RECORD-BREAKING pupils have made history in Runcorn

Year 11 students at The Grange School returned to celebrate their achievements at a special graduation ceremony.

The teenagers were the first learners to enrol in the new £45.6 million school on Latham Avenue, home to nursery, infant, junior and secondary pupils.

They were also the first to sit the new style GCSE exams and the first year group to gain at least one qualification.

Every student who sat Chemistry and the newly introduced photography achieved a grade C or above.

Students who excelled in English, maths, science and sport received special prizes.

Headteacher Janette Vincent told the students: “It is a real testament to the hard work you have put and a tribute to the dedication and professionalism of your teachers.

“Whatever you want to achieve in life will take hard work but you are all capable of it.

“I hope your time at The Grange stays with you throughout your life. It has given you the skills and the aspiration, perseverance and determination you need to succeed.”

Special recognition was given to pupils who made a special contribution to school life.

Outgoing head girl Kelsey May netted a haul of 10 GCSEs including a grade nine in English Language.

Kelsey said: “I have many great memories and I hope to come back often to see my former teachers and let them know how I am getting on.”

Former head boy Thomas Basson, said: “I cannot thank my teachers enough for the help and support they gave me during the exam period, it really did make all the difference.”

Triple Olympian swimmer James Goddard, who represented Team GB in the backstroke at the Athens, Beijing and London 2012 Games, was guest of honour.

James, 34, urged students to follow their dreams.

He said: “One of my proudest moments was to put on the Team GB tracksuit.

“Swimming has given me some great memories and taken me to some amazing places.

“Most importantly it was something I loved to do. That is my message to you. If you chose to do something with your life that you really love doing, nothing can stop you.”