This figures – bright Jake has the X2-factor
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Most of us struggle to figure out even the most basic of sums.
But Jake Dixon has found the formula for success – after passing his maths GCSE three years early.
Despite sitting the exam in January when he was only 12 years old, Jake, from Oulton Broad, secured his pass in the foundation level maths paper – scoring an amazing 98.3pc mark that was the highest of any student at Benjamin Britten High School, where his fellow candidates were all 15 or 16.
Head of maths at the school, Anthony Vaughan-Evans, said Jake's C grade – the maximum he could achieve in the foundation level exam – was a reflection of how gifted he was in the subject.
'Jake is an extremely talented mathematician – probably the most talented mathematician I have come across,' he said. 'I have already started teaching him bits of A-level maths.
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'He actually got 98.3pc in the exam – the highest mark of the whole school – when he was aged 12.'
'Even though all the school's year 11 students took the exam, Jake was the only year eight student to sit the AQA maths paper and Mr Vaughan-Evans said: 'He beat them all by a long way'.
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He added: 'I have been teaching maths for nine years and am now head of department. I've probably seen about 2,000 to 3,000 kids in that time and he is head and shoulders above them all.'
A former pupil of Lothingland Middle School and Oulton Broad Primary School, Jake has been at Benjamin Britten for nearly two years. He was identified by staff in year seven – his first year at the high school – as being an exceptionally gifted and talented mathematician, and was earmarked to take his GCSE early.
A school spokesman said: 'Jake was fast-tracked as he was working well above his targets in the subject.'
Mr Vaughan-Evans added: 'In the foundation level paper, the maximum you can get is a C grade, so at the end of this year, Jake will take the higher paper in GCSE maths and get an A-star.
'In years nine, 10 and 11 I would imagine we'll have to start teaching him A-level and he will probably get through that too, so by the end of year 11 he will be onto university-level questions.'
Jake is already setting his sights on a place at Cambridge University where, naturally, he hopes to study maths. He is also is keen to pursue mathematics as a career – perhaps even as a teacher.
He told The Journal: 'I enjoy most subjects but maths is my favourite. I would like to do anything maths-related in the future. I feel really lucky and am really grateful to have been allowed to do the exam.'
With his parents and grandparents 'extremely proud' of him, staff at Benjamin Britten High are also delighted at his progress.
Mr Vaughan-Evans said: 'I have been privileged to teach Jake. It makes my job worthwhile seeing how his brain works and having that inherent ability.
'He has also got quite a talented brother coming up through the school (12-year-old Josh, who is in year seven).'
He added: 'Jake has inspired others as well, as the children have been asking me if they can do their GCSEs earlier... They aspire to match Jake and want to beat him – he is inspiring a whole year group.'