Sixth Form Celebrate Success at Leighton Park School

14 Aug 2020

Nikki Wilson (A*A*B) headed to the Royal Northern College of Music and Ella Starkey (BBB) destined for Business Studies and Geography at Nottingham

It has not been an easy year for those taking public examinations and press speculation on the 2020 A Level results has been rife ahead of the big day.

However, students, at Leighton Park School, Reading, had great cause for celebration yesterday as the cohort with 100% pass rate achieved an impressive 69% A*-B with 17.4% achieving the highest A* grades, against a national average of 8.9%.

Matthew Judd, Head, commented, “Set against the background of incredibly difficult circumstances our Upper Sixth students achieved spectacular outcomes. They have had to show unprecedented resilience and patience in the run up to these results. They have achieved all we wanted for them in securing outstanding university placements, with all gaining their first or second choice. Their results, supported by staff, are excellent, the best in recent times. I congratulate the whole community for their outstanding efforts in the A Levels, IB and BTECs.”

Top scoring subjects included Chemistry 100% A*-B, Computer Science 100% A*-B, Design & Technology 83% A*-B, Further Maths 100% A*-B, Physics 80% A*-B and Biology 71% A*-B. The School, having won the Award for Excellence in STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Arts and Maths) Education 2020 this summer, combines the arts and creativity with the rigour of analytical subjects. Combining these habits of mind with innovation, teamwork and creative problem solving provides students with valuable skills for life and future employment as well as academic success.

“I’m delighted to have got into Manchester to study Medicine.” enthused Adriana Ioannou, “I’m thankful for all of my teachers at Leighton Park. It has been a rough ride for the last few months but I’m thrilled as Medicine has been my dream.”

Shaun Uppal, who is off to study Politics and International Relations added, “If you want to enjoy your studies and do well academically then Leighton Park is the best school to lay that foundation. I’m really looking forward to the university experience and am thinking of doing a law conversion or LLM at Oxbridge after my undergraduate degree at UCL.”

Music, always a strength of the school, has been particularly impressive this year with five talented students securing places to continue their musical careers, including at the country’s top conservatoires. “I would love to go into performance but am also interested in teaching at university level.” said Nikki Wilson, who played Velma in the School’s Spring Term production of Chicago. “I’m really looking forward to going to the Royal Northern College of Music.”

Fellow Musician, Michael Rincon, commented, “I don’t know what to do now; it would have been easier if I’d got worse results! I don’t know whether to choose Leeds or Southampton. I need to check through the courses now and see what’s best for me. One of my main interests is film composition at the moment.”

Deputy Head (Academic), Karen Gracie-Langrick, noted the cumulative A*-A grades were 46.6% against a national average of 27.6, reflecting, “This year was a strong cohort of students, and we are all delighted that the hard work and quality of teaching and learning has fully contributed towards these excellent student outcomes, even in what has been a difficult and unprecedented set of circumstances this year.  It is also worth celebrating that a third of our students gained grades equivalent to ABB or above. In addition, there were also excellent first set of results obtained CTEC Sport, in which all students gained Distinction* or Distinction.”

The results follow the School’s IBDP successes of early June when Leighton Park students gained an average of 35 points against a worldwide average of 29.9. Head of Sixth Form, Helen Taylor and IB Co-Ordinator, commented: “The Leighton Park Sixth Form is unusual in offering both A Level and the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. The breadth and structure of the IBDP really suits some of our students and the IBO values of open-mindedness, international co-operation, self-reflection and risk-taking dovetail perfectly with Leighton Park’s Quaker values.” Each of the School’s IB students seeking to start University next year achieved their first choice of course at their first-choice university.

Leighton Park’s success at Key Stage 5 is recognized by the Government’s league tables for Sixth Form Academic Progress. The latest figures show Leighton Park to be the top performing school in Berkshire and 27th in England for academic progress, one of only eight schools nationally to appear in the top 100 every year since the league tables began.

Through the extensive co-curricular programme, the nurturing pastoral care and the Quaker ethos, students are given the confidence and courage to push themselves to their cerebral limits without fear of failure or judgement. Reflecting on the latest figures, Matthew Judd, Head, said: “Our continued success is a tremendous affirmation of our approach at Leighton Park and our commitment to forming young people of real character and confidence. Outstanding academic results are very much the consequence of the School’s distinctive approach rather than the object.”

If you are considering studying A Levels or the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme, the next virtual Sixth Form Open Evening at Leighton Park School is on Tuesday 13th October. Book online at or contact Admissions via or 0118 987 9608.