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Dudley College celebrates bumper number of GCSE achievements

Pictured Isaac Adu Mensah aged 18

Dudley College students and staff have been celebrating strong GCSE results today with a significant increase in the number of students securing successful A* – C grades in their GCSE resits results. This follows a huge increase in the number of school leavers and adults retaking their GCSE Mathematics and GCSE English exams this year. The majority of these learners had failed to gain a grade C or above whilst at school.

Of those completing their studies there was an overall pass rate for GCSE resits of 75% in Science, 54% in mathematics and 42% in English. These results are above the national rates for GCSE resits for both young people and adults.

There were more than 800 GCSE retake completers this year with an increase in both the number of 16-18 year olds and adults who achieved A*-C. The number of students retaking GCSEs at the college has significantly risen from 160 in 2014 and 470 in 2015. This increase is due to government priority to raise the level of English and mathematics skills in the UK as we lag behind that of other developed countries.

Lowell Williams, Principal at the college, said: “I am delighted that Dudley College continues to be a place where anyone can come and achieve their dreams, a place of new opportunity for many who have previously failed.

“Gaining GCSEs is the main route to expand individual career opportunities, with a pass at grade C in mathematics and English as essential for most jobs. The majority of our students are young people who struggled at school to secure high GCSE grades. We are delighted that in 9 months over half of those completing have achieved their mathematics and three quarters completing have achieved science. I am especially pleased that the college, in just over 90 hours of study time, has helped support many 16-18 year olds to gain the critical C grades they have struggled to achieve at school.”

Pictured Sean Carbery aged 20

Diana Martin, Assistant Principal at the College celebrated with her students today. Commenting on their performance she said: “Our results are a reflection of the college’s mission to inspire people to think differently about their futures and then help them achieve their dreams. I never lose that sense of satisfaction when we help students to achieve a better and more rewarding future. The challenge of getting more students through their GCSEs retakes has significantly increased for us at the college, as a result of a record number of school leavers enrolling with us. I’m delighted we have supported so many learners to achieve grade C or above as part of this growth.”

One such success story was Sean Carbery (aged 20) who despite achieving a Level 3 qualification in Health and Social Care needed to get a grade C in English to secure his place on a degree course to study Paramedic Science at the University of Wolverhampton. Commenting on securing his vital grade Sean said

“I got a grade D at school in English and I knew it was the one thing holding me back from pursuing my ambition to be a Paramedic. I’m over the moon that I’ve achieved my C it opens up the future for me.”

Pictured L/R Joanna Segree (aged 37) and Lydia Baker (aged 40)

Adult learner, Suzanne Thomas, is embarking on the next steps towards a career in mental health nursing after gaining a C grade in mathematics. Suzanne said: “I’ve always been interested in medicine and now I have the qualifications I need to pursue my dream.” The 39 -year-old is heading to the University of Wolverhampton to study Nursing. She continued: “I did my GCSE with an Access to Nursing course. It was a demanding course, but I always felt I was in a good, supportive environment.” Suzanne’s sons Asher (9) and Isaac (6) were on hand to give their mum a big hug to say well done when she picked up her results today.

“I was both surprised and relieved that I got the grade I needed but I feel very proud that all my hard work has given me the chance to follow a career I know I will enjoy.” She added.

It was second time lucky for students, Isaac Adu Mensah (aged 18) who achieved a C in English Language and Chantae Simms (aged 19) who achieved a C in mathematics. Adu said: “I didn’t do as well in English as I could have at school. I know that employers want a grade C pass in English and maths, so I was determined to do better this time around. I studied English at the college alongside my Level 3 course in motor vehicle and found the support I had in English boosted my confidence in my other studies too.”

Commenting on her time at College Chantae said: “I want to be a teaching assistant so getting a C in maths was vital, as this is a part of the entry criteria for the job. Dudley helped me progress from a Level 2 to a Level 3 in childcare and now they have helped me gain my C, I’m so delighted, I can’t believe it!”