Jubilant students celebrated some brilliant GCSE exam results at English Martyrs School in Hartlepool today.
Anxiety was replaced with joy and relief for the vast majority of teenagers who opened their envelopes this morning.
Standards at English Martyrs have improved for a second running with 73% of grades at C, or new equivalent grade 4 in English and maths subjects compared with 65% last year.
Over two thirds of students - 64% - secured at least a grade 4 in both English and maths. Eight students achieved the new highest grade 9, which are reserved for the top 2-3% of students nationally.
Headteacher Stephen Hammond said: "I am very proud of the many success stories that we can see here at the school.
"There has been a great deal of national debate about making GCSEs ever harder, and to see our students with their wide range of abilities continuing to achieve highly is a real credit to them.
“As ever, we will be looking to improve further next year, but this is a chance to say well done to all those who now set of to the next stage of their lives with a firm foundation in place.”
Among the fantastic individual performances was Czarnelle Martin who achieved two grade 9s, a grade 8, five A* and two As.
Paul Lee, 16, from West Park, in Hartlepool, gained a grade 9 in maths, six A*, one grade A and two grade 6s.
He said: "I feel really happy about them. It is a lot better than what I was expecting. I did work hard though and revised a lot for maths."
Kate Adamson, 16, from Bishop Cuthbert, achieved seven A*s, a grade 8 in maths, two grade 7s and an A.
She said: "I'm very pleased. I was sick with nerves before getting them.
"I found the maths exam very difficult. That's the one I wasn't really expecting."
Diego Bautista attained a grade 9, 4 A*’s, and 2 Distinctions.