Students at Burscough Priory Academy have received their GCSE awards today after an unprecedented two years which have included periods of remote learning and a completely changed schedule of assessment.
This year group of students have had more to deal with than most. Not only have they had two significant periods of remote learning, a complete change in assessment process but Burscough Priory was placed into special measures by Ofsted in November 2017, when this year group were in Year 8. This is the year when students should have been building the firm foundations for their GCSE courses ahead. Instead it was a year of uncertainty about the future and the upheaval of change, in a school that was judged inadequate in all areas.
Three and a half years later and you will see a year group that completely embraced change, rose to the challenge of the higher expectations, stricter behaviour and higher targets that the new leadership team (under the Endeavour Learning Trust) introduced. They developed into a group of young people who were ambitious, dedicated to their studies and who demonstrated a genuine commitment to self-improvement. Most striking was their humanity and mutual support for each other and other students in school – they were outstanding role models for our younger students in school.
Mrs MacLaren, Head of School: “We would like to congratulate all of our students. Their resilience, hard work and determination has culminated in the results that have been awarded today. We have seen relief and joy in many of our students who, following disrupted GCSE courses, are now moving onto their chosen destinations. Some of the them will now be able to access even higher-level courses and apprenticeships than they originally considered. In the meantime, they have much to be proud of and these GCSE grades are their springboard to the next stage of their life and the exciting times ahead. All in all, we feel really proud of our 2021 cohort.”
“Since the students have left us and over the past few weeks, many students and parents have contacted us to express their gratitude and appreciation and we are both grateful and humbled in equal measure. More so than ever before, the GCSE results that the students have been awarded are the result of excellent relationships between school, students and families. Thank you does not seem sufficient to recognise the impact of this partnership.”
Mrs MacLaren went on to say, “We must also acknowledge the commitment and hard work of the staff in school and who, along with our colleagues across the Endeavour Learning Trust schools, have worked tirelessly with and for the Class of 2021.”
“The staff would like to wish all of our students continued success as they move onto their new courses at college or on their apprenticeship programmes. We are confident that they will seize every opportunity that comes their way and approach the challenges that lay ahead with positivity and tenacity. They will always be a part of the Burscough Priory family.”
Mrs Gwinnett, Executive Headteacher and overall leader of Endeavour Learning Trust, told us, “Despite much national uncertainty regarding the GCSE grades, and all things considered, we feel that these results are a fair set of grades. We underwent a rigorous process to moderate the original teacher assessed grades, which evolved into these Teacher Assessed Grades, using the careful advice we were given not to overinflate. We fully appreciate that there was never going to be a perfect solution to how these students were going to be assessed this year, but we were in a very good position as a school, due to rapid upward trajectory the school has been on since conversion. They were a remarkable year group and we are delighted they can now move on with their heads held high.”