Gibraltar’s A-Level students deliver a 94% pass rate
Students and teachers in Gibraltar celebrated A-Level results yesterday morning with an improved pass rate of 94%.
This was an increase from last year’s overall pass rate of 92% for A* to E grades, but still slightly lower than the UK’s overall pass rate of 97.6%.
This year, nine students made it onto the Gibraltar Scholars list, having achieved three A’s or above.
The results were handed out as from 8am in the morning to give the students plenty of time to secure a place in university through the clearing system.
Education Minister Dr John Cortes congratulated the students and the teachers on their achievements this year.
He said: “Once again we have gone through A-levels and we have got the results and we are very happy with the results.”
“We are happy not just for those who have done particularly well but for those who have achieved the standards that they wanted to achieve which may not necessary be an A*.”
“This is the beginning of the rest of their lives regardless of the results and the department and the schools have worked very hard in preparing them to carry on in their lives and their careers, wherever it may take them.”
“We will be there to encourage those who will continue their educational journey and to support this who want to look at other options. Regardless, they all have a bright future ahead.”
The GSD also congratulated students on their A-Level results.
GSD shadow education minister Edwin Reyes said: “This is a testament to the hard work of students and teachers throughout the year and the support of parents.”
“Once again our children have done us proud in obtaining excellent results.”
“To those who have obtained university places we wish them all the best as they enter the next phase in their education.”
“To those who choose to enter the job market we wish them success in the future.”
There were a total of nine Gibraltar Scholars this year who were looking forward to celebrating their achievements.
Henry Archer achieved three A*s in chemistry, physics and mathematics and is looking forward to going to the University of St Andrews to study chemistry and physics.
Henry, 18, who was the Head Boy at Bayside School, said: “I am looking forward to studying there. My main aim was to get into that university. I went to visit it and I was really excited to go since I saw it.”
He said he liked the close-knit atmosphere at the university, with it being a university in a small town which is by the sea side.
Henry added: “I was really nervous picking up my results. The run up to the exams involved a lot of hard work and a lot of support, mainly my parents.”
“Bayside teachers have really pulled me through each exam as they come, but not just the exams but I’ve also got to meet many cool people over here.”
James Mir, 18, got an A* in fine art, and two A’s in biology and chemistry. He will be going to the University of Bath to study biological sciences in September.
He said: “I am looking forward to the night life and meeting new people when I go to university, getting away from such a small place and also growing up."
James was off to celebrate at a friend’s barbecue and then head to the results party.
David Garcia attained three A*s, in French, Spanish and English, and an A in mathematics.
David, 18, is off the University of York to study law.
He said: “I think university will be interesting and it’s always important to keep learning.”
“It is difficult to get good grades, it is very stressful, but then nothing worthwhile is easy.”
“I think it is nice, and you get a certain satisfaction if you put in a lot of effort into something and it pays dividends.”
Adriana Amor, 18, is a budding journalist and she is off to study sociology and media studies in Keele University.
Adriana attained an A* in Spanish, an A for maths and another for sociology and a C in further maths.
She said: “Doing the A-Levels was stressful, but it was quite a different experience from sitting my GCSEs in Westside School.”
“We could relax, and get to know each other and study at the same time.”
Adriana is looking forward to celebrating with her family and friends, with celebrations continuing into the weekend.
In Westside School, Sarah Lee Baglietto, 18, achieved three A’s for psychology, sociology and geography, and a B for religious studies.
She said: “The A-Levels were very hectic for me. The AS’s weren’t so bad, but this year I felt the pressure.”
“A lot of people advised me to drop a subject, but I felt confident in myself so I carried on until the end, and here we are now.”
She is off to Loughborough University to study psychology, but before that, she went to the beach to celebrate with her friends.
Sanya Chhugani, 18, was Head Girl at Westside School and juggled her studies together with her duties to the school.
