My name is Gary Walker and I act as co-head of Sixth Form, along with my colleague, Greg Hacksley. Both Greg and I are both responsible for a year group during their time in the Sixth Form and we work alongside our Sixth Form deputies, Mary Brereton; Chris Pines; Teresa Gott and Andrew Brien. Greg and I coordinate and manage the pastoral care, academic monitoring and Higher Education support for the students in our care.
The School’s Sixth Form provides a stimulating environment for purposeful academic study. The Sixth Form Centre is located in Aquis Court and offers spacious, light, accommodation and excellent study facilities for Sixth Formers, including a large private study area, wifi and a Starbucks Sixth Form café, serving a variety of snacks, sandwiches and hot and cold drinks.
We work on the assumption that our students have made an active choice to continue with their studies, and are following courses for which they have opted freely and for which they have a genuine motivation.
We see A level study as the prelude to higher education, and a stage in the process not only of learning, but of learning how to learn. Expectations of self-discipline, self-motivation and self-organisation are correspondingly high, but not unrealistically so.
We recognise that a sixteen year old GCSE student does not turn overnight into an embryonic undergraduate, but we wish our students to view the Sixth Form as the first two years of a five-year period, that culminates in the gaining of a degree.
St Albans School Sixth Form welcomes girls, who comprise a significant and highly successful minority of our students.
Girls have the opportunity to take part in the full range of extra-curricular activities, many of which may be new to them, such as the CCF, mountaineering and a wide variety of sports. They enjoy the challenge and sense of achievement which these present. The unique environment and friendly atmosphere at St Albans School encourages girls to gain in confidence in a co-educational environment and makes an ideal transition from school to university. Mrs Gott, one of the Deputy Heads of Sixth Form, has particular responsibility for the welfare of all new entrants into the Sixth Form throughout their two years with us.
Pastoral care is a significant strength of the School and every teacher in the School has a pastoral role. The School’s 2014 ISI Inspection Report cited pastoral care as ‘excellent’ and noted that each pupil was ‘well-known and valued as an individual’ as the staff know their pupils ‘extremely well and foster an excellent atmosphere of trust and safety, leading to strong and positive relationships’.
All our pupils, from First to Sixth Form, are members of a tutor group, organised by year.
In the Sixth Form College, there are two Heads and each is responsible for the pastoral and academic welfare of a cohort of students throughout their two years in the Sixth Form. At any given time, therefore, there will be a Head of Upper Sixth and Head of Lower Sixth working with the four Deputy Heads of Sixth Form and a team of tutors. The tutor is the first point of contact for parents and oversees the personal and academic welfare of pupils, through a combination of informal contact and tutor periods.
Students in the Sixth Form College are allocated to tutor groups of typically 15 students, each with a tutor responsible for the welfare, pastoral care and guidance of his or her tutees. The two Heads of Sixth Form, in conjunction with the Deputy Heads of Sixth Form, co-ordinate the pastoral work of tutors and the programme of Higher Education guidance, whereby tutors meet with their tutees twice a day and play a key role in the delivery of our PSHEE programme and in ensuring that their tutees are healthy, both mentally and physically.
The School Nurses and Chaplain make an important contribution to our pastoral provision, while the Counsellor, who is not a member of staff, is available each week for confidential consultation.
Parents can meet their child’s teachers and tutors at Parents’ Consultation Evenings and at a number of informal social occasions during the year.
In 2017, St Albans School Sixth Formers have achieved a record 34% of A* grades, beating the previous best of 25% in 2015. Nine pupils achieved 4 A*s and twenty-two pupils achieved at least 3 A*s. Forty-four candidates (32% of our entry) gained at least 2 A*s and seventy-two pupils (53% of our entry) gained at least 1A*. Furthermore, over 92% achieved A*-B grades, the most widely-recognised measure of A Level success. This year, A* and A grades account for 70% of all grades.
|A LEVEL (not including GS)|
|Percentage pass rate||100|
|Percentage grades A*, A & B||91|
|Percentage grades A* & A||70|
|Percentage grade A*||23|
|UCAS points per entry||47.3|
|UCAS points per candidate||150.7|
|A LEVEL (with Extended Project)|
|UCAS points per entry||47.3|
|UCAS points per candidate||156.7|
Amongst the most successful candidates who all achieved a clean sweep of 4 A* grades are: Matthew Crossley; James Freeman; Lucy Gardner; Sam Goymer; Josh Oliver; Daniel Ross; Lucas Spencer; Leon Sui; Jacob Vialou-Clark.
With 3 A* grades are Jonny Ascott; Stephanie Broomhead; Lydia Edwards; Ed Holtom; Thomas Hopper; Darcey Lucas; Maria Moran; Spencer Rance; Alice Semark; Anne-Marie Sous; Hugo Stephens; Euan Wallace and Spencer Yasotharan.
“I am delighted by this year’s outstanding A Level results, which are testament to the commitment and dedication shown by our Sixth Formers and our teaching staff. I congratulate all our leavers and wish them every success in the future.”
The minimum requirements for entry to the Sixth Form for external candidates in September 2017 are:
|16+ Information Evening||Thursday 12 October 2017|
|Deadline for Scholarship Applications||Friday 3 November 2017|
|Deadline for Bursary Applications||15 December 2017|
|16+ Scholarship Exams and Interviews||Saturday 11 November 2017 (Offers Posted 30 November)|