GCSE success for Activate Learning’s City of Oxford College students

More than 94% of students taking full-time GCSE programmes or standalone maths and English GCSEs at City of Oxford College’s City Centre Campus and Technology Campus in Blackbird Leys, achieved a pass in this year’s exams.

Many of the college’s GCSE students are learners who resit maths, English or both, to continue in education or progress their career.

This includes mature students who need these GCSEs to progress in the workplace, learners who may have missed the chance to go to university and want to study at degree level, alongside part-time students who have studied GCSEs at evening classes.

Cheri Ashby, Deputy Chief Executive of Activate Learning, said: “GCSE results day is such a special time for us at Activate Learning, as often we see our students overcoming the barriers they have encountered in their studies previously, to improve their grades and succeed where perhaps they thought they would not.

“Once again, this year I am delighted to see so many students improving on what they have previously achieved, and to do so in the first public exams for two years – and for many of them their first since they were in Year 6 – is a real achievement.

Celebrating students of all ages

“I’d also like to take a moment to celebrate our older students who may have returned to education to get their maths and English GCSEs to advance their careers. I’ve heard some amazing stories about some of our mature students and I really want to shine a spotlight on their achievements, especially given the demands many of them faced in terms of juggling family commitments, busy home schedules and coming into college.

“In particular, our mature students studying English and maths GCSEs fully online have experienced tremendous success today. This is a tribute to the way our teachers have embedded our Learning Philosophy by supporting our students to develop and build their confidence, keeping them motivated through helping them understand the relevance of their learning to their career pathway and having lots of opportunities to practise their skills and improve through ongoing feedback.

“I would like to also express my thanks and appreciation to all our staff who have worked tirelessly over the past year to ensure our students achieve their qualifications.

“For those students who are due to join us next year, I hope everyone has done as well as they had hoped. Please remember that if you have not, we are always here to help you work out what you can do next and talk through your career options with you.”

Ensuring progression with GCSE qualifications

Bonnie Lynn

Bonnie Lynn a full-time GCSE Science pathway student and top performer at City of Oxford College, is celebrating an outstanding set of results including Grades 9-9 in Combined Science, Grade 7 in Maths, Grade 7 in English Language and Grade 7 in Statistics.

Bonnie said: “After achieving A*AA in my A Levels, City of Oxford College kindly allowed me to stay an extra year to resit my GCSEs.

“The past three years at college enabled me to become highly independent and proactive in regard to education and academic extracurriculars.

“Combining both my grades and experience, I now have a strong applicant profile for University, whereby I intend to be studying Medicine next year.”

Robbie Stonehouse achieved a Grade 5 in his English GCSE programme alongside passing his Media Level 2 Diploma this year.

Robbie said: “I was only aiming for a Grade 4 and my tutors really helped me to achieve.

“They noticed my hard work and helped me to improve. I am blown away by the support I received. They could not have done more and even put on extra sessions to support my studies.”

Supporting students to thrive

Sally Stonehouse, Robbie’s mum, added: “I want to take this opportunity to say a massive thank you to all the staff at City of Oxford College for all the extra support they give.”

Activate Learning in Oxford provides GCSE pathways and part-time adult GCSE programmes, a wide range of A Levels including further mathematics, drama and theatre studies, physics and media studies, as well as degree subjects ranging from business and enterprise, furniture design and make and sports coaching. Additionally, City of Oxford College’s extensive network of business partners means they provide outstanding apprenticeship opportunities via Activate Apprenticeships.

This year, City of Oxford College are providing information, advice and guidance via Clearing sessions at the college from GCSE Results Day, and throughout the end of August and September. Tutors and career advisers will be on hand to help anyone who is unsure as to what to do next after GCSEs, and can also provide advice on funding and other student support services.

Clearing sessions can be booked on the City of Oxford College website.