GCSE students have produced results higher than the national average, despite seeing a drop in benchmark grades.

Seaford Head School has bagged its best ever GCSE results with 71% of students achieving five A* to C including English and maths – up from 62% last year.

Chair of governors Sally Laidlaw said: “The staff and governors are absolutely delighted with these results and would like to congratulate all Seaford Head students on their achievements this year. “In the year that Seaford Head School is launching its Sixth Form what a great baseline to start from and we expect fantastic results in two year’s time.”

It was good news at Burgess Hill School for Girls with nearly 70% of grades coming back as A* or A and 89% of all exams taken were graded A* to B.

Zarina Budd who lives in Blackboys, Leane Chan from Hong Kong, Alicia Critchley and Tilly Loughton from Burgess Hill, Natasha Hoile who lives in Scaynes Hill, Nikita Khandwala from East Grinstead, Millie McQuillin who lives in Lindfield, Camilla Ryan from Cuckfield and Imogen Watson who lives in Twineham all bagged nine or more A* grades.

Headteacher Ann Aughwane said: “It is particularly pleasing to see the strength of the girls’ success in English, mathematics, science and languages which provide them with the best possible platform on which to build their futures, whatever their passion or skill.

“Individually they are delightful, and collectively they have been brilliant.

“I congratulate them and their teachers on a job well done.”

Pupils at Bede’s in Upper Dicker were overjoyed to discover that they had achieved the School’s best ever GCSE results this morning.

Bede’s has now achieved best-ever GCSE grades for five years in a row with more than 80% of pupils achieving at least one A or A* grade and almost one in ten pupils achieving straight A or A* grades.

Individual triumphs included Jack Rickard, Emilie Stone, Chris Bowe, Georgina Callaghan, Will Churcher, Jonathan Connell, Chloe Durrant, Beth Giddings, Alice Potter and Jasmine Sayed, all of whom achieved straight A and A* grades.

Bede’s headteacher Dr Richard Maloney said: “By enabling young people to pursue passions personal to them, while working with teachers operating creatively and at the very highest level, Bede’s and its pupils have once again shown that our philosophy of holistic, personalised education consistently delivers success.”

It was all smiles at Worthing High too, where they celebrated 58% of its students achieving the benchmark of five A* to C grades including English and Maths. Carolyn Dickinson, headteacher, said: “We have some excellent results achieved through the hard work of both students and staff.

“Particular congratulations go to the following students for their amazing results.

“Well done to all of these students and those who performed as well as they had hoped.”

Tom Reynard, who was the top performing student at Worthing High with eight A*s two As and Bs, said: “I am now looking forward to studying maths, further maths, physics, chemistry and pre-u Oxbridge at Worthing College.”

Hurstpierpoint College pupils look set to maintain last year’s high standards of achievement, and as they await the usual round of re-marks the percentage of A* grades rose again to 30% of all grades and 31 pupils achieved at least ten A* or A grades.

Headteacher Tim Manly said: “This year’s fifth form pupils have been a delightful group who have been justly rewarded for all their efforts, both academic and otherwise.

“We have come a long way over the years and I want to pay tribute to both the girls and the boys for what they have achieved and how they have achieved it.

“We are not an aggressively selective or de-selective school and I am delighted with these results - the pupils and their parents should feel rightly proud.

“I look forward to seeing them and our new intake of just under 60 students when they start their sixth form life at Hurst next week.”

Another school celebrating its best ever results was Seahaven Academy where 56% of students achieved five or more A* to C grades including English and maths – a jump of five percentage points on last summer’s results, and a leap of 18 points from 2012.

Headteacher Rob Corbett, who will be taking up post at Ifield Community College in September, said: “These results are a testament to the hard work and dedication of students and staff.

“It is a great feeling for everyone at the school to see young people who have been with us since Year 7 achieve the grades they need to move on successfully to the next stage of their education.

“I am delighted to be leaving Seahaven Academy with a strong set of results and look forward to following its future achievements.”

Just two per cent behind are Shoreham Academy, who celebrated 54% of its students achieving the benchmark grades.

Luke Mepham managed 12 A*s and the academy’s headteacher Heidi Brown, who leaves the school now to take up a headship at Bexhill High Academy, said: “I am very pleased with these results.

“In particular our English results are outstanding with 82% of our students gaining a C grade or above and 20% gaining A or A*.

“We deemed this our bounce back year following disappointing results in 2013 and we have certainly done that.”

At Christ’s Hospital, 88.4% achieved A*, A or B grades with 65.5% gaining A* or A grades.

Twenty-nine pupils gained at least 10 A* or A grades and John Franklin, headteacher, said: “This fine set of results, along with our excellent A Level and IB results achieved this summer, underlines the consistent pattern of high academic achievement at Christ’s Hospital.

“I am extremely proud of our pupils and their teachers and am confident this cohort will gain outstanding results in two years’ time.”

More than a quarter of the GCSEs taken at Lancing College were awarded the A* and 54% came back as A* or A.

Almost a fifth of students achieved a clean sweep of A* or A grades and headteacher Dominic Oliver said: “Congratulations to our GCSE candidates on their hard work and splendid results in a wide range of subjects.

“These studies, complemented by the many opportunities beyond the curriculum that Lancing offers, represent an excellent foundation for their A-level years. “As ever we will have a hugely positive ‘added value’ score this year - Lancing brings out the very best in the young people in our care.”

Headteacher Nicky Bassett celebrated a year of success, and said: “ It has certainly been a year of change on the educational landscape, so we are proud of the resilience our students have shown.

“Their success wouldn’t be possible without the support of their parents or dedication of our talented staff.

“We hope they enjoy celebrating and wish them the very best for the future.”

Students at Seaford College celebrated an 11% increase in top grades A* to B, leading to a record number of pupils heading into the sixth form. Headteacher, John Green, who took up the post last September said: “I’m very pleased with the progress and academic strategy we have put in place this year enabling all our students to achieve excellent results.”

At Buckswood, of the 409 GCSE exams sat, the total A* to C pass rate for the school came in above the national average at 71% and 43 of our 58 of Shoreham College pupils picked up with at least 5 A* to C grades.

Pupils at The Towers Convent School in Upper Beeding are reaping the well-deserved rewards of their hard work with 98.4% A* to C grade passes – 50% of which were A* and A grades.

Ardingly College students attained their best set of GCSE results – for the second year running. The average subject grade per candidate was an A, and 25% of the 112 students achieved all A*s or As.

Headteacher at Oathall Edward Rodriguez was celebrating its best ever results and said: “Our students have worked hard and been committed to their studies.

“The support from their teachers and parents has been critical to their success I am so pleased to see that all their efforts have been rewarded.

“It is particularly pleasing to see the trend of improving results continuing at the college.”

Pupils at Eastbourne College managed the strongest outcome since the record was set in 2010 with 118 Year 11 pupils achieving a 100% pass rate and all but one achieved five or more A* to C grades.

Headteacher Simon Davies reflected said: “Our aim, as a mildly selective school, is to continue to see young people through to results that stack up against those of pupils from much more selective schools.

“Through a combination of their own efforts, high expectations, and plenty of support and challenge from those who teach and mentor them, very many of this year’s GCSE candidates have done themselves proud.”

A total of 89% St Paul’s students achieved five or more A* to C grades and 83% achieved this with English and maths.

Louise Higson, Farlington’s headteacher, said: “We are very proud of their individual achievements and with an overall 97% A* to C pass rate there is much to celebrate.

“We are delighted for all of our girls who have worked very hard indeed to achieve these outstanding results.”