Newly appointed Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has wished good luck to the thousands of young people who are set to receive their A level results this morning (15 August).
Many students up and down the country will also have their university offers confirmed, in a year where a record rate of 18-year-olds in England have applied to go onto higher education.
Provisional data published in May showed a total of 745,585 A level entries in England this academic year. That included rises in the number of entries to science courses, as well as rises in computing and history.
As well as wishing students good luck, the Education Secretary thanked teachers and schools for their hard work and highlighted the better quality choices available for further study.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said:
Everyone receiving results today should feel proud of their achievements – as should the thousands of teachers that supported them in our brilliant schools and colleges. Today marks the culmination of years of hard work which it’s right to recognise at this time of year.
Of course, the minds of thousands of young people getting their results will soon turn to the next chapter in their lives, whether that’s a place at one of our world class universities, earning on an apprenticeship or entering the world of work – and I hope every one of them is excited about the opportunities that lie ahead for them and I wish them the very best of luck for their results today.
This year also sees the continuation of the Government’s reforms to A levels in England, with almost all A level exams sat this summer being reformed qualifications. The new A levels have been updated to provide the best possible preparation for further study and the world of work, with all exams sat at the end of the course. This removes continual testing and enables students to gain a deeper understanding of the subject before they are assessed. The new A levels are designed to have the same level of challenge as the previous qualifications.
Thousands of the pupils getting their results today will go on to do an apprenticeship, offering students high-quality training and a wide range of career options. Apprenticeships now offer more off-the-job training than in previous years and are supported by some of the country’s leading employers, including Lloyds Banking Group, Royal Mail and Berkeley Group.
Many students will also go on to one of the UK’s world leading universities, and the latest cycle of applications show a record rate of disadvantaged 18-year-olds applying to go into higher education. This group were 52% more likely to go to university in 2018 than they were in 2009. This follows the Government’s efforts to improve access and successful participation for those from disadvantaged backgrounds and underrepresented groups, ensuring higher education is open to everyone with the talent and potential to benefit from it.