Proving our added value

In a two-year-period, we boost each student’s GCSE results by, on average, more than half a grade.

Our added value

In 2017, statistics provided by the Centre for Evaluation and Monitoring (CEM) showed that on average, St Mary's School, Cambridge boosts GCSE results by more than half a grade.

How is it calculated?

Year 10 students undertake a computer-based YELLIS assessment, provided by CEM, an independent monitoring body based at Durham University. This provides us with a detailed picture of each student's academic profile and potential across different subjects.

CEM also predicts GCSE grades for each student is likely to achieve, by comparing with past students of similar academic profiles. When students collect their GCSE results at the end of Year 11, we compare the actual results with the grades predicted by CEM. This allows us to evaluate how much added-value our teaching has delivered over the two-year period.

Key stats*:

  • On average our students achieve 0.6 of a grade higher than predicted by CEM
  • 135 papers predicted to be a B grade gained either an A grade (81 papers) or an A* grade (54 papers)
  • Grades in Music, German, Drama and Desigh and Technology were a whole grade higher than predicted
  • Grades in Biology, Chemistry and Physics were all more than half a grade higher than predicted
  • Grades in English Language, English Literature and Humanities subjects were all more than half a grade higher than predicted

“Although we are a selective school we take enormous pride in offering places to students of a wider ability range than other local independent schools. We have the freedom and resources to invest in each and every student - including a rigorous academic environment, tailored support and our in-depth pastoral care programme. This approach adds value, making a positive difference to our students' academic accomplishments." Charlotte Avery, Headmistress

Of course a whole host of factors influence academic attainment. From changing grade boundaries, to students' effort levels, personal health, home lives and availability of support. CEM takes these wider factors into account and in 2016, CEM indicated that a value-added score of more than 0.2 could be attributed directly to a schools' teaching and resources. In this context our average 0.6 score, show that our approach added substantial value to GCSE outcomes.

"It is important to note that this accomplishment relates to every part of our school community, for both day students and boarders, our brightest students and those benefitting from learning support or for whom English may not be their primary language. Each 'group' achieved higher grades, on average. Although academic achievement is only part of what we offer at St Mary's School, Cambridge, I am thrilled to shout about our success in this way." Charlotte Avery, Headmistress

Dated: 27 January 2017, CEM statistics from 2016/7