A teacher has been dubbed “the maths whisperer” after his entire class of 30 pupils achieved A* grades at GCSE – six months early.
Francis Elive, 55, has been hailed a hero by his teenage comprehensive pupils after helping them achieve top grades.
The youngsters were so clued up on their maths they were able to sit the exam six months early to bag their A* grades as soon as possible.
Francis, who teaches at 1,400-pupil Fitzalan High School in Leckwith, Cardiff, has been praised for his “passionate” approach to his subject.
But he said: “There’s no secret method. All my pupils have worked very hard and I’m really proud of them.”
Assistant head Jo Kemp said the Year 11 class opened their results together – and were stunned to all bag top grades.
She said: “We did a countdown so they all opened their results at the same time.
“There was a gasp as they saw their results and then all realised they had the same.”
They have been taught by Francis since starting in Year 7 at the school, which achieved a “double excellent” in a recent inspection.
Ms Kemp added: “We call him the maths whisperer. He’s passionate about his subject and he is quite a reserved man.
“But he was just on pins like an expectant dad – how you would want a teacher of your children to be feeling.
“He instills the belief that they have practised the hardest maths that they have to ever to face so why be scared of an exam?
“It’s the belief that they absolutely can do it, and the children think it’s magic.”
According to the most recent statistics just 14% of Welsh pupils achieved an A* grade in GCSE maths last year.