Welcome everyone to the new school year and welcome back from the summer holiday. Whether you went near or far, I hope that it was a long and refreshing break for you. Welcome to the families joining us for the first time with Year 7 and/or Year 12 students. We hope that the school year ahead of us all is a happy and successful one.
Firstly, a warm welcome to staff joining us this September: Mr Azad joins the Computing department, Mr Cirale and Mr Mouyis join the Maths team, Dr Jones and Mrs Golkari are teaching in the Science department, Ms Davidson joins the PE department, Dr Pluta joins the Music department, Mrs Tymoszuk joins the RS team, Mrs King is teaching Spanish and French, Mrs Macdonald is our new SENCo, Mrs Pitta a Cover Supervisor and Mrs Fernandez-Rosenlehner, Miss Buzasi and Miss Lucas are Learning Support Assistants, newly arrived this term as well.
We are glad that they have joined us and look forward to their contributions to the life of the school. We wish them every success and happiness in their service of our young people.
You will have seen from the local press this summer that our former Year 11 and 13 students achieved exceptionally in their examinations. These include: 87% of our students achieving the new government demanding threshold in English and Maths, with almost 40% of the students achieving the numerical grade 7 or higher which equates to A/A*.
An outstanding 12% (four times the national average) of all Coombe students achieved the new grade 9, designed nationally to recognise the very highest performing students. This outstanding success is replicated across all our subjects.
Similarly, Coombe Sixth Form results soared as students delivered exceptional performances. Relishing the challenge of new and more rigorous examinations for 2017, Coombe Sixth Form students responded with a first-rate performance with 36% achieving A*/A, the highest ever, and almost two thirds of all entries graded A*-B. These are truly amazing results across the board. Results at A*/A were particularly high, exceeding the national figure by as much as 33%, in Art, Classical Civilisation, Design Technology, Drama, English Literature, French, Mathematics and Further Mathematics, Philosophy and Ethics, Physics, Psychology, Religious Studies and Physical Education Studies. These exceptional grades in a wide range of subjects stem from the broad and balanced curriculum taught in the earlier years at Coombe.
The two ‘new’ year groups, Year 7 and Year 12, have made a very good start and a very good impression. Well done to all students for a smooth and very positive start to the year. I enjoyed queueing up at the start of term to make a purchase from The Coombe Land Girls’ fruit and vegetable stall that the girls had harvested from our own on-site Coombe allotment. I am also pleased to see so many girls engaging with the additional extra-curricular provision and clubs on-site. Evidence tells us that girls who engage in such activities will be more successful.
All good wishes for the term and year ahead, with thanks as always for your encouragement and support. I would particularly like to thank the PFA and the Parents’ Council for their tireless support and along with the girls I am very excited about the development of the new quad area and nature garden supported through PFA funding.