Head of Sixth Form’s Blog

A Happy New Year to you all! For students, welcome back. Term 3 has certainly started with pace and purpose. New Year’s resolutions and strong starts have been the messages in the opening assemblies of the term. Our year 13 students have returned from their pre-Christmas mock examinations and are now making plans with their tutors and teachers on how best make the improvements they need in the remaining months.

With the celebrations of Christmas and New Year’s Day behind us, we will soon be celebrating UCAS Day! The 15th January (UCAS Day) will see the culmination of months of work preparing students who wished to apply for university places. Our students achieve qualifications relevant to their career aims and move on to sustained education, employment, training or apprenticeship and for many of them the UCAS process is a challenging, stressful but necessary period. We are now through it and students will be keeping an eye on their ‘Track’ to oversee their offers and start setting their mind around their next destination. Our ‘Education for Life’ (E4L) programme now shifts its focus to preparing students for life beyond Bournside; ranging from lectures on where students may choose to live and how to shop, to awareness about radicalisation and mental health support.

The recruitment drive for 2019-20 certainly reaches its crescendo at the Sixth Form Open Evening on Thursday 24th January, (5.30-8pm). I look forward to presenting to parents and students about sixth form life and would like to extend my thanks to all of the staff and students who will be in school for those extra hours to support this important event. Feedback each year tells us that it is the sixth former’s themselves that sell our school and this year will be no exception with many faces current and previous, coming back to bring our school alive, showcasing what is great about our sixth form; which now boasts increasing sixth form numbers over 360 and a value-added A level results score that places us in the top 30% of school nationally. We estimate that around 500 visitors will come through our doors. Applications for our sixth for 2019-20 will be live via our school website from 24th January to 15th February.

I certainly look forward to leading our second ‘Sixth Form Health Check’ of the academic year in term 3 and visiting numerous lessons to see the experience our students are getting. I also look forward to seeing many of our sixth formers supporting and performing in this year’s production of ‘We Will Rock You’ that opens on 17th January. We are so proud of all of our students who willingly give up their time to support the school production – on and off the stage.

As always, the sixth form will continue to move with purpose and pace. The ethos, drive and demand can be felt since the return from Christmas. I am very much looking forward to seeing how the year continues to progress, especially now we are reaching the ‘sharp end’ with exam season fast approaching.

Mike Stratford
Assistant Headteacher