Benenden’s top A Level performer is celebrating an incredible seven A* grades.
Sophie Moody-Stuart today achieved five A*s, on top of two she had already earned.
Speaking of her success, Sophie said: “I’m really pleased with my results. I’ve worked exceptionally hard over the last couple of years, and I’m just glad it’s paid off. I wasn’t expecting it to go the way that it has. I just can’t believe it!”
Sophie’s clean sweep of top grades included A Levels in Greek, History, Maths, Further Maths, and Politics, as well as her previously-awarded Chinese A Level and Extended Project Qualification – an additional qualification that involves a dissertation-style research project.
She said: “Some of my subjects I always thought were harder than others. I was definitely hoping that History and Politics would be all right, but I was apprehensive about Greek and Further Maths because they are so difficult. So I was surprised to see that they went well.”
Nationally, this year group faced a particularly challenging environment. Having not sat their GCSEs due to the pandemic, they were the first cohort to sit A Levels as normal. Education leaders had warned this year group to expect lower grades and that university places would be more competitive because of a population rise and higher education destinations adjusting after Covid.
Despite these complications, Sophie said: “I think people have really got on with it. It was difficult not having taken public exams before, we could see that during the exam period, but people really held their heads high.
“If I was taking five A Levels in a normal year the exams would be tighter together so maybe I’ve had it easier than other people, I feel I’ve been very lucky. The pandemic is just one factor.”
Sophie is hopeful that her results will put her in good stead to revisit her first choice for university, studying History and Politics at Cambridge. In the meantime, she is looking to spend the next year working, completing internships, and travelling with friends. “There are some things planned, but I don’t want to jinx it!” she said.
Asked how she was spending her day celebrating, Sophie replied: “I’ve already had a nice breakfast with my family, I’m going out for lunch later and in the evening I’ll be out with friends.
“I’ve spoken to lots of my friends and I feel like everyone’s hard work has really paid off. It’s a lovely way to close off seven years of Benenden.”
Sophie was always proactive in her approach to her education at Benenden. She was one of our School Captains (Deputy Head Girls) over the last year and was responsible for organising and conducting interviews with high-profile politicians Karen Bradley and Jacob Rees-Mogg. In the case of the latter, Sophie and her classmates spotted and approached the Conservative politician walking in London and persuaded him to visit the School. Earlier this year, Sophie also attended an awards ceremony at the Atheneaum Club in London for an essay she wrote for the Foundation for the History of Totalitarianism.