The challenging change in GCSEs this year failed to dent the A-grade performance of Jewish schools across the country, with Immanuel and Hasmonean topping the class in London.
Measuring its “best ever” set of results, fee-paying Immanuel in Bushey set the standard with 70 percent of exams gaining an A* or A grade, with 45 percent hitting the highest mark.
Incoming headteacher Gary Griffin said: “I am absolutely delighted to discover such an outstanding set of GCSE results, which are the best in the history of the College. I congratulate both pupils and staff for their exceptional performance this year and look forward to welcoming the boys and girls into our expanding Sixth Form”.
At JFS in Kenton, results were “at or above” previous levels, with 92 percent of all entries graded A* to C (or 9-4, under the new numerical ordering system). More than a third of the cohort achieved A* or A grades (or equivalent) in eight or more subjects, while 52 percent were graded A* or A (or 9-7).
Outstanding performances were registered by dozens of JFS students, among them Joshua Korber-Hoffman and Benjamin Moss, both of whom took home ten A*s.
School leaders said: “Although comparison of results with previous years is difficult, the 9-4 pass rate in English of 94 percent and in Maths of 92 percent are higher than last year’s A*-C figures.”
At Hasmonean, the percentage of top results was even better, with 60 percent of exams awarded A* to A (or 9-7) grades, while 92 percent were graded between A* and C (or 9-4), the school’s best performance in three years. Among the high achievers were Daniel Mann, Chloe Gold and Sharoni Blass.
Headteacher Andrew McClusky paid tribute to both students and staff, but said academic achievements “is just one of the areas in which we encourage our students to excel,” adding that Jewish studies, community leadership and personal endeavours were just as important.
At Yavneh College in Borehamwood, headteacher Spencer Lewis also oversaw the school’s best performance in three years, with 86 percent of results graded A* to C, compared to 82 percent last year and 85 percent in 2015. More than a third of all exams fell into the top bracket, with 36 percent weighing in at A* or A.
“Examinations are getting even harder than in previous years,” said Lewis. “What is certain is that Yavneh pupils have worked extremely hard and have done exceptionally well. It makes me very proud indeed.”
JCoSS students also had an exceptional year, with 43 percent of results graded either A* or A, and 88 percent marked A* to C (or 9 to 4). Those with nine A* grades included Gil Krikler, Nuri Morad, Antonia Salem and Noam Solomons-Wise.
Headteacher Patrick Moriarty said: “We rejoice at these excellent raw grades, and also at the huge achievements of many students who have far exceeded personal goals and school targets. In English, we added a whole extra grade on average to every student.”
And it was a year to remember at Kantor King Solomon High School in Barkingside, too, with school leaders celebrating “another record-breaking year” and heralding “a remarkable transformation”. Grades in Jewish Studies and Religious Studies were particularly high, with Ishan Gulati, Aimee Cohen, Prince Ahmed and Ashna Pillai all getting seven A* grades.
Headteacher Matthew Slater said he was “proud and delighted for the entire school,” adding: “It is my honour and privilege to lead this magnificent institution.”
Rabbi David Meyer, head of the Partnerships for Jewish Schools (PaJeS) and former head of Hasmonean, said the overall results were “outstanding” and “especially noteworthy given the changes in the curriculum”.
He said: “This reflects the high standards of education being delivered in Jewish schools across the country. Students across the ability range are performing exceptionally well and these results will reinforce the confidence parents are showing in their schools, and in the desire to send their children to Jewish schools.”