AN ANXIOUS two month wait for exam results came to an end after students in Thurrock received their A-Level results.
Nationally, more students than ever before have been accepted into university on results day, while the fate of others will be decided through the clearing process.
At Palmers College in Grays - the principle sixth form and further education college in Thurrock - it was hard to find students not going on to university after receiving the results they had worked so hard for.
The college’s pass rate this year was 97.4 per cent, with 63 per cent of students gaining A* to C grades. A select few are bound for Cambridge and Oxford. Many others grinned like the Cheshire cats as they pulled the result slips from their envelopes to see they have achieved their ambitions.
The Stanford and Corringham Sixth Form Centre - a partnership centre run by the area's three secondary schools St Clere's, Hassenbrook and Gable Hall - recorded a 100 per cent pass rate, with every student gaining at least one A* to E grade.
Gateway Academy Sixth Form's first set of A-Level results saw 91 per cent of pupils passing. The centre achieved a 100 per cent BTEC level three pass rate.
Palmers student Sam Webb, 18 from College Avenue, Grays, is off to Cambridge to study medicine after getting A*s in Biology, Chemistry and Maths. Christopher Mullender of Oakwood Road, Corringham did four A-Levels and is Oxford-bound to study Physics. The 18-year-old got A*s in Double Maths and Physics and an A in Computing.
Other students did well but have opted not to take the university route.
In a bid to keep her options open, Charlotte Mulligan did A-Levels in dance, biology and chemistry but decided she has had enough of education’s academic side after finding the exam period stressful. The 18-year-old who is hoping to dance on stages in the West End one day said: “I was originally going to do biology at university but I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to do dance.
“I made the decision while I was studying to go to the Dance Performing Arts college in Corringham. I enjoyed my time here but i’m glad it’s over. I don’t think I could do university, i’d rather be doing something more practical.”
Joseph Spall, an 18-year-old of North Road, South Ockendon did a BTEC in music performance and music technology. He has elected to go straight into work, starting at the bottom and working his way up in recording studios.
Notable performers at SCSC were Robert Keens, a former Hassebrook Academy pupil, who got two As and two A*S. Chloe Lee scored three As and one B.
Tony Collins, a student at Gateway, secured a place at the prestigious London Contemporary School of Dance.
Mark Vinall, Principal at Palmers College said: “This is the biggest day of our year when the fruits of everybody’s labours are looked at, measured, analysed and celebrated.
“There are some fantastic individual successes but the college as a whole has maintained its high standards as we have done year on year for innumerable years. It’s another great years for Palmers, for Grays and for our students. People have come to expect a consistently high performance from Palmers.
“Our pass rate is 97.4 per cent this year and when you perform at that level it’s great to see it come in year-on-year at such a high level.”
Ms Sue Weston, Director of the Stanford & Corringham 6th Form said: “Our students are very happy with their results, which are the product of successful partnerships between students, parents and the highly committed staff of the three schools which make up the sixth form consortium.”
Gateaway Academy Head of Sixth Form Megan Koprash said: "I feel that the Academy is a place where we offer a very personalised approach to Sixth Form Education. We offer many fantastic enrichment projects such as learning champions, where pupils can gain paid work experience within the school."