Sixth Form Hub

Birchwood’s Sixth Form offers a wide range of courses and opportunities for post-16 students.

We offer the highest level of sixth-form education in a challenging, exciting and supportive environment.

“Your dreams, your future, our challenge”

Welcome to Birchwood's Sixth Form

The Sixth Form has an academic feel; we only offer highly-challenging and rigorous A Level and Level 3 qualifications which are respected by employers and universities. The school encourages its Sixth Formers to become independent learners at the same time as taking direct responsibility for the management of the considerable expectations made of them.

Students are progressively given more autonomy and independence but within a firm framework of clear support and guidance. Progress is closely monitored through day-to-day contact with tutors and with subject teachers. Students in the Sixth Form are expected to devote at least 15-20 hours per week to their studies, in addition to their time spent in lessons. In recognition of the significant demands of this study it is also expected that no student has more than ten hours paid employment.

The School’s aim is that each student achieves their full potential; there cannot be compromises with commitments that will undermine this aspiration.

The Sixth Form Pastoral Team consists of staff, whom are specialists, that ensure students receive the very best support over their two years in the Sixth Form. The Sixth Form is led by Mr Ian Torrance, who as Head of Sixth Form, has overall responsibility and provides strategic direction and leadership to the sixth form community.

Each year group is then supported specifically by an assigned Form Tutor, who will work closely with the students in their respective year groups on a day-to-day basis. In particular the Form Tutor gains a holistic overview of each student’s progress and is the first point of contact for parents in any instance.

As Assistant Head of Sixth Form, Mr Jamie Clift plays a leading role in ensuring that students in Year 12 settle well in to sixth form life. He is responsible in keeping a watchful eye on students during this crucial transition as they move to become independent learners within their chosen subjects. Mr Clift also oversees our Level 3 Qualification Programme, which include all our BTEC pathways, applied courses and the Football Academy.

Mrs Judith Crimes is our Careers Lead and is based in the Sixth Form Centre on a full-time basis, which means that she is intrinsic to daily life in the Sixth Form. With increasing numbers of students deciding not to apply to university and instead head into apprenticeships or the ‘world of work’, Mrs Crimes is able to provide advice to students and has been instrumental in ensuring that all students leave our doors with a clear direction of their next steps.

Last, but by no means least, Miss Laura Petchey who as Sixth Form Administrator performs a vital role in overseeing many aspects of Sixth Form life from organising interviews, to communication with parents, through to the oversight of the whole of application process.

All students who join Birchwood Sixth Form are expected to support the ethos of the School. We use an extensive House system to foster collegiality and competition within the school; students will be placed in one of four houses; Dane, Hadham, Stort or Waytemoree and they are expected to become involved in a broad range of school activities. Sixth Form study is a partnership between the student, School and family.

The highest standards of attendance and punctuality are expected from our students. Where a student does not meet the School’s high expectations, quick action is taken to improve matters. A continuing inability to meet the requirements made of all Sixth Formers regarding work, attendance, punctuality and uniform will lead to a review of the student’s future in the School. In particular, all students are expected in school by 8.30am each morning and are expected to attend the weekly assembly.

Sixth Formers wear their own smart and distinctive attire in recognition of their seniority and the way the whole school looks to them for leadership and example. It is therefore expected that Sixth Formers wear professional business dress.  The dress code requirements are made clear to students before entry to the Sixth Form and failure to meet them will be addressed speedily. As a parent, it is expected that you will support the school without reservation with regards to uniform.

Students naturally play an active part in the wider life of the Sixth Form and the School. They have representation on the Student Council and are strongly involved in a breadth of clubs and associations. These range from Sports Clubs to working groups that look at student voice and societies continually form themselves in response to the emergence of fresh interests and enthusiasms. Sixth Formers also support lower school students, organise trips and social events, raise funds for charity, and manage their own Common Room. The School is well known for the exciting national and international trips it runs and Sixth Form students customarily take part in many of them.

Sixth Formers continue to play a major part in the vibrant musical, dramatic and sporting life of the School. In addition, Sixth Formers have a timetabled lesson of ‘Enrichment’ each week when they actively participate in an array of indoor and outdoor activities. Our enrichment programme runs on a Wednesday afternoon in a University style format. The Head of Sixth Form also organises a programme of visiting speakers to address the students on a variety of relevant topics through our PSHE programme which runs throughout the year.

Service to the School is one of its great strengths and exemplifies the life in the sixth form, where Sixth Formers play a crucial role in this work. The Sixth Form has a structure of various leadership roles that all students are encouraged and expected to take on. These include; Sixth Form Leadership Team, Senior Prefects, House Captains, Mentor Prefects, Events & Charity Prefects, Duty Prefects and Environment & Wellbeing Prefects. Whilst the Sixth Form Leadership and House Captains have wider school responsibilities, Senior Prefects have administrative and social responsibilities specifically within the Sixth Form. Sixth Formers that are appointed as prefects will be expected to work in collaboration with peers and staff and will be given day-to-day jobs and longer-term duties in the running of the School. Whilst Sixth Formers will clearly be given a great deal of responsibility, the rewards for these are the privileges the school grants them and the opportunity to be part of such a vibrant and successful community.

Students in the Sixth Form are carefully guided through the whole process of university/careers applications. Early on, Sixth Formers receive extensive tuition whilst also having access to an excellently stocked Careers and Higher Education library. For UCAS applications, once the student is ready, they then work closely with their tutors, Sixth Form staff, the Head of Sixth Form in ensuring they submit the very best university application form they can. A first class careers guidance service is also available to any student who wishes to enter a career when leaving the Sixth Form. The aim of the School is that all students will leave well equipped for the next stage of their lives, whether it is university, an apprenticeship or a job.

Head of Year

ITE – Mr I Torrance (PE)

Tutors

ABT – Mr Barratt (PE)

EDH – Mrs Dervish (Technology)

KMS – Mrs Mangin-Griffiths (MFL)

LJN – Mrs Jackson (EPA)

LPT – Miss Perrett (PE)

MSR – Mr Sabur (Humanities)

RNT – Mr Noblett (PE)

SLE – Mr Levey (Social Sciences)

THS – Miss Harris (Humanities)

ZBL – Miss Bull (Maths)

Support Staff

JCS – Mrs Crimes (Careers)
LPY – Mrs Petchey (Sixth Form Administrator)

Sixth Form Student Leadership Team

We are a team of students passionate about Birchwood and striving to make a difference in our school. Acting upon ideas from students is a core value of our team and we’re currently completing multiple projects to improve the Sixth Form’s environment and facilities. We all look forward to welcoming the new Year 12s into our community and hearing their ideas on our Sixth Form

Get Involved!

Students have the opportunity to participate in a variety of extracurricular activities from sport, music and drama to community service programs.

Advice and Support

Our staff are dedicated and resourceful to provide guidance and advice on all areas of school life, subjects and future careers.

Quick Links

Sixth Form News

Presents for the Elderly

Presents for the Elderly

Our lovely Sixth Form students are off to Broome End care home with all the presents they have collected.


Sixth Form Celebration Evening

Celebration Evening Year 13

At the beginning of term we welcomed back our former Year 13 students to celebrate their exam and whole school achievements before they headed off to pastures new.

Our guest speaker, Mr Fred Gray, Community Governor for the school, presented the awards and spoke about his life in the Armed Forces and his current role in the City of London as a compliance officer and the life skills they had taught him.  This year’s co-hort of students attained the best A-Level results ever achieved in the school’s history following on from our similar successes last year.

We wish them well in their future careers and studies.