Skip to main content

A-level results: Russian-inspired maths free schools gain top grades

King's College Mathematics School and Exeter Mathematics School achieve top marks

News article image

King's College Mathematics School and Exeter Mathematics School achieve top marks

Two specialist maths free schools, inspired by super-selective maths and physics institutions in Russia, have gained some of the best A-level results in the country, rivalling top-performing independent schools.

King’s College London Mathematics School had 100 per cent of its pupils achieving either an A* or A in maths, with all 65 now off to Oxbridge or other Russell Group universities.

More than 80 per cent of students at Exeter Mathematics School gained A*, A or B across all subjects, and 45 per cent achieved an A* result in maths.  

The schools are the brainchild of former education secretary Michael Gove and his then adviser Dominic Cummings.

Back in 2012, they set out to create highly specialised maths schools with links to universities, based on the Kolmogorov Physics and Mathematics Schools in Moscow.

The colleges were founded by the Russian mathematician Andrei Kolmogorov and were part of the Moscow State University.

Both Mr Gove and Mr Cummings wanted to create the free schools in an attempt to boost the take-up and expertise in maths among state school students.

The decision to establish UK versions of the schools has proved successful, with both King's and Exeter sending around 15 per cent of their students to either Oxford or Cambridge universities.

'A momentous day for us'

Dan Abramson, headteacher at King's, said it was a “momentous day” for his students.

“So many of them have achieved so well,” he said. “I’m immensely proud of them, and admire them for the ambition, courage and determination that took them to such evident success.

“I’d like to join them in thanking the hard work of their teachers, as well as all the people at King’s who have supported and helped to nurture our young school, that after just two years has shown it is one of the top state schools in the country."

Exeter's head, Kerry Burnham, added: “We have been open a short time, but these young people and the teachers have done remarkable things. This is due to the supportive, informal atmosphere at the school and the stimulating curriculum delivered by our outstanding teachers.”

Want to keep up with the latest education news and opinion? Follow TES on Twitter and like TES on Facebook

Log in or register for FREE to continue reading.

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you