The cohort applying for university entrance in 2022 is our first cohort. Their estimated grades are based on past papers taken in June of Year 12 and September of Year 13. Students took full A-Level papers for Mathematics GCE and AS-Level papers for Further Mathematics GCE, Physics GCE and Computer Science GCE. We have applied the relevant marking criteria and grade boundaries and then taken into account how accurately these performance might predict future achievement. Some of our students are improving rapidly from lower GCSE results, and are expected to achieve high grades in A-Level.
All students in our school study Mathematics GCE, Further Mathematics GCE, Computer Science GCE and Physics GCE in Year 12. Students are allowed to drop one of these subjects at the end of Year 12 but most have chosen to continue with 4 A-Levels because they are enjoying the courses and succeeding with them all.
Our school is a new Specialist Mathematics School, the third such school to open in England and the first in the North of England. Our approach is similar to that of Kings College Maths School and Exeter Maths School, and we have similar objectives in widening participation in the mathematical sciences and providing an enriched and rigorous foundation for university study for those with the highest potential.
Our students come from across the Liverpool City Region. Many of them come from postcodes that have low progression to university rates and have previously attended schools with low Progress 8 scores and low Ofsted ratings. We work with schools in challenging circumstances and to encourage aspiration through our outreach programme with the aim of increasing the chances of student success in the mathematical sciences at A-Level and beyond.
Entry to our Sixth Form requires grade 8 or above in Maths GCSE and Physics/ Combined Science GCSE and five more grade 5 GCSEs, or equivalent. We apply flexibility to this where students have met with disadvantage in their prior education. Some students come to use with a relatively poor grounding in mathematics and science but demonstrate their suitability in our interview process. These students catch up rapidly as a result of our highly integrated curriculum which goes beyond A-Levels and explicitly teaches study and research skills as well as additional mathematical and scientific knowledge and skills.
Students who join us from low performing schools normally make rapid progress compared to their peers and are excellent candidates for demanding degree courses despite lower GCSE grades. We would encourage universities to take note where we indicate that a student is currently on a steep trajectory from GCSE to A-Level.
We currently have 26 students in Year 13 and 36 students in Year 12.