Pupils were celebrating at Ballyclare High after receiving their GCSE results on Thursday morning (August 20).
Of the 186 pupils who sat GCSE exams at the Rashee Road school, 150 will be continuing their studies at the school as they embark on their A Levels in September.
Dr Michelle Rainey, who is the incoming principal, is very pleased with the results attained by the pupils.
“In the last couple of years we have had some exceptional results. This year isn’t just as exceptional as the last couple of years, but it is very much in line with what we had been experiencing in the preceding years,” she said.
Dr Rainey is very happy with the performance of the boys this year, and a closing of the gender gap at this level.
“We know that boys maybe don’t just exceed as highly as girls at this stage in their academic careers. This year around two-thirds of our Year 12 were boys. We have started a lot of ‘boy friendly’ initiatives over the last few years, and it is very pleasing that we have seen a closing of the gender gap,” Dr Rainey explained.
The school prides itself in the careers service that it provides, and staff were on hand to offer help and advice this morning.
“We have careers staff on the ground, and each pupil will be given an interview by a careers member of staff or pastoral member of staff, or indeed both. We will work hard with every pupil and their parents to make sure we align for them their strengths towards a course and viable options for the future,” Dr Rainey continued.
The incoming principal paid tribute to the effort put in by all the pupils and staff at the school, and remarked on how pleased she was to see students who may have struggled in junior school gaining some very positive GCSE results.
“Some pupils struggled through junior school for various reasons, but they made the decision to work with our dedicated staff to turn things around. I’m delighted to have seen their results this morning. Those sorts of things are why we do this job, because those are the sorts of things which matter,” she said.
“It is important to see the boys and girls who excel, but it is also important to nurture those who may struggle so as they get what they need in life as well.”