At Edgbarrow we pride ourselves on strong pastoral relationships across the school, and particularly in the Sixth Form. Students begin Year 12 in tutor groups of approximately 22 with an experienced and dedicated tutor. Where possible we try to put individuals together with their friends, but we aim to make the tutor groups as equal as possible in terms of social, academic or sporting skills. In Year 12,
tutor sessions are held each morning for the first six weeks or so, and then we concentrate on students who need more support at challenging times, giving more independence to those who are coping well.
Students are involved in activities that will improve study skills, increase awareness of career opportunities or enhance life skills ... and we try to have fun too!
This personal contact means that it is easy for tutors to support students and if things start to go wrong, intervene to get students back on track. We try to speak to students as much as possible and encourage them to talk to us about any concerns they have, and we include parents in our conversations so that they can also support their son/daughter throughout the year. Staff really do give huge amounts of time to their students at Edgbarrow.
If students encounter any major obstacles in their life they can also be referred to our dedicated Student Support Manager who gives them time to explore their worries and concerns.
We also have access to a professional counsellor who is available to students on a weekly basis.
We do our best to give our students a wider knowledge of the world and to prepare for life outside Edgbarrow. Every fortnight all of the students attend a PSHEE (personal, social, health and economic education) session in which these themes are discussed.
This year’s programme includes:
- Post-Sixth Form Destinations advice
- University loans / financial advice
- Strategies to reduce stress and anxiety
- Road safety
- A talk from a barrister about careers in law and various other speakers from many walks of life
- Visits from business; charities; volunteer groups
- How to survive the first few weeks of university
- Anything else that students request that we can deliver!
Student Support Group
We try to offer individual support to all our Sixth Formers, at whatever level of ability. This may be helping you with English skills because English is your second language; supporting potential Oxbridge students; supporting applications to med schools; giving university advice; building your confidence; helping with coursework organisation; helping with UCAS Personal Statements, and giving
interview practice for jobs or university. No issue is too big or too small. We work with individuals. We organise visits to Oxford, we invite staff from elite universities to Edgbarrow, and we ensure lots of practice interviews to all students who need them.
Students will meet with their tutor on a regular basis for a one-to-one meeting. At these meetings, their progress will be reviewed, discussed and new targets will be negotiated so that they may continue to move forward. This is their chance to raise any problems that may be affecting their learning and get some very sound advice on how to reach their goals.
Parents’ Evenings & Reports - Academic Monitoring
Whilst all students are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning, their attendance, achievement and effort levels are carefully monitored. There are three sets of grade reports issued through the year and one parents’ evening. We believe that this regular flow of information to students and parents allows students to stay firmly on track. If any problems arise, a chat or a phone call usually helps to solve the problem quickly. We encourage parents to email us whenever they have a concern or simply want an update on progress.
We also encourage students to undertake some form of voluntary activity, in or outside of school as we genuinely want our Sixth Formers to see the community as part of their lives, and to take some responsibility in it. They are very capable young people, and they can play a huge role in our community.
The Progress department is there to support students with general or specific learning difficulties, to enable all students to gain full access to the curriculum. It also serves those students where English is their second language as well as assessing pupils for Access Arrangements.
Students are expected to wear clothing that is suitable for the school environment; in essence, this is their place of work and they are role models for over 1000 students in the main school. Whilst we do not have a specific uniform we would ask that no offensive logos are displayed on clothing and that short skirts, low-cut tops and low-cut trousers are avoided. Jewellery is permitted but students should consider the nature of what they wear and how much, as they would in any place of work.