Award winning Junior Head

October 15th, 2021 | Posted by Rebecca Walker in News | Results - (0 Comments)

Congratulations to St Joseph’s Junior Head, Caroline Skerry, who has this week had her Primary Science Teaching Award endorsed by The Wellcome Trust. This well-deserved award comes following recognition of her innovative ways to engage pupils in Science by making it relevant and exciting. The award recognises Caroline’s work not only within school but beyond her school remit to reach as many other staff and pupils she can in Cornwall. Caroline works closely with a number of MATs in the south west to engage other science leaders and to encourage them to embrace their role, delivering workshops and training. The Primary Science Teaching Trust said ‘We know that great science teaching in schools depends on brilliant science leadership and Caroline’s contribution to this is outstanding’. Caroline is an exceptional member of the St Joseph’s community, and we are all extremely proud of her and congratulate her for this well-deserved award. Well-done, Caroline.

GCSE Results 2021

August 12th, 2021 | Posted by Rebecca Walker in Headteacher Blog | News | Results - (0 Comments)

Children getting their GCSE results in 2021 have faced prolonged challenges to the continuity of their education greater than any school cohort since the second world war. They have faced lockdown, online and remote learning and have coped with changes that their predecessors simply could not have imagined.

In the face of a global pandemic, their resilience and mental health have been tested as never before and to see such excellent GCSE results nationally based on teacher assessed grades is quite remarkable. At St Joseph’s, Launceston, pupils really showed how well they could face up to these challenges: every child achieved the benchmark of at least 5 GCSEs at Level 4 or above including Maths and English, while 45% of grades were awarded at Level 7 or above.

St Joseph’s is entirely non-selective and welcomes pupils of all ability levels and staff were delighted that pupils of all abilities performed so well, with 100% of grades at 4 or above.

Headteacher Mr Oliver Scott said “teachers, pupils and all involved in education across the country deserve huge credit for all they have achieved this year. The pressure on everyone involved in education has been huge, and the children who gained these grades not only faced the pressure of their GCSE results, but of knowing they were only ever one positive Covid test away from isolation and remote learning. They have gained their grades through lockdowns, lessons online, nasal swabs, one-way systems, bubbles, masks, hand sanitising, desk swabbing and endless risk assessing.

These children deserve so much credit for their achievements in a world that has been turned upside down through their crucial GCSE years. They have provided the firm evidence for their grades through assessments and rigorous internal moderation processes where teachers across the country have worked tirelessly to ensure they have met every requirement of the exam boards, and have done so with the best interests of the children at the forefront of their thinking.

Year 11 maintained excellent attendance at the full online timetable we offered during the January to March lockdown, attending 6 live lessons a day as well as participating in House activities and assemblies. Our brilliant Head Pupils even sent motivational poems and quotations to all Senior School pupils every day via our secure email system. To have them back, and to say a proper goodbye, at our summer Prize Giving was a very special moment.

Every year we take great pride in the young people who leave us for pastures new, but this year, more than perhaps ever before, that pride is overwhelming for all of us who have seen the journey Year 11 have taken. Every set of results matters, and for every child success takes its own shape. I would also like to say a big thank you to every parent for their support of the children through this time. This is so important in allowing children to succeed – and the parents we have here at school are key to all we do.

This year, every Year 11, in every school, should just be very proud of all they have done to get to results day. Well done Year 11 – you are amazing for all you have achieved.”

Congratulations to the class of 2021 and best wishes for the next step on your journey.

Pictured here are some of the Year 11 students collecting their results today.

In a GCSE year like no other, one thing has remained constant at St Joseph’s School in Launceston and that has been the hard work of pupils and staff in what have been very trying times. Everyone involved with the school was delighted to see this hard work rewarded with another year of excellent GCSE results, results that showed just how hard the children had worked.

Every child achieved the benchmark of at least 5 GCSEs at Level 4 or above including Maths and English, while 44% of grades were awarded at Level 7 or above compared to a national average of 25.9%. St Joseph’s is entirely non-selective and welcomes pupils of all ability levels and staff were delighted that pupils of all abilities performed so well, with 99% of grades at 4 or above where nationally this was 76%.

As at every school across the country, the work of ensuring evidence for every teacher assessed level has been exhaustive and based on the in depth knowledge of the children that the staff are able to develop. With 6 of the Year 11 leavers having been at St Joseph’s since Nursery, there were many remarkable individual tales across this talented cohort.

One of these pupils, Deputy Head Girl Isobel Thorns, said “What a crazy year it has been, I have been at St Joseph’s for over 13 years and I never thought my school journey would end like this. Today I have collected my GCSE results and I am so happy to see the smiles on everyone’s faces as my friends and classmates receive their fantastic results. It’s been a stressful year, however knowing all the hard work and effort we put in was worth it. I am ready for my next chapter of education and cannot wait to see what the future holds for our year group. Well done to Year 11 2020.”

