A special moment in time as Church High girls celebrate another year of success

15 Aug 2013

Pupils from leading independent girls’ school, Newcastle upon Tyne Church High School, are today celebrating another year of A Level success with over 99 per cent of all results at the top level (A* – C).

With over half of all grades (52 per cent) achieved at the very highest level – A* – A – Church High girls have smashed the national average of 26.3 per cent and exceeded all expectations with a fantastic 10 per cent increase on the school’s own top level results from the previous year. In spite of unprecedented demand for university places, Church High girls had further cause for celebration as once again the vast majority of the girls achieved the required grades for their chosen destination and course.

This year’s success is all the more special in light of the announcement that Church High will merge with nearby leading girls’ school, Central High, in September 2014. Both schools are today celebrating outstanding results, as each school achieved an astonishing 85 per cent of all their grades at A* – B level. Building on the success that both schools continually achieve, the two will join together to form the region’s leading girls’ school – Newcastle High School for Girls – and shape the future of girls’ education.

Church High Head Teacher, Joy Gatenby, spoke of her pride in what has been a milestone year for the school: “I’m so proud of all our girls’ achievements, once again they have exceeded all expectations and richly deserve every success.

“We know that competition for university places is incredibly fierce, making A Level results day one of the toughest and most nerve-wracking in a young person’s life. The fact that so many of our girls have achieved their chosen university place is a tremendous achievement and testament to the commitment they have shown to their studies and the outstanding work of our wonderful staff at Church High.

“The success of our girls and the fact that Church High performs so highly year-on-year gives us fantastic cause for celebration. I am also delighted to hear of the celebrations taking place at Central High this morning and I would like to congratulate their pupils and staff on an outstanding set of results. We have a great deal to look forward to when our school joins together with Central High to form the region’s leading girls’ school, Newcastle High School for Girls, next September.

“Today is all about celebrating the success of our current A Level students and we are delighted that their hard work and dedication has truly paid off. It has been a most memorable day in what has been a momentous year for Church High.”

Naomi Warin, 18, from Gosforth, is the Head Girl of Church High and today achieved an incredible, 3A* and one A. She will now take up her place to study history at Durham University. Speaking on the day, Naomi, said: “I am absolutely delighted with my results, I hadn’t allowed myself to think too much about what I would achieve beforehand but I’m so happy to be leaving Church High on a high! I’ve been at the school since I was just four – there’s such a wonderful family atmosphere here, it’s going to be very strange leaving this behind but I’m excited to take the next step too.

It’s been quite an intense few months studying for my exams, but I’m so glad it’s now all paid off! Hobbies outside of my studies, have helped alleviate the pressure of work, for example, I play a lot of sport including hockey and badminton and I also play the clarinet.”

As Head Girl of Church High, Naomi has been an exceptional leader and has contributed to the shaping of Newcastle High School for Girls as Church High and Central High prepare to come together in September 2014. She added: “It has been an amazing opportunity and a great honour to end my time at Church High as Head Girl and also to play a part in shaping the new school. I’m lucky to have lots of friends at Central and I have got to know the head girl team over there really well. There is a very bright future ahead for all girls from both schools and future generations to come.”

Megan Taylor, 18, from Gosforth, who is part of the Air Cadets Military Youth Organisation, was celebrating today after scooping up an impressive A* in psychology, and two A grades in English and Religious Studies. Megan is looking forward to continuing her time as part of the Air Cadets, whilst also studying psychology at Newcastle University. She said: “I was so nervous before I got my results but I’m absolutely delighted with what I have achieved. I kept logging in online to keep track and find out if I had got into my chosen university, I’m so happy that I did and I can’t wait to take on the new challenge of studying psychology at Newcastle.

“I also have a great hobby as a member of the Air Cadets, which has given me some fantastic experiences and helped to keep me focused during an intense period of revision in the run up to my A Level exams. I’ve been a pupil at Church High since I was four years old and I’ll be very sad to leave but I’m staying in Newcastle so I’ll still be close to home.”

Identical twins, Eleanor and Sophie Harrison, 18, from Gosforth, today achieved almost identical results, with Sophie scooping up one A*, one A and one B and Eleanor picking up two As and a B. The girls are now preparing to be separated for the first time as Eleanor gets set to embark on an exciting new challenge at University in California studying English, whilst Sophie takes up her place studying art and design at Leeds University.

Eleanor said: “I still can’t quite believe that I’m going to be moving to the USA in just a few weeks time, I’m so excited but it still doesn’t feel real. Sophie and I have never been apart for more than two weeks so it’s going to be really hard being so far away from my sister as we are unbelievably close. It is also really great to be able to take on this new challenge and of course we will keep in touch all of the time over Skype and FaceTime.

“I’ve loved every minute at Church High and feel my time at the school has fully prepared me for my new experience and I’m just so happy that I’ve achieved the results I needed to take this next step.”

Sophie said: “I’m going to miss my sister so much, we’re identical twins and have been so close all of our lives and we’re really similar. We’re used to spending every day together and it will be very strange being apart for longer periods of time. I’m already planning my trip to California to visit Eleanor! I also can’t wait to start my art and design course at Leeds University. I love art and this course is so flexible, it will give me a great opportunity to find out which areas I’m good at and try new things. Both Eleanor and I started Church High in year four and we’re really sad to leave all of our friends behind and our wonderful teachers – we’ll certainly all be celebrating our results together though.”

All-rounder, Hannah Thompson, 18, from Newcastle, today achieved a brilliant two A* in politics and geography and an A in art. She will now take up her scholarship to study geography at the University of Manchester. She said: “I wasn’t expecting to get these results at all, especially an A* in politics – I’m so happy. I’ve been accepted into the University of Manchester where I’ll be going on to study geography. I plan on learning abroad for one year, probably in America or Australia and I know Manchester University has a great study abroad scheme. I am really sad to leave Church High and to have to say goodbye to some of the great friends I have made.”

Congratulating the school on its achievements, Central High Head Teacher, Hilary French, said: “While we are celebrating at Central High today, I would also like to offer my congratulations to the girls at Church High School, who have also achieved excellent results. Indeed their A* – B percentage rate matches that of Central High at 85% which is a happy coincidence and a cause for celebration at both schools. Central High and Church High continue to prove that an all-girls education brings success and confidence for our pupils. Undoubtedly, we have a fabulous foundation for the future as we prepare to join together in September 2014 to form Newcastle High School for Girls – a beacon of national excellence and a leading school for this region.”