Two of our top-performing Year 13 students – Akeel Shah (left) and Ben Rawsthorne (right).

We were proud of our Year 13 students on Thursday as they achieved fantastic results, following two years of Covid disruption. While this was the year group that was unable to sit GCSEs in 2020, these students have continued our strong tradition of outstanding achievement across a range of academic and vocational courses. They have accessed the wide variety of support offered, and at times overcome personal adversity to maximise their potential, in the personalised learning environment offered by the school.

At A level, we were particularly proud of Ben Rawsthorne and Akeel Shah, who have earned two A*s and one A apiece. For Ben, this has landed him a place at the University of Sheffield. He is well-equipped for a history and politics degree, having led the Student Council for a year as Head Student. Akeel will continue his studies at the prestigious University of Warwick; his art, maths and physics A levels have prepared him for a future career in engineering. In fact, engineering is a popular career path for this year’s cohort. Three maths graduates – Tinashe Chituku, Shafayat Mustafa and Jason Zingapan – earned identical grades and will all head to the same university for engineering degrees. Their one A* and two As each have landed them places at the University of Southampton.

This year has seen more students than ever before mixing their pathways, combining A level courses with vocational qualifications. One example was Daniel Luwawa, who joined the Sixth Form from our Year 11 with dreams of breaking into the music industry as a producer or music engineer. Isleworth & Syon offered him the RSL qualification for Music Practitioners, which focused more on industry and practical skills than the A level course. The Distinction* he earned in this course – along with his A* and A in Advanced level courses – has set him up brilliantly for a music technology degree at Kingston University. Maisie Edwin joined him with a Distinction*, which combined with an A* in A level in film and a B in history was a fantastic string of results. She is planning a gap year before resuming her musical studies in September 2023.

Once again, the school’s vocational offer was extremely strong. Three students earned all Distinction*s – the highest possible grades! Both Curran Bains and Hayden Wilson took the CTEC qualification in sport and earned a Triple Distinction* each. They will both advance their studies of how sport can be applied in the real world, with physiotherapy and sports & exercise psychology degrees respectively. Florence Williams, who joined from The Green School for Girls at the start of Year 12, earned a Double Distinction* and Distinction in CTEC sport, and will read criminology and sociology at Loughborough. This year’s group showed that the vocational courses can help students specialise in their subject areas. Darshpreet Brar is an excellent example. He took CTECs in business (Distinction* and Distinction*) and applied science (Distinction*) – in September he will read business management at Queen Mary. Arham Jan focused more on IT, earning a Double Distinction* in the CTEC course along with an extra Distinction in applied science. He is going to Brunel University to read computer science. The success of these courses reflects the depth of staff expertise and support in this area.

Headteacher Euan Ferguson commented, “Our young people have coped admirably over the past two years and demonstrated remarkable resilience and a great work ethic. They fully deserve to head off to some of the best universities in the country. We are also delighted that many will enter the world of work via some outstanding apprenticeship routes.

“These young people are inspiring and talented, and we are proud to have helped them on their journey to adulthood. They join some already illustrious alumni, and we look forward to hearing of their future achievements.

“As I retire this summer, it makes me immensely proud to finish my time at Isleworth & Syon School on such a high note.

“I wish all the students, whatever they have planned, all the very best for the future.”

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