Andrew Marsh, Headteacher said, “Back in 2020, we had very high hopes for these students when they were studying for their GCSEs. They were a very conscientious group, and then abruptly at the age of 16, they had the rug pulled out from under them in the first lockdown. Many then felt they would have to wait a long time for the chance to really prove themselves. In the intervening two years they were in and out of lockdowns, studying in their bedrooms and having to cope with isolation, online learning and long-lasting uncertainty.”
So it was inspiring to see friends supporting each other, students bouncing back from repeated setbacks and staff and students finding ways to overcome Covid challenges together.
The result of all of this dedication and resolve is that nearly 70% of our Highfields Students achieved A* to B grades at A Level which, based on the past three years, really exceeds our expectations. 84% achieved A* to C, and vocational subjects performed equally strongly.
For a long time, more of our students have taken maths A Level than any other subject, and this year nearly 50% of those students achieved an A*. Rebecca Brown, Head of Maths, was particularly proud of the tenacity of students who, she said, had regularly taught each other at lunchtimes, and stayed after school for extra sessions.
Alongside excellent results in Modern Languages, two Highfields students will be starting language degrees at Cambridge this year. Many students are heading to exciting university courses, but we also have students who will soon be starting degree apprenticeships with Derbyshire Constabulary, Fujitsu Computing and Tata Steel in Sheffield. These students have had to prove their personal qualities amidst strong competition.
Liz Cruise, Assistant Head of Sixth Form, said, “This year group have had a fantastic approach to life in sixth form. Their determination and creativity went well beyond studying. In the challenging circumstances, they may have been forgiven for concentrating on themselves. But in fact they have set up new competitions for younger year groups, used music and performing arts not just in the school musical but also in social events and Ukraine fundraising, and they found ways to link up with residential homes and primary schools during lockdown. This flexibility and proactivity will set them up so well for the future. We are very proud of them.”