St Andrew the Apostle Schools unveils plans for new 6th Form

LONDON – St Andrew the Apostle School’s new 6th Form will have an academic focus with most of its curriculum featuring A-Level courses for students expecting to go to university.

Detailed plans for the 6th Form, which is due to open with brand new facilities at North London Business Park in September 2018, were unveiled on Thursday (16 November) at an Open Evening for Year 11 students and their parents.

(L-R) Rob Ahearn – Headteacher, Karen Lynch – CEO Russell Education Trust, Mary Karaolis – Governor, Mike Michael – Deputy Headteacher and 6th Form Development Lead, Martin O’Sullivan – RET Consultant for Post 16 Education, Michael Vassiliou – Deputy Headeacher.

Students were given the opportunity to discuss their subject choices, application process and other questions about life in a 6th Form with subject experts, teaching staff and representatives from the school’s sponsor, the Russell Education Trust. RET currently runs the highest achieving multi-academy in the country and has already opened two 6th Forms in Bristol and Essex.

RET’s 6th Form Advisor, Mr. Martin O’Sullivan, told a packed hall, “Going the extra mile for 6th Form students will be an integral part of the RET package in which every possible support and opportunity is in place to ensure that each student looks amazing on an application form, whether for university, employment or other work-based training.

“Most of our courses will be A-Level courses, though we will be offering selected BTEC Level 3 courses with a greater practical element.”

He described the hard work that goes on behind the scenes to create a successful 6th Form and said the first priority would be the appointment of the best teachers for first-class teaching. He added that pastoral care was at the forefront of everything they do.

“Running alongside effective teaching, it is vital that we provide a crutch when things get difficult. Life can be incredibly stressful for both students, who have to deal with additional responsibilities and opportunities with the added confusion of greater freedom, and parents who have to ensure that their children are not burning the candle at both ends and ruining their chances of long term success for short term gains.”

Headteacher, Mr Rob Ahearn, said he was very proud of the progress made so far and was looking forward to building a vibrant, successful 6th Form which would inherit and build on many of the successful features of St Andrew the Apostle School. These included the high-quality of the teachers, belonging to an outstanding trust and being an inclusive school.

“As a Greek Orthodox secondary school, there is an emphasis on broad Christian values of forgiveness, responsibility, kindness and respect for others which leads to very high expectations in terms of behaviour and academic endeavour.

“We are an inclusive school where we hope even those joining us from elsewhere will quickly feel a part of the school.  We may be smaller than some 6th Forms, but we believe that will mean that no one will be ignored or over looked,” stated Mr. Ahearn, adding that the new block will have outstanding facilities to provide a safe and comfortable working environment.

He stressed that St Andrew the Apostle 6th Form students would be setting an example to younger students and would be expected to dress appropriately for a working day ‘in the office’ as part of their preparation for their future aspirations and careers.  They would “enjoy a unique experience of leading the way in helping to build the 6th Form of the future”.

Founding student, Marianna Christodoulou, is hoping to study English Literature, Psychology and Philosophy & Ethics. She said, “I want to stay on because everyone is so enthusiastic about establishing the new 6th Form. I love the family atmosphere, my friends, teachers – the whole ethos.”

Fellow Year 11 student, Guy Coker, who wants to go on to university to study maths, has visited other schools but is expecting to stay on too. He explained, “The wide variety of subjects and the dedication of the teachers means that it’s definitely worth taking the opportunity that is being offered at St Andrew.”

Deputy Headteacher and 6th Form Development Lead, Mr. Mike Michael, was delighted with the success of the evening and the interest shown by existing and external students in the new 6th Form.

“It’s been such a positive night, with so much enthusiasm from students and parents keen to make the right choices for the next stage of their education. We hope that many will be joining us for a 6th Form taster day on Friday 5 January,” he concluded.

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