Government praise for RGS achievements

Celebrating: Jonathan Webb, pictured with students in the school library, is thrilled the hard work of staff and pupils has been recognised

STAFF and students at Ripon Grammar School are celebrating their exceptional academic achievements being officially recognised by the government.

Schools minister Nick Gibb has written to congratulate teachers and pupils for being in the top two per cent of state-funded mainstream schools for progress to GCSEs.

He also praises the school’s high level of EBacc (English Baccalaureate) subjects, which include English language and literature, maths, sciences, geography, history and a modern language.

In a letter to headmaster Jonathan Webb, Mr Gibb says: "Thank you for your work in continuing the drive towards higher academic standards, and congratulations to you and your staff for your hard work and professionalism.”

Last year, students at RGS - which is one of only five grammar schools in the country to offer boarding and Yorkshire’s only state boarding school - achieved 95 per cent of GCSEs at grades A*-B/9-5.

Mr Gibb explains that RGS students’ academic progress from leaving primary school to the end of fifth form, known as Progress 8 scores, is well above the national average.

“Your school’s Progress 8 score of 0.98 shows that you are in the top two per cent of state-funded mainstream schools in terms of the progress your pupils make,” he says.

He also pointed out that RGS was in the top nine per cent of state schools for EBacc entry: “We want to ensure that every child, regardless of their background, has the chance to study the EBacc at GCSE, which is why I was delighted to see your results.

“EBacc subjects provide a sound basis for careers beyond the age of 16 and can also enrich pupils’ studies, giving them a broad general knowledge,” he said.

Headmaster Jonathan Webb said he was thrilled to receive the letter from Mr Gibb: “Progress results are vitally important as they measure how much we, as a school, have added to the quality of our students’ education.

“This letter acknowledges all the hard work of students and staff, as well as all the valuable support we receive from parents, governors, our alumni and those in the wider community.”

Making great progress: some of last year's high-achieving GCSE students pictured outside Ripon Grammar School