A troubled year has ended on a high at Downham Academy as its students celebrated record A-level results.
The school has had to find a new sponsor and been deemed inadequate following a critical Ofsted report last month.
But the same document praised the school’s sixth form department as a “beacon” and that verdict was reflected in the results that were published today.
A total of 71 per cent of papers recorded top A* to C grades, up six per cent on the total for 2016.
Vice-principal Peter Salt said: “I am particularly pleased that our students were able to deliver the best A-level grades we have ever achieved.
“Despite the new changes to A-levels introduced this year, our students have maintained the percentage of A* and A grades as 2016.”
He added: “Supported by a fantastic staff team who have also gone the extra mile, the students worked incredibly hard to achieve these good results.
“Most will be taking up their first place offers at university whilst others look forward to bright futures through higher apprenticeships or job opportunities.”
Among the school’s top performing students were Sam Langley, who achieved two A* and two A grades, James Slatter (AAAB), Katy Beeton (A*AB), Robbie Belham (A*AB), Laura Masiulionis (AAB), and Rosie Smith (AAB).
Meanwhile, students at the Nicholas Hamond Academy in Swaffham are also celebrating following a rise in the number of students achieving top grades.
A total of 50 per cent of students achieved A* to C grades compared to 38 per cent last year.
And, out of 70 per cent of students who applied to university, all bar one, who has since been accepted to study Law by two alternative universities, secured a place at their first choice university.
Acting principal Martin Booth said: “We are very proud of our awesome students’ hard work and commitment to their studies.
“We are pleased to have been able to play our part in enabling them to confidently take their next steps towards further personal and professional success in the future. We wish them luck.”
Among the academy’s top performers was Gabby Copeman who is now set to study history at the University of East Anglia after achieving an A and two B grades.
Jordan Taylor achieved the equivalent of three A* qualifications in her level three BTEC health and social care course and is planning to take a gap year in Australia while she considers her options.
Ian Cleland, chief executive of the school’s sponsor, the Academy Transformation Trust, said: “The trust is delighted that once again The Nicholas Hamond Academy students have performed well at A-Level.
“These results demonstrate that all students have achieved a worthwhile outcome from their sixth form studies. The distinction plus performance in applied subjects is well above expectations.
“Congratulations to all students and staff who have worked so hard to achieve these impressive results.”