IT’S the day that thousands of Hampshire youngsters will remember for the rest of their lives.

But this year will see the first results of reforms brought in by central government to make the exams “more rigorous”.

Maths and English will be graded from nine to one, with courses now “linear” and all exams taken at the end of the two years.

But Southamptony education chief Councillor Darren Paffey said there is “concern” that the broader range of grades available could lead to more “blunders” in marking, and more inaccuracies in the results.

But he added: “Teachers will have had to work harder with new content and a new curriculum and grading. But if there are any problems then the first thing students should do is talk to teachers.”

And head teacher at Totton College, Derek Headrige, said the advice for 16 year olds and their parents is to face up to the results if they don’t quite hit the mark.

He said: “The most important thing is not to bury your head in the sand.

““Learners falling short on their GCSE results should remember that exam results are important, but they don’t stand alone.

“Many colleges are impressed by applicants who show they have pro-actively taken part in extra-curricular activity or gained relevant work experience.

“Therefore learners should now seek advice and do everything possible to ensure they fulfil their potential.”

Subjects other than maths and English will make the change to the new system by 2020.

A Department for Education spokesperson said a grade four will be equivalent to a C, with a seven a low A, and one the lowest grade and equivalent to a G.