She attained three A’s in maths, physics and chemistry, and is off to study a degree in engineering at Loughborough University.
Sanya said: “I am really looking forward to going to university. I think it’s the whole student experience and living independently, and I’m looking forward to studying my degree.”
“As Head Girl, I had a really good student association who helped me. This role helped with my time management skills and I got through this experience.”
Anna Buhler, 18, got an A* for Spanish, an A for English Literature and another A for history, and she is off to study law at the University of Liverpool.
She said she is looking forward to going to study, as she found the A-Level experience to be quite a difficult one.
Anna added: “It’s definitely true that hard work pays off, and it was a lot of hours of stress and studying but in the end I am happy I put in those hours.”
Nuhaila Mkerref, 18, A* in sociology, A for economics and A for history, and she is off to study history at the University of Cambridge.
She said: “I was so pleased when I saw my results, it still hasn’t sunk in.”
The A-Level experience was a lot of work, but “we pulled through”, she said.
TIME TO CELEBRATE
Bayside School pupil Tommy Bell-Jones, 18, achieved an A* in fine art, and B in religious studies and English. He is going to Nottingham Trent University to study animation.
He said: “I love to create things, and I like having an idea in my head and making it tangible for people to see. Those two things together, you can combine them in animation.”
Students in Westside School were looking forward to the celebrations after receiving their results.
Georgie Ellul and Natalia Linares were both celebrating their A and A* grades in Dance, a subject which saw a 100% pass rate in Westside School.
Megan Prescott was looking forward to celebrating with her friends later in the day, which all the other girls agreed to.
Robyn Latin will be studying in London, and said she’s most looking forward to the shopping there.
Bayside School students achieved an overall pass rate of 91% this year, achieving a 100% pass rate in Fine Art, Drama, French, History, Physics, Religious Studies and Spanish.
Headteacher Michael Tavares said: “Another year, and another year where as teachers we all feel very proud of the achievements of our students.”
Mr Tavares said the achievements are not just about the students who have achieved the top grades, but also those success stories “lower down the scale” where students have managed to get the necessary grades to make it to university and start on the next level of their education.
He thanked the teachers for their dedication to their students, and for the hard work they’ve put in over the academic year.
Mr Tavares also thanked parents for standing by the students, and added that exams were a particularly stressful time for students.
The students in Westside School achieved a 98% pass rate of A* to E grades, with a 100% pass rate across many subjects.
Headteacher Michelle Barabich said: “We are very happy with the cross-section of students we have here.”
“They each have their unique personal journeys. They have achieved their personal best and we are very, very proud of them.”
“Each of them has undertaken those challenges that they set out from the very beginning and they have worked very hard.”
“This has taken years invested in what we see today.”
“For all of them it has been a tough journey, and for some of them it has been tougher in the way they have come through, but all of them have to be congratulated because we are so proud of their achievements.”
“This is a very happy day for all of us.”
Students at the Gibraltar College did “exceptionally well”, Principal Leon Abecasis said, achieving a 95% pass rate in grades A* to E, with other subjects being awarded differently.
Mr Abecasis said: “There are some new courses this year such as IT this year, and the students did very well, achieving a 100% pass rate in the subject.”
“It is so new, there aren’t even text books written for the course so teachers have had to refer to old course materials and adapt it to suit this curriculum.”
“If you consider all of that, the fact that the students have done so well is excellent.”
Jacqueline Mason, Director of Education (Designate), and Lionel Gomez, Acting Director of Education, went to all the schools together with Dr Cortes.
Mr Gomez: “It is a very important day, and it’s not just about what’s happening here today but it’s a journey that begins in first school, and we need to remember everybody else who adds in that extra grain of sand that ends with people achieving their goals today.”
Ms Mason said: “Today is a very special day for the students, the families and all the staff who have supported them. It’s not just about the actual grade, but the individual’s education journey and success story and the celebration of students achieving goals, whatever it is they have set for themselves.”