GCSE results: Barkingside’s Ilford County bags ‘best grades ever’

The parents waiting in their cars looked far more anxious than the boys collecting envelopes in the hall at Ilford County High School, Fremantle Road, Barkingside.

Inside, headteacher Michael Capon was celebrating the grammar school’s “best results ever”, with 80 per cent of all GCSE grades being A* or A.

Mr Capon said: “Historically we always do better than we expect, and this year was no different.

“Advantages of schools like ours are the dedication of pupils, parents and a highly committed group of teachers who know their stuff.”

“It’s all of that that produces the success,” he added.

Of those high achievers, perhaps the happiest was Vinay Sonagara, 16, of The Drive, Ilford.

The bright spark picked up no fewer than 11-and-a-half A* grades, plus an A in additional maths, which does not offer the A* award.

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“I am elated, ecstatic, over-the-moon,” beamed Vinay. “I was really shaking when I held the envelope but when I opened them I was so pleased.

“All my hard work has come to fruition.”

He immediately telephoned his parents who said they were “very happy”.

Equally ecstatic was Gethin Evans, of South Woodford, with nine A*s.

After picking up his impressive results he was off to Reading music festival to celebrate with friends.

His classmates Oliver Wallen (6 A*s) Abhishek Ambekar (11 A*s) and one of the borough’s highest flyers Mandeep Singh (12A*s) were all in a jubilant mood.

Mandeep’s father Baljit told the Recorder: “Mandeep has always been confident in his studies. I thought he would do well but I can’t believe he has got 12 A*s.

“He balanced his time well, he knows when to study but also when to relax and play computer games.”

Last week the school enjoyed a bumper set of A-level results, with 81 per cent of all grades being A* to B.

All six applicants to Oxford and Cambridge bagged their place at the historic institutions.