Posted on 6th September 2016
A very warm welcome to our new School year
A very warm welcome to the 2016/17 academic year at Caistor Grammar School! And a specially warm welcome to those parents who are joining the family of our School for the very first time. There are many new students in the School this week: 102 students in Year 7 and 25 in Year 12. In total, there are 682 students on roll, 306 boys and 376 girls (184 of whom are in our Sixth Form).
Introducing some new members of staff
We are very pleased to welcome a number of new members of staff at the start of this School year. Mr Neil Birch is joining us to teach Design and Technology. Mr Ben Clark will be teaching Mathematics and Computing. Mr James Kay is our new Head of Geography. Miss Corrine Maddy is now full time as she continues to cover Mrs Ellerby’s Maternity Leave. Mrs Rachel Porter is our new Head of Art. We also have two trainee PE teachers with us this year: Ms Charlotte Adamson and Mr Sam Ottley. Mrs Nicola Thompson is our new Examinations Officer. We also have three student technicians supporting different areas of the School; Miss Rachel Robinson will be working in Science; Miss Rebecca Jex in Performing Arts and Mr Sam Downey in PE.
A number of existing members of staff have taken on new roles within the School at the start of this Term. Mrs Shona Buck is now our Deputy Head. Mr Marcus Croft is now one of our three Assistant Heads and his duties will lead to him being known as Director of Studies. Mrs Rachel Dowthwaite takes on the role of Head of History. Mr Chris Frost is now Head of an enlarged department of Mathematics and Computing. Mr Andy Hay is now Deputy Head of Sixth Form.
We are pleased to welcome all our new colleagues and wish all those taking on new responsibilities best wishes with them.
Excellent examination results once again
Overall our 2016 exam results are extremely creditable and very pleasing. At A2 level, our students gained an impressive 72.9% of grades at A*-B, excluding General Studies. This was 0.8% up on last year’s figure and led to us being the second highest ranked school in Lincolnshire in both The Times and The Telegraph’s listings of national schools. We expect the official DfE Performance Tables to record our score at 1025.7 per candidate and this to be one of the highest scores in Lincolnshire and indeed the country this year. At AS level, changes in exam techniques meant that fewer exams were taken but we were very pleased with the results of those that were, with 64.3% of grades being A or B excluding General Studies. At GCSE, we once again enjoyed considerable success which will place us right at the top of Lincolnshire in the Performance Tables. We gained 99% of students with 5A*-C including English and Maths but actually, 100% of students gained 5A*-C passes for the 11th year running and for the 16th year in the last 19. The Government are moving to a new way of recording our results, however. They will record an English pass rate of 100%, a Maths pass rate of 100%, an EBacc score of 83% and an Attainment 8 score of 64.7 which we believe will be the highest score in Lincolnshire. This will then be calculated to gain a Progress 8 Valued Added score. We expect this to be very positive but will not know exactly what it is until December. At the moment, we still have to rely on last year’s score, which was a very impressive +0.46 (we expect this year’s score to be about +0.3). Last year’s score means that on average our students gained nearly half a GCSE grade in Value Added in every single one of their GCSEs.
Outstanding Effort and Attainment grades for the 2015/16 academic year
I am delighted to share with you the results of last year’s internal Assessment/Reports by Year group. They show once again a truly impressive and consistent record of improvement and high achievement with many year records broken.
We carefully record every Effort grade and every Attainment grade that every student gains every single term and put these together to have a measure of progress at a School level, as well as at an individual level. We are thus able to measure how different year groups do in comparison with their older peers and also how they do in comparison with themselves in previous years. I am attaching a sheet to this letter which summarises the performance of each gender in each year group in the School. You can calculate your own child’s effort and attainment grades as follows: we give Effort grades their numerical value, and a 1/2 counts as 1.5 and we give Attainment grades the following values: A* and A both count as 1.0 and A/B counts as 1.5 and A*/A counts as 1.0, B/C counts as 2.5, B counts as 2, C as 3, D as 4 and so on. Add up the total of numbers and divide by the number of subjects to get an average. If this is too much of a mathematical challenge, we will be sending you your child’s averages for each term last year and for each previous year they have been in the School, when we issue their first Assessment of this school year during the Autumn Term 2016. It is good to benchmark our performance, not only against others, but also against ourselves in previous times. I hope this will be a spur to ever greater achievements at the School. It is clear that overall, students have worked harder and more successfully last year than in any previous year when judged by our own Effort and Attainment system.
Our Friends’ Committee exists to support the life of the School and is a very warm and friendly group which cordially invites all new parents to their first Committee meeting of the year next Tuesday 13th September 2016 in Room 06.
With very best wishes