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School's achieve first class degrees - despite having no A-levels

By The Citizen  |  Posted: October 02, 2012

HOMECOMING: Graduates James Whiting, left, Emily Lowsley-Williams, second left, and Saran May, second right, with fellow former Acorn School pupils Larli Geary and Nile Pilcher.

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FORMER pupils of a unique Stroud school have graduated with first class degrees – even though they had never before taken an exam.

The seven graduates were prepared for university at The Acorn School in Nailsworth without sitting any GCSE or A-levels.

Instead of results, they were accepted at their various colleges by submission of professionally-bound portfolios and through interviews and all seven collected first class honours degrees.

Sarah May, from Stroud, earned her degree in forensic science, while Dursley brothers Finn and Liam Richardson gained theirs in environmental sustainability and medicine respectively.

Other successes were Emily Lowsley-Williams, of Chavenage, in fashion design; Dhyana Kim, of Dursley, in English; Clara Hudson, of Brimscombe, in occupational therapy and James Whiting, from Nailsworth, in sports science and medicine.

"All achieved their university places direct from The Acorn School, without any formal state certification, using the unique Acorn modular system," headteacher Graeme Whiting said.

"GCSE and A-levels are not offered at this school but, instead, our own unique, rigorous and regular assessment system is undertaken."

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