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GCSE Joy at Malvern St James


Malvern St James Girls’ School, the all-girls independent day and boarding school for 4-18 year olds, is delighted to announce an excellent raft of GCSE results for 2017.

Results overall for A*-C are up again this year to 97%, reflecting a three year trend; this is no mean feat in what has been widely declared by all educationalists as a more rigorous exam year.

Twenty girls (39% of the year group) have achieved eight or more A*-A or 9-7 grades, and others have come very close. Four have received double 9s in their English Literature and English Language papers. Overall, 12% of pupils gained the top grade 9 in English, which puts them in the top 2% of students in the country, and means that their ability surpasses the previous top grade of A*. These are the new, reformed – and more demanding – GCSEs for English Language and English Literature, introduced in 2015.

Mrs Olivera Raraty, Headmistress of MSJ, comments, “The cohort of students receiving their results today are the first to be measured under the new specification. The job has been harder for them, and with no coursework, everything hinges on the final exam.”

MSJ students take the Mathematics IGCSE paper – not the GCSE (the IGCSE is widely regarded as providing a better step-up to A Level Maths, which many girls go on to study) – and this remains on the old system of A*-E grades. In this subject, 69% of girls bagged an A*-A, 92% an A*-B and 100% an A*-C. This is an exceptional result.

In the STEM suite of subjects, in addition to Maths, girls have performed superbly. Biology sees 76% of girls receiving A*-A and 90.5% achieving A*-B; Chemistry, 71% achieving A*-A and 90.5% A*-B; and Physics, 71% A*-A and 100% A*-B.

In Humanities and Social Sciences, Geography has 86% of entries achieving A*-B; History, 82% A*-B; Economics, 77% at A*-A and 82% at A*-B; and Business Studies, 100% A*-B.
Girls have performed well in Languages with French gaining 80% A*-B; German gaining 100% A*-A; and Spanish gaining 77% A*-B. Nationally, there is a real decline in language take-up, so the school is delighted that so many students are opting for languages, doing extremely well in them and continuing on to A Level.

In Creative subjects – Art, Drama, Music, Product Design, and Food and Nutrition – results are similarly strong.

Mrs Raraty continues, “This shows strengths in subjects across the board, and the breadth of interests and talents of our girls.”

“The girls have performed brilliantly. I’m over the moon for them, as for most this is their first taster of public examinations and it has been extra nerve-wracking being the first to experience the reformed system. They have worked hard and it shows. These results are an excellent foundation to move forward on to their Sixth Form courses, where they will specialise in A Level and BTEC subjects that they love.”

Published: September 4 2017

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