Attainment at a high for St Margaret Ward Catholic Academy

Sixth form students from St Margaret Ward Catholic Academy, Tunstall were celebrating after collecting their A Level results this year.

Attainment in both A Levels and vocational studies is higher than in previous years and the staff believe that the caring and supportive environment is a key factor in the improved results.

Principal, Dominic McKenna, said: “I’m delighted that the students have done so well and that they’re able to go to their first choice universities. We have lots of students off to Russell Group universities too, which is a testament to their hard work and determination.

They’re now able to move on to the next stage in their lives and we wish them all the very best for their future.”

The sixth form at St Margaret Ward Catholic Academy has just 120 students, which means that the staff can offer higher levels of support and really get to know the students.

Trish Rhodes, Head of Sixth Form, said: “We’re a lovely sixth form where the staff really care, and I’m so pleased with the results.

I’m over the moon that the students are going off to university and have been able to go to their first choices. They all now have the opportunity to pursue good careers and have given themselves great life chances.”

Speaking about this year’s exams, Trish said: ”After GCSEs were cancelled and we had to use teacher assessments, this is the first time that these students have sat exams and we weren’t sure what to expect!

But all the students have worked really hard, and that’s reflected in these great results.”

Elizabeth McCarthy is one such student who is off to Sheffield University to study Japanese after always having an interest in the language.

She said: “I love the Japanese language and it will give me the opportunity to travel. I’ve even been learning the Japanese alphabet over the summer holidays in preparation for starting uni.”

Alisha Ashar was not expected to gain high grades when she joined the sixth form, but she’s worked hard and will be taking her place at Durham University to study Law later this year.

More notable university places include Szymon Sawicki, who will attend Cambridge University studying History, Vince Catipon and Ebenezer Kidane who are off to first choices, Lancaster University and Manchester Metropolitan University respectively, to study mechanical engineering, Arun Deo who’s heading to Keele Uni to study Mathematics, Sanjana Rosh who is going to Birmingham University to study medicine and Lamia Ahmed who is hoping to go to Warwick University to study Neuroscience.

Abdulla Aumir is looking to go through clearing and said: “I’m not sure where I’ll be able to go yet, but I’m hoping to do computer science or something similar.”

And some of the students were keeping their options open before deciding whether to go to university or pursue other options.

For more information about joining St Margaret Ward Catholic Academy sixth form, email