Headteacher Mr Oliver Scott said “No school or child should be reduced to a data set or an algorithm: every school is made up of a collection of individual stories that are the lives, challenges and hard work of the children for whom they care. I have followed the stories of so many of these children over the 9 years I have been at St Joseph’s, and cannot tell you how proud I am of them all.

Many have overcome so much to be where they are today, and they, like Year 11s across the country, have missed out on so much with the cancellation of exams and all of the rites-of-passage moments that occur over the summer term. While they may not have had their prom, their leavers’ assembly, their last day of exams and much else besides, they have now all received GCSE results they should take real pride in.

It is testament to the hard work of pupils and staff across many years that these young people have achieved all they have. I would like to thank everyone involved – parents, pupils, all staff and our governing body who all work so hard to create a culture of care and support around the children in order that they have the opportunity to succeed. While one child may have a near clean sweep of grade 9s, for another a 4 represents, for them, an equal level of success. St Jo’s has again shown it is a school for all abilities. Well done to our class of 2020 – and to every child in every school who has endured such a difficult GCSE year.”

Congratulations to the class of 2020 and best wishes for the next step on your journey.

A Firm Foundation with St Joseph’s GCSE results.
Year 11 Students at St Joseph’s School in Launceston were celebrating another excellent set of GCSE results in 2019.
The results highlighted the remarkable academic achievements of the pupils at this leading non-selective Cornish independent school where small class sizes and excellent teaching saw 91% of grades at levels 4-9 and 89% of pupils gaining at least 5 grades at Level 4-9 including Maths and English.
This shows the strength of the school and the hard work of pupils who achieved such good grades. While staff were delighted to see fully 18% of grades at the new upper levels of 8 and 9 – an outstanding achievement by any measure – it was the success of every pupil that mattered to every teacher.
Headteacher Mr Oliver Scott said “St Joseph’s is a school where children of all abilities can flourish, and I am delighted to see so many success stories here today. I am very pleased indeed that under the tough new GCSE system we have seen year-on year improvement and we now have 37% of all results at grades 7-9, which is a great reflection on the staff and students here at our school.”
“It cannot be stated enough that leaving Year 11 is about more than GCSE grades – however good they may be – and it is the confidence the children gain through their time here, and the friendships they form that they take also with them into the wider world. I am immeasurably proud of all of our Year 11 pupils for everything they have done here at school, and we shall will miss every one of them a great deal.”
Whether joining in Reception like Nico Gruzdev or into Year 10 as was the case for Alec Macdonald, the results demonstrate the benefits St Joseph’s can provide for any pupil. This cohort of Year 11s had a reputation for being a strong team, and of working together to get the best out of one another.
Looking at the GCSEs achieved by the class of 2019, this certainly showed that the Firm Foundation for Life that the school aims to provide for every pupil has been built for each of those leaving St Joseph’s this summer.
Congratulations to our GCSE class of 2019.




Well done to all those St Joseph’s pupils who competed at the ISA National Championships this weekend – a wonderful example of pupils competing at an extremely high level for their school. Having won through the ISA South West qualifiers, the team took to the road to compete in London – and came home with two gold medals, courtesy of Olivia Shute in Year 7.

Olivia managed to achieve the exceptional double of the Year 7 50 metre Backstroke title, along with the 50 metre Freestyle title. That she was able to achieve so highly was quite remarkable given the level of the competition, and a credit to the time and dedication she puts into her training and swimming out of school. She was not the only Shute to have medal success, however, as her younger sister Hollie was a key member of the squad that won Bronze for the South West in the 4x50m Freestyle category – a wonderful tribute to the sisters’ talent in the swimming pool.

As always, it is never just about those who step onto the podium, but about every member of the team, and qualification for the National Championships is a great achievement in itself, and one we will mark in the summer’s prize giving events. Very well done to Harrison Shaw, Ella Henry-Brock, Thomas Greet, Theo Marshall, Louisa Smith, Sapphire Bhatti, Marlo Downs and Jack Joshua, all of whom represented both St Joseph’s and the South West in the water.

Headteacher Mr Scott said “It is wonderful to see sporting success at such a level. Following our recent national success in the ISA Art Competition, it shows just what a standard the children here can reach. All of our swimmers have all done exceptionally well to qualify, and for Olivia and Hollie to gain the medals they have is just brilliant. Well done – very few children can say they are double ISA National title winners and it is a great achievement for Olivia to join such a select band. Very well done to all – everyone at St Joseph’s is very proud of them.”