I want to congratulate all the pupils who received their GCSE results today but also to say:
This is not a sign of your worth as a person, this is a snapshot. It's mostly a test of your memory and ability to retain information that is often largely irrelevant to you. It takes no account of your mental, physical and emotional state at the time of taking the exam, nor the ability of your teacher. It doesn't test your compassion, your strength of character or your drive. It makes no allowances if your parents can't afford to feed you properly, if you're in a crowded house with no quiet space to revise, or your class is of ten pupils, or thirty. Only you know the challenges that you face, and they will never be the same as the person sitting next to you smiling about their grades, or the person in front of you crying about theirs.
To the young people who received their results today, well done, you're amazing and you deserve to be proud of what you've achieved, whether it's academic, emotional or physical. You've made it through high school, one of the most challenging times in your life. Thank you also to all the wonderful teachers who inspire their pupils in more than just academic ways.