Unprecedented and Challenging Times - Extraordinary and Inspirational Students

On behalf of the whole School community, I would like to congratulate all of our Year 13 students on their hard work and successes during their A level studies. Alongside their academic achievements, this year group should also be recognised for how well they have dealt with the unprecedented circumstances in which they found themselves. The past few months have been filled with frustration, with students across the country missing out on a traditional rite of passage.

In a historic first, students were not allowed to take their A level summer examinations because of Covid-19. Instead, results were awarded based on centre assessed grades from schools, past school performance and a moderation process by examination boards, established and overseen by the examinations regulator, Ofqual. This process was changed, on the eve of results publication, by the Secretary of State for Education, drawing specific attention to Year 13 mock results, to create a “triple lock”. Our Year 13 students, as all students up and down the country, are role models of fortitude and grace – what extraordinary and inspirational young people they are, with all that they have had to endure. The complexities of this year’s national results process mean that some students will have to wait for clarity about mock result appeals before they can finalise their university places.

There are so many individual stories of hard work, commitment and ability tied up in this year’s results and we commend all involved for everything they have achieved. The School has a long tradition of success in preparing students to read Medicine and Dentistry. This year, several students will study these courses at a variety of prestigious universities, including the University of Cambridge where we have seen one of the highest number of students admitted to read Medicine, and we have no doubt that the NHS will benefit hugely from their abilities and commitment.

We are also delighted that one student will read Natural Sciences at Cambridge; with similar strength in depth shown by students who will read languages, English, Geography, Human, Social & Political Sciences, Theology and History at Oxford or Cambridge.

The strengths of both students and teachers, and the significance of the outstanding support of parents, is further shown by the impressive results achieved in creative and languages subjects:  Art, Theatre Studies, French, German, Spanish and Latin all saw strong grades. Our Art students rose fantastically to the challenge of lockdown with a brilliant online exhibition and accompanying catalogue, which showcased their stunning work. This speaks to our established commitment to the arts, as a Gold Award Artsmark school.

There is no doubt that the many and varied successes at CCHS are the result of the diligence and commitment of our students, who are guided and encouraged by a tremendously supportive school community that includes parents, governors, our Parents’ Association, staff, alumnae and our exceptionally talented teaching staff – all of whom deserve acknowledgement, thanks and congratulations. This year, more than any other, saw the School spirit come to the fore.

2020 successes, which reflect a true community endeavour, are further evidence that we have made the right decision in pursuing an ambitious growth strategy, with more students joining the School and our campus development project. This September we will begin our journey to increase to six forms of entry, with more girls than ever before enjoying the specialist teaching offered by the school.

We wish our Year 13 students the very best as they prepare to start their undergraduate studies, and we look forward to staying in touch with them all as part of our thriving CCHS Alumnae network.

Mr S Lawlor, Headteacher