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Quality of Education


St Mark’s Church of England Academy empowers students, of all faiths and none, with the inclusive Christian values of love, hope and trust, and promotes academic and character excellence. The curriculum has been carefully designed to draw on their rich and varied backgrounds and ensure that the cross curricular key skills and knowledge required for progress are taught within real world contexts. Students participate in enriching experiences, giving them the ambition, confidence, cultural capital, and employability skills to be successful in their future university and professional careers.


At St Mark’s Academy, we define learning as “A persistent change in long term knowledge or skill.” (The Learning Curriculum 2019). Our comprehensive CPD programme enables staff to understand and explore how students commit knowledge and skills to their long term memories. As teachers, we are constantly learning, exploring and researching how we can develop our curriculum and lesson planning and delivery to ensure that all learners makes excellent progress.

When walking around our school, visitors see Responsive Teaching (Harry Fletcher Wood, 2018) happening in our classrooms: our teachers are adept at planning units of work which are based on students’ existing knowledge, skills, interests and experiences, and which rapidly close gaps and deepen learning for all students. We have a range of approaches in our Responsive Teaching Toolkit which teachers use to check learning throughout lessons, and adapt and respond to student needs live.


We are extremely proud of the impact we have on the life chances of all learners at St Mark’s Academy and feel a sense of privilege to serve our body of students every day. St Mark’s Academy has a three year trend of excellent GCSE outcomes that place us above the national average for progress. Students achieved a Progress 8 score of +0.4 in 2017, +0.47 in 2018 and +0.38 in 2019. High quality teaching and learning supported through our outstanding continuing progression development programme for staff has allowed us to sustain excellent progress over the past three years. This means that students at the Academy make a third to half a grade more progress than students nationally from similar starting points.

In English the Progress 8 score is an exceptional +0.59. 56% of students achieved a grade 5 or above which is above the national average.. In maths there has been a 5% increase in students attaining a grade 5 since 2018. The progress score continues to be positive at +0.2. Our basics 5+ measure is 35%. This is a 5% increase on 2018 attainment. Progress 8 outcomes for the EBac and Open element are above average for the third year running.

Year 2019, Year 11 achieved a new record of 37 grade 9s compared to 17 in 2018. These are equivalent to an A** and mean that students have achieved outcomes that place them in the top 3% of students nationally. In the following subjects students have achieved grade 9s:

  • English Literature- 4 students achieved a grade 9
  • English Language- 2 students achieved a grade 9
  • Triple science- 1 student achieved a grade 9 in all three subjects
  • Design technology- 1 student achieved a grade 9
  • French- 1 student achieved a grade 9
  • History- 3 students achieved a grade 9
  • PE- 1 student achieved a grade 9
  • Spanish- An impressive 9 students achieved a grade 9

As the only Church of England secondary school in the borough we are extremely pleased to acknowledge that 9 students achieved a top grade 9 in RE, achieving a progress score of +0.7. Other fantastic results to celebrate come from:

  • Spanish +1.4
  • Business studies +1.3
  • Biology +1.2
  • Drama +0.9
  • Physics +0.9
  • English Lit +0.8
  • Chemistry +0.8
  • RE +0.7
  • Product design +0.6
  • PE +0.5

Those without KS2 data make up 28% of our cohort which are not represented in our headline Progress 8 scores. These students have made outstanding progress at +0.8 in relation to our baseline assessments. This is a phenomenal achievement and showcases the impressive work that staff, students and our wider community have all done to ensure every student is fully prepared for their exams.

All prior attainment groups continue to make strong progress. Our Pupil Premium students have made better than average progress at +0.14. Once again, our students with English as an additional language have performed exceptionally well and have, on average, a progress score of +0.74. The Percentage of students who staying on after KS4 (destinations) increased from 97% in 2019 to 100% in 2020.





Progress 8 score




Attainment 8 score




Percentage of pupils achieving a strong pass (grade 5 or above) in English and Maths at the end of KS4




Percentage of pupils staying in education or employment after key stage 4 (destinations)




Percentage of pupils entering for the English Baccalaureate (EBacc)




Percentage of pupils who’ve achieved the EBacc




 “These outcomes are testament to our incredible body of staff, the supportive families in our community and, above all our exceptionally dedicated and hardworking students.  It’s an absolute privilege to be leading such a wonderful school that really is changing the life chances of these amazing young people we serve. These results are well deserved and I very much look forward to seeing just how far these young people will go, and of course celebrating with you all in September. “

We are so proud of the students and staff who have worked tirelessly to meet the challenge and rigour of these examinations. Our whole community will now be able to celebrate and we all should feel exceptionally pleased with these outcomes and the contribution that our school continues to make towards securing positive destinations for students. Our learners now have the whole world at their feet and this, following on from our secure KS5 results last week really highlights how St. Mark’s is now firmly established in enabling the young people of Merton to achieve incredible results at every level. I could not be happier.”

Message from Rachael Norman (Chair of Governors)

Wow, these results are absolutely phenomenal and I am thrilled for the whole community. Please pass on my thanks and congratulations to all staff and students as these results were achieved as a result of their immense hard work. The progress 8 score is amazing and a real testament to the value that the academy is adding to the education and learning of all students.”

At KS5 we are proud to be the highest performing Sixth Form in Merton for progress in 2018.

  • 85% of our Sixth Form students have gained places at top universities
  • 18% of all applicants have secured a place to study at a Russell Group University.
  • 77% of PP students going to Uni, compared to 17% nationally.

Below are just a few examples of the courses our students have gone on to study.

Studying at a Russell Group
Molly A (S27) University of Southampton - Games Design and Art
Anisha (K60) Kings College London - NeuroScience
Nikas (K60) Kings College London - Medicine
Hamza (S27) University of Southampton - Philosophy and Mathematics with a Year Abroad
Savannah (B32) Birmingham University - Medicine 
Olu  University of  Bristol - Medicine
Ossob (K60) Kings College London - Midwifery 
Amina (K60) Kings College London - Midwifery

For more information about our school performance please view the Government School Performance Tables.