Extraordinary year for St Mary’s A Level All Stars

Students at St Mary's School have continued to achieve exceptional results, particularly bearing in mind their broad ability intake, with 22% of grades awarded at A* and 52% of grades awarded at A*-A: their best results at these grades since 2012.

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13th August 2020 — Traditionally, at this time of year St Mary’s Sixth Form, Cambridge – a leading independent day and boarding school for girls – would join together to celebrate the brilliant academic successes of its students. In this sense, 2020 is no different, as its students have continued to achieve exceptional results, particularly bearing in mind their broad ability intake, with 22% of grades awarded at A* and 52% of grades awarded at A*-A: their best results at these grades since 2012.

Students celebrated strong results across the board, including:

  • 100% at A* in Pre-U Mandarin, Spanish, Music, Latin and Arabic
  • 100% at A* - A in Art, French, Drama and Greek
  • 100% at A*- B in Further Maths, Photography, Theology, Classical Civilisation and Computing

Other highlights included:

  • 22% of grades awarded at A*
  • 52% of grades awarded at A*-A
  • 73% of grades awarded at A*-B
  • 90% of grades awarded at A*-C
  • 99% of grades awarded at A*-E

However, the story of 2020 is about much more than results. This year, St Mary’s is celebrating the resilience and optimism students have shown, in the face of disappointment and disruption created by Covid-19. In their response to this unexpected life challenge, the class of 2020 are officially ‘All Stars’.

The past months have demonstrated the real value of the broad set of St Mary’s values and attitudes that girls develop, such as collaboration, agile thinking, compassion and perseverance. Following the closure of Sixth Form in March, students coped remarkably well.

Supported by teachers, girls embraced a rapid shift to remote learning (which by many was deemed ‘best in class’ in terms of provision in Cambridge) and have been proactively preparing for university level study. They also came together to support one another. Reflecting on the past few months and her time at St Mary’s, Head Girl at St Mary’s, Molly Punshon said: “I am so glad that all those years ago I chose to go to St Mary's. Not only has it enabled me to achieve fantastic GCSE and A Level results, critical to the next step in my education, but it has also given me some of the most enjoyable, wonderful years of my life! Though I have now officially left St Mary's, I still feel part of the most extraordinary community and it has amazed me how that community has really pulled together over the difficult last few months.” Molly is excited and ready and raring to go to study English and Drama at the University of Exeter.

Leaver destinations for 2020 include Medicine at UEA, Law and Spanish at Bristol, Engineering at UCL, History at York and Conservation Biology and Ecology at Exeter.

Punyanuch Imamnuaysup, who is leaving St Mary’s with 2 A*s and an A, is excited to be going on to UCL to read Engineering. She commented: “My time at St Mary’s was very memorable. This community has always been very supportive to me during my time here.”

Maria Kamara, Head Boarder added: “My time at St Mary’s has been filled with so many opportunities and unforgettable memories. I have been given lots of support and encouragement from my amazing teachers through additional help when required and I have certainly seen myself grow academically. Most importantly, I have made life-long friends who have made my experience all the more special.”

Head of Sixth Form, Ruth Taylor commented: “I’m so proud to see this year’s leavers forging ahead to pursue their ambitions with such determination. With strong academic results matched by great strength of character, I’m excited to see what they all achieve next.”

St Mary’s Sixth Form is now looking forward to welcoming back our next group of students to full-time, face-to-face classes in September. Whatever the rest of 2020 may bring, St Mary’s is ready!

Headmistress of St Mary’s School, Cambridge, Charlotte Avery noted: “I am so proud that yet again our students have achieved outstanding results, especially in the face of, and in despite of, the challenges that this year has brought. This year has brought many of our core values to the fore, such as friendship, community and hope. Our 2020 leavers have demonstrated these values so brilliantly. I commend them on being true St Mary’s girls.”

About St Mary's School, Cambridge

In our dynamic, supportive school community, every girl is known, valued and inspired. Founded in 1898, we offer an education built for girls, that allows their intellectual and social confidence to flourish.

A St Mary’s girl is known for her confidence and curiosity, her community spirit, her agile mind, her resilience and drive. Our approach to learning empowers girls to aim high in life, to follow their dreams and to make a positive contribution to society.

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