The Sixth Form offers an intellectual and a personal challenge. Their minds are exercised as they wrestle with the more challenging A Level material, and horizons are broadened as they think more urgently about university and future careers, but I think the Sixth Form should also allow students the opportunity to spread their wings and to take more responsibility – that means taking personal ownership of their studies and also taking responsibility for others. At Pangbourne we take time to teach them some leadership theory but, more importantly, we also give them plenty of opportunity to practise it.
The two Sixth Form years are generally the most enjoyable and memorable of the Pangbourne experience. It is a time when students take control of their subjects with a greater emphasis on independent learning.
Life in and outside of the classroom begins to take on a different and more rewarding perspective, where students enjoy immersing themselves in study areas they have chosen for themselves.
Class sizes become much smaller, the relationship with teachers becomes less formal and students become more autonomous in shaping their own destinies.
Outside of the classroom, there are sporting, musical and dramatic activities as well as societies and expeditions for students to make the most of their time in Sixth Form.
However, academic progress is the priority and as such the College challenges students to be committed, interested and involved; be punctual, meticulous and rigorous in their work; use time wisely; be open-minded and respect the opinions of others; question what they are being told; and, above all, be open to and enthusiastic about new ideas.
Whether continuing their Pangbourne education from Form 5 (Year 11) or entering the Sixth Form from elsewhere, students are welcomed into an environment which adopts a holistic approach to the individual and expects Sixth Formers to take on the responsibility of being ambassadors to the younger year groups and leading by example.
The overwhelming majority of the leavers go on to university courses, many at Russell Group universities, and there have also been some students successful in gaining places at the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford.
Notable successes by Sixth Formers in the academic year ending July 2014, have included a Sixth Form girl having her art work shortlisted for the Royal Academy summer online exhibition; the rowing team swooping to victory in the National Schools Regatta; and more than 20 Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Award students being invited to St James’s Palace for a celebration ceremony.
Mr James Bamforth
Head of Sixth Form
Telephone: 0118 9766 723