacher, said: “I really enjoyed being in school this morning to see the students receive their results. They are a credit to the school. All the staff are very proud of their success.”
Top performance levels were maintained “yet again” by the sixth form students of the Alun School yesterday on A level results day.
Dr Tim Erasmus, head of sixth form at the Mold school, said “I am delighted to report that this year’s results have maintained our consistently excellent track record for top levels of performance. We have one of the largest sixth forms in Wales with around 500 entries. Nearly a quarter of all A-level grades were A* or A grades.
”Many of our students have gained places at prestigious universities both in the UK and abroad.
”I would like to congratulate all of our students and their teachers, both here and in previous schools, who have contributed to this outstanding level of success.”
Jamie Hogg, of Mold, was one of the Alun school’s top performers as he achieved three A* grades, two A’s and a B and will read Natural Science at Cambridge University.
Dominic Neave, of Nannerch, and Matthew Prichard, of Connah’s Quay, scored three A*s in their A-levels.
Dominic will go on to study Vetinary Medicine at Cambridge University and Matthew will read Maths at Warwick University.
Teleri Roberts, of Rhes y Cae, achieved three A-levels of one A* two As and a B and will study Vetinary Science at Liverpool Univeristy.
Another Oxbridge success story from Mold Alun was Fiona Patterson, of Saltney, with three As and is going on to study English at Oxford University.
Students achieving 3As or higher also included Sarah Davies (A*AA), Toby Fensome (A*AA), Shannon Gates (AAA), Sophie Gaunt (A*AA), Lawrence Henry (A*A*A), Ceri Hughes (A*A*A), Tyler Hughes (A*AA), Laura McNally (A*A*A), Alex Terry (A*A*A), James Wait (A*AA), Molly Williams (AAA) and Kieran Woodland (AAA).
HAWARDEN HIGH SCHOOL
Simon Budgen, the new headteacher of Hawarden High School, was delighted to report that there were high levels of success achieved by the Year 13 students in the A level exams this year.
Ninety-nine per cent of students at the school achieved their Welsh Government Level 3 Threshold, gaining at least two A level passes.
Mr Budgen also said there was a “pleasing proportion” of high grades being awarded, with almost half being A*, A or B and “well over” two thirds of grades being A* to C.
He wanted to congratulate all the Year 13 students, their parents and teachers, recognising “the hard work that has been invested in order to achieve these results”.
Lewis McDonald and Samuel Robertson, of Hawarden High School, achieved outstanding results of three A* grades and one A.
Lewis will go on to read Aeronautical Engineering at Imperial College, London and Samuel, head boy of the school, has secured a sponsored degree apprenticeship in Aeronautical Engeneering with Airbus.
Raphaelle Soffe, head girl of the school, achieved two A*s and two As and will go on to study at Havard University in Massachusetts, America.
Other notable successes highlighted by the school were Ffion Jones (A*A*A), Alek Walsh (A*A*A), deputy head girl Eloise Bull (AAAB), Adam Kerrod (AAAB) and Niamh Yale-Helms (AAAB).
CASTELL ALUN HIGH SCHOOL, HOPE
A record number of students will go on to Oxford and Cambridge courses from Castell Alun High School in Hope.
A quarter of all grades awarded were at A or A*, nearly half came out at A* - B and more than three quarters achieving three or more A* to C.
Stand out performers include Dan Goldsmith, who secured three A* grades and full marks on two of his papers.
He will now go on to to Imperial College London to read Geophysics.
Callum Riordan, having moved from Australia with the hope of studying Sport and Exercise Science, fulfilled his dream as his efforts secured him a place at Loughborough University.
Headteacher, Graham Hughes, said: “This is a fantastic achievement for all concerned with Castell Alun.
“We are delighted for all our students.
“Our Sixth Form continues to flourish and we are truly indebted to all parents and staff who have tirelessly supported these young people in achieving such great results.
“We wish every student continued success and happiness as they move on to pursue their chosen careers.”
A near perfect result was being toasted at Coleg Cambria with almost 100 per cent of students securing A* to E grades with 80 per cent at A* to C.
It is the first full year of A-levels at the college's new Deeside 6 centre that opened in September 2016.
Sue Price, principal at Coleg Cambria, said: “I would like to congratulate all our sixth formers on their incredible achievement this year and wish them every success for the future.
“These results reflect a tremendous amount of hard work by the students as well as the dedication and expertise of our teaching staff who have worked tirelessly to support and challenge them to achieve their potential.
“We are also very proud of the excellent achievement of our lower sixth learners who have guaranteed an overall pass rate of 93 per cent with 67 per cent higher grades.”
David Jones OBE, chief executive of Coleg Cambria added: “We are delighted with the best results ever for Coleg Cambria which truly highlight the quality and excellence of our A-level provision.
“Many congratulations to our students at both Yale and Deeside 6 forms who achieved the success they deserve – we are very proud of each and every individual performance.”
FLINT HIGH SCHOOL
One hundred per cent of A-level students at Flint High School have secured places at their first choice university.
Staff also reported that 95 per cent of students met the Welsh Government Level 3 threshold with a quarter of all entries graded at the highest A* and A grades. A third of students achieved an A*/A or equivalent.
Amongst the high achieving girls at Flint High, Niamh Kinnair will be going to Cardiff University to study Optometry, Amber Simpson will be heading to America to study a degree and masters in sport after securing a scholarship at Florida State University (FSU), and Holly Hughes will study Paramedic Science at Glasgow University.
Of the boys, Ryan Logan will be the first person to be taking up a brand new apprenticeship in IT at Tata Steel, Josh Price is going to the University of Chester to study Computer Science, and Ebin George and Shay Davies are both going to Liverpool John Moores University to study Sports Science and Sports Coaching respectively.
Sian Williams, head of sixth form, said: “I am extremely pleased with the results. This is a great achievement considering the changes to the structure of the A Level qualification this year, which is now more exam based and has much greater course content.”
“The fact that all of our students have secured their first choice of university is fantastic and a credit to their hard work. I am very proud of all their achievements and wish them every happiness and success for the future.”