VARNDEAN College maintained impressive A-level results this year, with the majority of students delighted with their results despite a slight decline in top grades.

The college saw an overall A-level pass rate of 97.2 per cent out of 1,105 exams, with 78 per cent of students achieving A*-C grades.

Despite a change in the A-level system, which means AS levels – if sat by students – do not count towards their final grades, Varndean has kept its scores at similar levels.

Deputy principal Jill Arnold praised students and staff for their hard work over the past two years, and said the new system had not affected her college.

Ms Arnold said: “The process into the new system has been much more stable than I expected. The students have been fine with it and teachers have coped well.

“I personally prefer having AS exams as well, but this year’s results have been as good as any other year, which shows the change has not made a difference.

“I am extremely proud of all the students. They have worked very hard and so have the staff. We are a very supportive college and we are also a very inclusive one, too.

“Once again Varndean looks set to have outstanding value added, as students have achieved higher grades than their GCSE results originally predicted.”

The A*-B threshold has remained around the same mark as last year, with just a 0.4 per cent drop.

Varndean’s arts department enjoyed a fine year, with a 100 per cent pass rate from 177 students across five courses. 92 per cent of them achieved A*-C, and 22.6 per cent bagged A* grades.

Jonathan Smith, programme leader for the department, said: “We’ve got some great students who come here. They work really hard. Also, Brighton is a creative city. We take students on trips to galleries which helps.

“The 100 per cent pass rate is not a fluke. It is a consistent figure year after year in our department.”