ever IGCSE cohort also achieved impressive standards, with 24% grades at A* (9-8) and 56% at A*–A (9-7). Inspired’s success was replicated at A Levels, with its global group average of 21% A* grades, 46% A*–A grades and 84% A*–C grades.

A LEVELS AND IB OPENING DOORS GLOBALLY Students and teachers at the British School in the Netherlands (BSN) also have reason to celebrate. Six in ten A Level results were A*–B. Paul Topping, Headteacher of the school’s Senior campus and Executive Leader at the (BSN) said he was pleased with the school’s Sixth Form results, especially given the circumstances. “As students received their results today, I have observed a resilience, a determination to succeed, and a renewed sense of optimism. It is no coincidence that we place an emphasis on all three of these characteristics during the school year and I am sure their development is reinforced during times of adversity.” For

the International

Baccalaureate, the overall pass rate increased to 78.75% of candidates passing in May 2020 compared with 77.16% in May 2019. This fi gure is likely to increase as the progressive international education body moved to reassure students that no one would receive a lower grade than predicted in line with other examination regulators. The Munich International

School (MIS) posted the highest IB Diploma average in the region. Its MIS Class of 2020 scored an average of 36 points in their IB Diplomas (world average: 29.9) and a 99% IB Diploma pass rate (world average: 79%). Nine in ten subject results were above IB world averages, with student Safa Ahmed achieving a perfect International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma score of 45 points. TASIS, The American School

in England, was also celebrating an inspiring set of outcomes. This year’s TASIS IB Diploma cohort achieved a 98% pass rate and an average point score of 35. In addition, 22% of the students received a bilingual IB diploma, which refl ects the School’s Mission to “nurture intellectual curiosity and

embolden each learner to fl ourish as a principled, open-minded, and compassionate member of a global community.” TASIS’ Advanced Placement

course, which enables qualifying students to study college- level courses in a high school environment and developed by the American College Board, also achieved an 89% pass rate and an impressive average mean score of 3.9; signifi cantly higher than the world average.

PATHWAYS TO UNIVERSITY AND FURTHER EDUCATION These results are all undoubtedly great news, refl ecting the dedication of teaching staff , parents and students. Yet this summer’s grading chaos has meant a change of plan for a signifi cant number of young people. According to UCAS, the UK

university admissions service, some 60,000 young people missed out on their fi rst-choice university place before being awarded the higher of their CAG and moderated grade. Around 15,000 of those originally rejected have since secured their fi rm-choice place. UCAS’ analysis found 7% of this group are from disadvantaged backgrounds, which it says “follows a record-breaking year for disadvantaged students gaining places at high-tariff providers, which at this point in the admissions cycle stands at 6,090 (compared with 5,290 at the same point last year for UK 18 year olds).” Still, 45,000 students have had

to change their plans and either go through clearing or defer, adding strain to university admissions departments already under pressure from the impact of coronavirus on resourcing. BTec students looking to go on to higher education were also caught up in the confusion, with their results delayed by a week.

T LEVELS – ANOTHER GOLD STANDARD? Looking ahead to next year, students taking A Levels and GCSEs in 2021 will face a revised curriculum to refl ect the loss of classroom time during lockdown. Yet questions remain around how moderation errors this year, coupled with addressing concerns around grade infl ation, will impact overall attainment in 2021.

“As students received their results today, I have observed a resilience, a determination to succeed, and a renewed sense of optimism”



The issues are signifi cant in the

context of the global skills and reskilling challenges. However, a broader range of post-16 qualifi cations like apprenticeships and from this September T levels – a vocational programme of study in a range of subjects equivalent to three A levels – mean there is more than one way for employers and young people to target, prepare and thrive in their chosen career path. Verity Davidge, Director of

Central Policy and Skills at Make UK, the manufacturers’ body, was among those who sought to reassure those who missed out on their university place or post-16 study. “Clearly these results are in extraordinary circumstances but, despite this, from apprenticeships, to new T levels, and further education, there still remains a wealth of opportunities for young people to explore,” she said. Underlining the importance

of gaining wider life experience – an aspect accented in many international schools and emphasised in the International Baccalaureate programme with its holistic approach to personal as well as academic development – Verity Davidge said: “While results are important, employers are looking for well-rounded individuals and have always looked beyond just exams grades when recruiting the next generation of talent. As such, in these diffi cult times we would urge employers to continue to make these opportunities open and accessible to all.”

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