August 17, 2017, by Charlotte Anscombe

Brothers are heading to the University of Nottingham after securing A* A level’s at NUAST

Brothers Mujahid and Mustaqueem Shiffa have both accepted places at the University of Nottingham after securing 3 A*s each in Physics, Chemistry and Maths,  at Nottingham University Academy of Science and Technology (NUAST).

Mujahid (18) is going on to study Natural Sciences and Mustaqueem (16) is going to study Physics.

The boys results come as for the second year in a row,  NUAST has delivered outstanding A Level and Level 3 qualification results across the board.

Students have achieved a 100% pass in all subjects with over 46 % of A level students having achieved A* or A in at least one subject and the A*-C pass rate is 84%.

Students studying vocational courses in Engineering and ICT have achieved remarkable results with the average grade being Distinction*.  91% of students have achieved a distinction or higher in the qualifications studied equivalent to an A or A* grade.

The value added score, the measure of achievement based against student’s previous performance at GCSE level is very high at 0.67 and will once again position NUAST as one of the top performing sixth forms in the City and County of Nottingham.

Sponsored by the University of Nottingham and run by the Nova Education Trust, NUAST has been open for three years and has rapidly developed a reputation for itself as the leading STEM GCSE and A level provider in Nottingham City.  The Academy received an overall OFSTED grade of ‘Good’ in June 2017 with the 6th form being judged ‘Outstanding’ during the same inspection.

The Shiffa brothers were home educated up to GCSE level but Sanah Shiffa, the boys mother explained:“After GCSE, Home Schooling support is very difficult to find.  NUAST was the only Academy who could accommodate both boys at A level.  Other schools would not accept Mustaqueem on A level courses at 14 years of age even though he had completed his GCSEs at home.  We are grateful for the chance NUAST gave them and the support they have offered”.

The University of Nottingham, as sponsors of the Academy, have developed a very close working relationship with both staff and students.  Bob White, Principal of NUAST describes that relationship as:“Absolutely critical to the work we do here at NUAST.  The benefits of having a world class university offering academic and pastoral support to our students cannot be underestimated.  

NUAST is about developing passion and aspiration and there is nothing more aspirational than our students attending degree level lectures, being mentored by undergraduates and having access to the knowledge and facilities of such an important global university.”

These benefits become particularly tangible when students from NUAST secure places on undergraduate courses at the university. This year 17% (12 students (Provisional)) of the Year 13 cohort (72) have applied and accepted places at the University of Nottingham.

Mujahid Shiffa (18) said: “The support from the University has been essential.  Attending lectures was amazing and really helped in my UCAS personal statement and in my interview.”

The brother’s Father, Mohammed Shiffa, added that the links with the university have formed “a bridge that means they feel confident starting at the university.”  He went on to add:“I grew up in Nottingham and NUAST is the opposite of the education I received.  My school experience was just clocking in and clocking out.  I didn’t know my teachers and they didn’t know me. There was nothing like NUAST.  The mechanisms NUAST has in place to support students are unique and it has proved to be an amazing opportunity for our boys. Staff have been there for them both academically and in terms of pastoral care”

The boys celebrate with their parents

Mujahid added:“We were emailing questions to staff in the weeks before the exams at 9 and 10pm and we were getting answers straight back. We will both keep visiting and supporting NUAST because we don’t want to loose the link with those staff.”

Sarah Speight, Professor of Higher Education and Associate Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Teaching and Learning at The University of Nottingham, said:

“Today is a such a big day for NUAST’s A-level students – there will be the full range of emotions as they receive those precious results that will determine their next steps. There will also be some stand-out stories of hard work and achievement.

 “Mujahid and Mustaqueem have certainly given us one of these. They have taken all NUAST can give them and turned it into gold – the best A-level grades they could get to secure their places with us to study Physics and Natural Sciences. Congratulations to you both – we are proud of you already and looking forward to welcoming you to the University next month.”

With its recent OFSTED rating and reputation for academic achievement in the STEM subjects, Bob White, Principal is optimistic for the future.

“Starting a new school is always a massive challenge and NUAST has been no exception.  It has been important to the whole team at NUAST that we delivered the sponsors original vision of a centre of excellence for STEM education in Nottingham. Through the support of the University of Nottingham as sponsor along with our business and industry partners, NUAST is now realising that ambition.”


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