Students at a small number of international schools in Vietnam sat their A Levels in May – and the results released so far from Nord Anglia's British Vietnamese International School, Hanoi,and British Vietnamese International School, Ho Chi Minh City, show that students are beating global averages.
The proportion of students achieving the top grades at A Level has fallen to its lowest level for more than a decade according to the UK's Joint Council for Qualifications, with some 25.5% achieving an A Grade or higher, whilst 75.8% received a C or above (down from 77% in 2018 and the lowest level for 10 years).
The GCE Advanced Level or International A Level is a secondary school leaving qualification in the UK and an international school qualification worldwide. Students normally sit three A Levels, but some sit four, and others as few as two.
Used by University and College admissions services around the world, A Levels remain one of the most widely recognised pre-university and college entry examinations. Figures from UCAS (the University and College Admissions Service in the UK, which coordinates university placements across the country) show that 408,960 Sixth Formers from the UK and overseas have had places confirmed, while among UK students alone, 348,890 applicants have been accepted - a 1% fall compared to 2018.
There’s only a small number of Vietnam’s 100-plus international schools that offer A Levels, with the majority following the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme at college level instead.
The international schools that do offer GCE/International A Levels include: British Vietnamese International School, Hanoi; British Vietnamese International School, Ho Chi Minh City; Horizon International Bilingual School, Hanoi (HIBS); Singapore International School, Gamuda Gardens; and Singapore International School, Saigon South.
The International School@ParkCity Hanoi, which opened in 2019, plans to offer A Levels once it opens Years 9-13 from 2020-24.
British Vietnamese International School, Hanoi reported that students achieved a pass rate of 100% in A Levels this year, an improvement on last year, despite there being slightly fewer examinees than in 2018. 15% were A*-A grades, 38% A*-B, and 67% A*-C.
Principal of BVIS Hanoi Mark Sayer, said: "The 100% A Level pass rate is outstanding. This cohort itself was smaller than the previous year, with nearly 60% of this year’s examinees attending the school for under two years. This shows the high quality of the teaching, of facilities and the preparation offered by teaching staff."
Graduating student, Nguyen Cong Minh Duc who completed Year 13 in June of this year, has secured a place at Imperial College London to study Biological Science after achieving one A* and two A grades.
He said: “I was excited when I opened my results as I realised my ambition to go to this university had been achieved. I am looking forward to moving to London next month to start my studies.”
British Vietnamese International School, Ho Chi Minh City slightly outperfomed its sister school in Hanoi with 24% of grades at A*-A. 50% of all A Level grades were A*-B, 64% of were at C grade or above, 8% of the grades achieved were A* grades
The school's top performing students were Lam Thuy Hien, Ngo Thanh Nha and Tran Ngoc Que Nhien who all attained 100% A or A* grades.
BVIS HCMC's principal Simon Higham said: "Year on year, our Year 11 and Year 13 students are producing an excellent set of examination results at BVIS, both in IGCSE and A Level. This is due to the continuous hard work of our students, teachers and whole school community within our well-established, caring environment that does not have any limits to learning."