Exam results, performance tables and destinations info

The Downs School is a high performing school, with a consistently strong record of academic success at both GCSE and A Level. We are very proud of the high percentage pass rates achieved by our students, due to the excellence and diligence of our teaching staff, the hard work of our students and the partnership between staff and parents.

In 2021 our GCSE students achieved a remarkable set of exam results, befitting this extraordinary year group. 89% of our students achieved grades A*-C, with 79% of students achieving A*- strong pass and 40% of students achieving grades A*-A.

Chris Prosser, Headteacher said: ‘This has been an incredibly difficult time for our Year 11 students, but I am so proud to say that they have shown true maturity and responsibility at a time of great upheaval and uncertainty. The diligence and effort that students put into their studies was clear to see as staff began the process of marking key assessments and awarding final grades. They can rest assured that the grades they have received from The Downs School were fairly awarded and are a true reflection of the hard work and commitment that they showed throughout their time with us. I wish every single one of our students all the very best for the future, and I hope to see many of them return to us as members of our Sixth Form in September.’

Leeona Bermingham, Assistant Headteacher - Ethos and Achievement at KS4 said: ‘This year’s Year 11 are such a brilliant group of students. Despite all the challenges of the last 18 months, they have kept their focus and resolve, and worked diligently to achieve their very best in the face of immense disruption. I want to thank and congratulate each and every student on their efforts and wish them the very best for the future.’

In 2021 our A Level students achieved an outstanding set of results, with 91% of students achieving A*-C grades, 72% % A*-B grades and 50% A*-A grades.

Chris Prosser, Headteacher, said ‘Even before the pandemic began, we knew that Year Thirteen were an incredibly motivated and determined group of students. Having gone through two lockdowns, they have experienced more challenges than any Year Group before them. They faced these challenges head on and, with the support of their teachers and the Sixth Form pastoral staff, really thrived. I have no doubt that these experiences will help them to achieve just as much success when they begin their university courses, apprenticeships and jobs. We could not be more proud of this cohort of students: they have truly earned their excellent results.’

Pete Hogan, Head of Sixth Form, said ‘We have already read stories of grade inflation in the national press, but the simple truth is that our students have worked incredibly hard to achieve such an outstanding set of results. Nobody has given them these grades. Our students have taken part in a really rigorous programme of assessment that was at least as challenging as the normal exams, so they should all feel really proud of what they have achieved during their time at The Downs School.’

The government provides a website for the comparison of each school’s results against its local authority and the national averages. Please click on the link below to view this information. 

Key Stage 4 (GCSE and L2 BTEC)            
Performance Measure 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Progress 8 Score 0.30 0.16 0.35 0.07 N/A N/A
Attainment 8 Score 57.2 53 54.5 53 56.98 60.16
% students attaining 4+ in English and Maths 74% 79% 85% 80% 83% 89%
% students attaining 5+ in English and Maths N/A 58% 59% 56% 64% 75%
EBacc APS N/A 4.75 4.74 4.63 4.95 5.22
% students entered for EBacc N/A 42% 41% 36% 35% 37%


Key Stage 5 (A Level and L3 BTEC)            
Performance Measure 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Number of students 169 139 142 120 159 155
ALPS score (teaching quality score) At around 50th percentile In top 25% of schools In top 25% of schools In top 40% of schools In top 5% of schools In top 5% of schools
Average Point Score per student 32.4 (C+) 33.8 (C+) 37.4 (B-) 36.57 (B-) 40.35 (B) 43.01 (B+)
A* grades 5.2% 6.3% 8.8% 9.4% 12.3% 19.6%
A*-A grades 26.2% 30.8% 32.6% 27.2% 38.8% 49.6%
A*-C grades 79% 80.6% 82.4% 74.1% 88.7% 90.5%
Pass rate 98.1% 97.3% 97.7% 99.1% 100% 100%


Leavers Destinations Information 2021 - Year 11

Number of students Joined The Downs School Sixth Form Joined another Sixth Form Continued education abroad Joined FE College Started apprenticeships Employment NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training)
179 112 23 2 34 5 2 1


Leavers Destinations Information 2021 - Year 13

Number of students Went to university*  ** FE College Gap Year Employment NEET  Apprenticeships
155 105 5 20 20 1 4


*56% of students accepted a place at a Russell Group/1994 Group University.

** 5 students accepted an Oxbridge place, with 6 studying Medicine Veterinary Medicine or Dentistry.

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