Students at Bayside, Westside and the Gibraltar College have today been issued with their A Level / Level 3 examination results. Results were released electronically to enable young people to receive these in the environment of their choosing and to facilitate their subsequent follow-up with communication to universities should this have been required.
This year sees students in our three HMGoG secondary institutions having secured a total of 743 pass grades, each one representing an individual story and learning journey. 679 of these pass grades were achieved across 24 different traditionally-assessed subjects, with a further 64 passes being achieved within the 4 vocational qualifications offered. Of note are also the large number of students, 13 in total, who have attained three A grades or above, giving them the status of Gibraltar Scholar.
Whilst the Department of Education recognises the currency that successful completion of such qualifications provide, and very much celebrates the achievements of all students receiving results today, they strongly believe that students’ successes extend far beyond their examination results. “It is important that we recognise and celebrate the wider skills and experiences that these young people have developed and shared throughout their educational journey thus far, and that we actively acknowledge that examination results are but one facet of what these young people take with them as their school career draws to a close,” expressed the Director of Education, Keri Scott.
The results table below compiles the results achieved by students across all courses offered by HMGoG’s Secondary School Consortium offering at A Level / Level 3. As students from the 3 host institutions Bayside, Westside and the Gibraltar College are able to select from the full range of courses offered throughout the Consortium, the Department of Education believe it was important to publish the results in a format that better aligns with the provision. Notwithstanding, the Department of Education very much recognises the unique qualities and strengths of each educational setting and will continue to champion these within the Consortium offering, ensuring that all young people have equitable access to all courses and are given the best opportunities to succeed no matter their individual areas of interest and their chosen pathway. “Our young people are truly fortunate to be able to choose from such a wide offering at this level” stated the Director of Education. “Our schools really help to nurture skills, knowledge and understanding in many distinct fields, providing our community’s young people with an increasingly broad platform to higher education and/or employment”.
This year sees Ofqual complete the second step of its ‘return to standards’ plan post the pandemic. This has involved examination boards adopting a series of protective measures in the lead-up to examinations and within the examinations themselves, as well as in the awarding of results, in order to safeguard student performance despite the disruption to schooling that these young people experienced at different points throughout the pandemic. Careful processing of the examinations at examination board level is hoped to help ensure that standards of achievement within each subject and within each grade are maintained. In September 2022, Ofqual announced its aim to ‘return to pre-pandemic standards’ in this summer’s GCSE, AS and A Levels. There has been nation-wide concern across the UK as to what impact this objective might actually have in real terms, and uncertainty as to what this would actually mean for students and schools. We are delighted to report that the examination results across the three Government institutions have managed to hold a notable overall pass rate of 93% across the three Consortium educational settings. Whilst last year’s results achieved an overall pass rate of 95%, it was acknowledged that 2022’s results constituted a mid-step return to pre-pandemic standards after the CAG and TAG years, in which student results were awarded via very distinct mechanisms to those employed in a typical year with established examination procedures. This year’s overall 93% pass rate is very much in line with the overall pass rates in the pre-pandemic years of 2017, 2018, and 2019, which were 92%, 94% and 94% respectively. A spokesperson for the Department of Education also pointed out how there are often rather noticeable differences to cohorts, with these making it somewhat tricky to compare results from year to year. Ultimately, it is our responsibility to look at each young person in their own right and celebrate all the successes that they have achieved throughout their learning journey and indeed that we hope they will continue to achieve within their future endeavours.
Although our educational settings have enjoyed uninterrupted schooling this last academic year, it is important to point out that A Level / Level 3 students achieving results today have completed their GCE examinations this year without ever having taken or experienced their formal GCSE summer examination sessions. As a result of the extended impact of the pandemic, these students have missed out on the experience and familiarisation with formal examination processes that students typically first experience at GCSE. The rigour and stamina required within the GCSE formal examination series help students to develop their approaches to revision and to examinations, as well as their maturity as a learner, ultimately helping them to hone their examination technique. Schools have, of course, prepared these students as extensively as possible, and endeavoured to make up for the opportunities missed as a result of the 2 covid-impacted years. Students and teachers have had to work extremely hard to ensure that the students were as well prepared as possible and able to demonstrate their ability under formal examination conditions.
Although there will be many celebrating their achievements today, and those who are excited about where they are headed to next within their continuing learning journey, inevitably there will be others who will be disappointed with their results and/or unsure as to what their next steps should be. There is a wealth of guidance and support that young people can tap into to assist them no matter what position they find themselves in. Teachers in schools as well as staff at the main office of the Department of Education are on hand to advise, support and provide guidance and assistance to all students, from those who have secured a place at University to those who may be continuing to seek a place through the clearing process or who may now find themselves looking at other options.
The Department of Education extends its thanks to its teachers and other school staff, who have played a key role in supporting and inspiring these young people to work towards realising their potential. It is important to remember that whilst the A level/Level 3 students’ journey culminates with the completion of these qualifications in the last 2 years of their school career, there will be many other teachers and school staff who have supported these young people at different stages of their learning journey, and we thank everyone who has played a part in each student’s pathway at each stage of the way, from Nursery and Reception, through all the Primary years to the early years at secondary and GCSE/Level 2. Every individual involved in the learning journey of these young people has helped to contribute, guide, support, nurture and develop them along the way. It is critical to also recognise the important role played by parents, carers and families, and celebrate their support of these young people too. We thank everyone who has helped to form supportive teams around the young people whose day it is today, and we applaud the young people for all their successes, both within their examinations and beyond.
Minister for Education, John Cortes, shared some reflective thoughts: “Working in Education is so uplifting, especially when you see young people bettering themselves throughout their school career. A-level exam results are one way in which they can see how they have done so. It no longer is about competition between schools or between friends. Exam results day is a celebration of years of work and the first day of the rest of these young people’s lives. Whether they avail themselves of a scholarship, or defer, or choose any other option, their days in our wonderful schools under the guidance of outstanding teachers will have been instrumental in making them all who they are, who they will be. And with those uplifting thoughts in mind I congratulate each and every student at this stage of their lives’ journeys.”
A breakdown of results is available here.