The Headmistress of Benenden School has praised this year’s A Level students who have outperformed the pre-pandemic year for top grades.
As the School enters its Centenary year, Samantha Price also celebrated Benenden’s focus on preparing students for the modern workplace, after particularly strong results in areas which have been highlighted by the World Economic Forum as priorities for future employers.
In results announced today, Benenden’s A* / A rate is higher than in 2019 – which the Government is trying to return grades to. Some 57% of grades were at A* or A this year, up from 55% in 2019. The A* – B rate was also higher, by two percentage points, at 82%.
These results come against a nationwide picture of fewer top results being awarded, with almost 100,000 fewer A* and A grades seen across the country in a Government bid to return results to the levels of 2019, the last year to be unaffected by Covid disruption.
Benenden Headmistress Samantha Price said: “These are an impressively strong set of results and I would like to congratulate our students on their achievements. Nationally, this year’s Year 13 students will feel hard done by that they are the first cohort to be exposed to measures that are deliberately aimed at reducing the proportion of top grades. However, Benenden’s students should feel very pleased with their success.
“This year’s leavers were a particularly delightful year group who are committed to making the world a better place and I have every confidence that they will contribute greatly to the communities they are part of throughout their lives.”
As ever, within the statistics are some standout individual stories. Three students achieved a clean sweep of four A* grades and overall, an impressive 23 students (or 24% of the year group) at Benenden achieved nothing lower than an A grade, while 54 (57%) achieved nothing lower than a B.
Benenden’s Class of 2023 are now heading off to leading higher education destinations around the world, including Oxford, Cambridge, Durham, UCL, Imperial and LSE. Overseas destinations are particularly popular at Benenden, with students holding offers from the colleges of Columbia University, Notre Dame and a prestigious joint programme of Trinity College Dublin/Columbia.
Reflecting the wide range of interests among students, Benenden’s newest alumni will be studying subjects including Liberal Arts, Veterinary Medicine, Social Policy, Economics, Art, Medicine, Law, Materials Science and International Relations.
A Focus on Preparing Students for the Future Workplace
Benenden is particularly pleased that its focus on preparing students for the modern workplace is proving so successful, as borne out by today’s results.
Mrs Price added:“We are committed to constantly evolving our curriculum to prepare our students for the modern workplace, with an emphasis on the creative technologies, financial literacy, global awareness and research skills. Today’s results show that this focus is absolutely working – and ensures that our students will be ready for the workplace of the future in an ever-changing technology-driven landscape.”
The World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs Report identified skills that are most desirable for the 2025 workplace, including technology use, creativity, analytical thinking and problem-solving. Benenden is focusing on developing these skills in its students and these priority areas performed particularly strongly in today’s results, including Art (86% A*/A), Economics (73%), Further Maths (71%), Politics (61%) and the Extended Project Qualification (72%).
In addition to its outstanding A Level offering, Benenden’s innovative curriculum provides students with a wide range of additional short courses in subjects including sign language, investment, Greek mythology in art, journalism, architecture, anthropology and the science of happiness.
All Sixth Formers also complete the renowned Professional Skills Programme, which teaches professional and life skills and includes Inclusive Leadership and the Enterprise Challenge in which students run their own businesses.
- Benenden is celebrating its Centenary in the 2023-24 academic year, having been founded in September 1923. It is marking this landmark occasion with a series of events, the launch of a new curriculum, an historic celebratory book and a free Global Conference – entitled Inspiring Future Female Leaders – which is open to Sixth Formers from all schools on 28 September (more details here)
- Book your place at the next Sixth Form open evening on Thursday 14 September here