Cambridge exam results: If A*s were gold medals, Karachi’s students swept the CIE Olympics

From Happy Home to Habib Public, Monday was a day of celebration.

Bureau Report August 13, 2012
Cambridge exam results: If A*s were gold medals, Karachi’s students swept the CIE Olympics


Who would have thought that watching the Spice Girls and Take That perform at the closing ceremony of the 2012 Olympics in London would delay the O’ and A’ Level results from reaching Karachi on Monday. Well, it did.

Farah Imam, the principal of Happy Home School, and a science teacher at The Lyceum School both claimed that this was the first time the results had been delayed. “We usually get the result very early in the morning,” said the Lyceum teacher. “Today, we didn’t get anything till 5am GMT and then we had to sort through the data so that took much longer. But the results this year were brilliant so I guess it was worth the wait.”

Brilliant is perhaps an understatement as Karachi’s main schools all reported exceptional results. The number of students emerging with the coveted A* appeared to be much higher. An A* is gener ally considered scoring between 90 and 100 marks.

The Habib Public School appeared to be bent on supplying the bulk of future mathematicians for Pakistan, as a majority of its O’ Levels students went home with A* and A grades in Math. Ali Zaigham Jafrani (10A*, As) said that he was hoped he would get into Karachi Grammar School.

At the AES School for Girls, Aji Syed, emerged with the best result of 9A*s and one A.

Avicenna school was over the moon with the O’ Level results. With over 320 students sitting the exam, according to Ghulam at the administration desk around 50 students received A*s, and a 100 others received As.

A Lyceum biology teacher said that the results exceeded expectations. “More than 90% of the science students got As and A*s,” she said. “I heard that we only had one B in mathematics.” One the best results at The Lyceum was Alisha Sethi’s 4A*s 1A.

A hyperventilating Myra Merchant at The Lyceum scored 4As, including one in Art. Batool Abid, a prefect who was ushering students in and out of the library for their results, said it was so good that one of the worst things she saw was people crying over Bs. “No one fainted, vomited or threw things around,” she said. “People usually get upset when they didn’t get the grades they wanted.”

Nixor College Dean Nadeem Ghani said that this year’s result was even better. Naseema Kapadia, the headmistress of St Joseph’s Convent School’s Cambridge section, said that their students stood out in World History. “If you compare our result with others, it may not sound like we have a lot of A*s or As,” she said. “We only have 37 students and our school is known for consistently performing well.”

St Patrick’s High School’s A’ Level Dean Dolan Rodriques said that the result was exceptionally good, especially in Maths, Physics and Biology.

The teachers kept handing out the results till 1:30pm to 450 students because of the CIE delay.

Shrieks of excitement echoed down the halls of Foundation Public School’s DHA campus as principal Yasmeen Minhas announced the result. Out of the 168 O’ Level students, 98 scored more than 5As, four students from the North campus got 9As. Around 50 students got A*s and 58 got As in English, Economics, Islamiyat, Biology and English Literature.

At the Happy Home School, principal Imam was ecstatic with Anas Masood’s 7A*s. “Around 68 of our students sat for their O’ Levels and did amazingly well,” she said. “The worst grade we got this year was an E.” Most of her students were planning to go to Nixor College or Beacon House School System for A’ Levels. “Of course, two or three of our students are also planning to apply to Karachi Grammar School but you know they are very strict.

“They only want the crème de la crème. The students who want to pursue social sciences will be applying to The Lyceum School.”

Samreen Mahmood, the O’ Level coordinator at L’ecole, said that the students at the school had performed very well in Sociology, Business Studies and Economics. “The class strength for each of these subjects was 12 students on average. All of them scored As, except for maybe one or two,” she said. “The results at L’ecole have been getting better each year and I think that the student-teacher ratio, which is around 15 children to two teachers, is helping us secure better results.”
Other worries

Habib Public School star student, Anas Miftah, scored 10 A*s.

Danish Gagai, an A’ Level student at Southshore School, claimed that most students at the school were unhappy with their results. “Last year was a disappointment too – it’s more of the same actually,” he said. “Quite a few students had to sit for the same AS level papers this year after a dissatisfying crop of results back in 2011.”

Already off to university

At The Lyceum School (TLS), Sahrish Jaleel (4As) was glad she had met the requirement for Lahore University of Management Science. “I was so nervous in the morning that I puked my guts out before coming to school,” she said.

Fahad Moten (A*, 2As) will be studying Civil Engineering at University College London from September. “Last night, I stopped caring about the result,” he said. “I knew I did well in the exams.”

Samiur Rahman will be attending the University of Maryland. He said that all the university wanted were his SAT scores.

“Almost everyone I know was thrilled to meet their conditional university offers,” said Muhammad Abdullah Qureshi (3As, B). “Now I can finally get some peace.”

British Council can text your result 

The students who sat the exams as private candidates received their results via text message from the British Council on Monday.

The students texted the word ‘result’ to a British Council number using the mobile phone number they listed on the registration forms. This system has the added advantage of making traffic to the website more manageable. This smart method works well for students too.

with reporting by Tooba Masood, Samia Saleem, Usman Liaquat, Ali mehdi and Fahd Siddiqui

Published in The Express Tribune, August 14th, 2012.


ayesha | 11 years ago | Reply

i too did my olevels from beacon house and really appriciate yaur feelings@B:

ayesha | 11 years ago | Reply

@Yo: i really appriciate your post

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