Pride was the overwhelming for Spalding High School headmistress Michele Anderson as her students overcame course changes to register a remarkable 100 per cent pass rate
Three students, Rebecca Wright, Katie Embling and Rosie Stevenson, are set to start degrees at either Oxford or Cambridge University in the autumn.
But there were other high achievers too, including Tegan Archer whose three A*s in psychology, English and language and biology sealed a place at the University of East Anglia (UEA) to study speech and language therapy.
A understandably emotional Tegan, of Spalding, said: “I was really shocked as they were really, really hard exams and I didn’t think that I’d get into university.
“There was so much revision to do every day, but the staff were really helpful.”
Tegan will be joined at UEA by Jessica Jacob, of Peterborough, who picked up two A*s in biology and chemistry, as well as an A in maths.
Jessica, who will be studying medicine, said: “I was really pleased with my results and I’m glad that the hard work paid off.
“Tegan and I are really good friends so we’re looking forward to going to UEA together.”
Beth Baker, of Spalding, shared her success of getting an A* in maths, A in psychology and B in further maths with mum Lynne who will watch as her daughter goes off to Nottingham University to study psychology.
Lynne said: “Beth probably hoped for all A*s but I’m very pleased as it’s been hard work for her.
“We’ve arranged to go out with the rest of the family this Friday, to the cinema and bowling.”
Remi Clare, of Wisbech, is off to study biochemistry at Birmingham University after achieving an A* in biology and As in chemistry and maths.
She said: “I can’t believe it and I didn’t expect it at all because the exams we so hard, harder than I thought they’d be, so I’m just overwhelmed.”
But Remi’s mum Michele said: “I knew that she’d do it but until you see them, you just don’t know.
“I’m just so proud of her because there’s been a lot of hard work so she deserves it.”
Two Spalding High School students off to Liverpool University are Niamh O’Connor and Emily Ormes, both of Spalding, to study medicine and English with history respectively.
Niamh earned A*s in biology and chemistry, alongside an A in maths, to delight her parents Mike and Pippa who said: “We’re very proud because Niamh has worked really hard in that, for medicine, you have to do a lot of volunteering and additional work.”
Niamh herself said: “My grades were better than I thought they’d be because the exams were harder than I’ve ever done before.
“Even with the hard work that I put into them, it’s a relief to get the results that I did.”
Emily, who collected two As in English and history to go with a B in religious studies, said: “I’m in complete shock because I didn’t expect it at all.
“I was really nervous but now I’m so excited to tell my parents what results I got.”
Jessica Briggs, of Crowland, can look forward to studying graphic design and Leeds Beckett University after getting an A* in product design, A in art and a C in maths.
She said: “I’m pleased after a really, really hard wait, especially on Thursday morning.
“I want to do graphics as a career and, maybe, have my own business.”
Mrs Anderson said: “Our A-Level students achieved a 58 per cent return of A* to B grades which was in line with our expectations for the year group.
“We had a much high number of examination entries submitted for A-Level this year and are proud that all of the students have done so well.
“Whatever steps they now choose to take, we wish them all the very best of luck and success and would like to thank them for making Spalding High School the special place that it is.”
But one of the stories of the day came from Lexi Coote, of Whaplode, who overcame a nightmare year in which she was struck down with tonsilitis and prescribed with antibiotics to get the grades needed for a primary teaching degree at Bishop Grosseteste University in Lincoln.
Lexi earned her place at the same university as Bourne Winter Paralympics multi-medallist Jade Etherington with three A-Levels, much to the delight of mum Mel who said: “She’s struggled all year and been up against it.
“But she did it and it’s a massive relief, as well as a shock to Lexi, to have got some A-Levels to get into university.
“It just shows that you can fight through the hard times.”
Rebecca Wright, Katie Embling and Rosie Stevenson will fly the flag for high-quality Spalding education at Britain’s top two universities in another year when Spalding High School recorded a 100 per cent pass rate at A-Level.
Headmistress Michele Anderson blamed a “completely erratic” period in which the Year 12 AS-Level no longer counted towards the Year 13 A-Level for the slight dip in the number of students collecting A* to B grades.
But despite the dip from 61 per cent in 2016 to 58 per cent this year, Mrs Anderson confirmed that “the very great majority” of her students had secured places at their first choice of university.
Rebecca, of Spalding, who is heading to Keble College, Oxford, to study theology after topping her school’s A-Level results list with four A*s in general studies, history, religious studies and sociology.
She said: “It’s been a very busy year, but I’ve enjoyed it and the staff have been incredible in supporting me.
The exams were harder than I’ve ever done before and even with the hard work that I put into them, it’s a relief to get the results that I didNiamh O’Connor, of Spalding
“I can’t thank them enough and now I can’t wait to start my adventure in Oxford where I’m doing theology, a subject I’ve always been interested in and want to study further.”
Katie, of Wisbech St Mary, achieved three A*s in classical civilisation, English literature and sociology to earn her place at Homerton College, Cambridge, to study education with English.
She said: “I’m ecstatic and over the moon with my results after the stress of exams and I plan to celebrate with my friends and family.”
Another student to collect three A*s was Katie Ridlington, of Donington, whose top grades in maths, further maths and physics have lined her up with a place at Birmingham University to study theoretical physics and applied maths.
Katie said: “I was very surprised by how well I did but I’m obviously extremely happy with my results and can’t wait to study at Birmingham.
“My celebrations will probably include some time spent with my close friends, who have also just received amazing results, and definitely some partying.”
Mrs Anderson said: “Our students work incredibly hard and they have done so well which is why I’m so pleased with them.
“They have done remarkably well in a completely erratic year when the examining bodies shifted the grade boundaries and, to be frank, we didn’t know where the goalposts had been moved to.
“This is the first with the new A2 examination and so we’re really pleased that, yet again, our students have been rewarded with tremendously pleasing results.
“It is a testament to their commitment and hard work, alongside the support of their parents and the dedication of our experienced staff.
Dr Peter Gorton, chairman of governors at Spalding High School, said: “The girls have done very well and they’ve worked very hard, as have the teachers and parents who have supported them.”
“What I saw on Thursday morning was much rejoicing and a lot of people who were very proud of their results, as I was.”