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2016-2017 Parents’ Guide


Welcome Moving on from school to sixth form is an exciting time for everyone involved. Our students are our priority and we value your involvement during their time here with us. We’ve put together this short guide to give you an insight into daily life here at the Sixth Form, including how we support your son or daughter, useful contacts and guidance on studying at home. We are immensely proud of becoming the fourth largest provider of A-level study locally, our 98% pass rate and 92% of students who progress on to top universities including Kings’ College London and the University of York. We look forward to working together to achieve your son or daughter’s full potential. We hope you find the information here useful. If there is anything else you need to know, we will be happy to answer any queries.

Applying for a place at The Bedford Sixth Form There are a few important steps between your son or daughter submitting their application and then joining us the following September. Here we outline the key stages to enable you to keep track of the whole process: 1. Applications must be submitted by 31 May 2016. 2. Your son or daughter will hear from us, usually within five working days, inviting them to attend an interview with one of our team. This is a chance to ask any questions and find out more about their courses and the facilities. 3. Within two weeks of the interview, your son or daughter will hear whether they have been successful. An offer of a place at The Bedford Sixth Form will be subject to them achieving the relevant entry requirements i.e. subject to their GCSE results.

I look forward to meeting you soon.

4. They will then be invited to attend our special welcome event at the end of the summer term. This is a great chance to meet fellow students, teachers and get to know the Sixth Form.

Paul Clarkson

5. Finally, at the end of August, your son or daughter will be invited to come to the Sixth Form to review their GCSE results and finalise their place for September.


6. Term starts in September, with an induction programme to ensure that your son or daughter is ready for teaching which commences on Monday 12 September 2016.


Any questions? Call us on 01234 291291


Term dates for 2016-2017 The Bedford Sixth Form’s term dates do not always coincide with local school holidays, so please be aware of the following: Autumn Term 2016 Monday 12 September 2016 – Friday 16 December 2016 HALF-TERM: Monday 24 October 2016 – Friday 28 October 2016 Spring Term 2017 Monday 9 January 2017 – Friday 31 March 2017 HALF-TERM Monday 13 February 2017 – Friday 17 February 2017 Summer Term 2017 Tuesday 18 April 2017 – Friday 30 June 2017 HALF-TERM Monday 29 May 2017 – Friday 2 June 2017 Taking holidays during term time is not acceptable and students should not arrange for events like driving lessons, appointments or part-time work at any time when they may be required to be in classes, tutorials or study time.

Any questions? Visit us



Life at The Bedford Sixth Form As you know, sixth form life is different to life at school. It’s a stepping stone between school and university, as we encourage students to take control of their own learning – and their future – in preparation for university and work life. Here we outline what you need to know in order to support your son or daughter on a day-to-day basis.



School meals

The Bedford Sixth Form is located on Bromham Road, right at the heart of Bedford town centre. There are excellent public transport links, covering our Bedford Borough catchment area and further afield. 16 local towns and villages are served by the main train line into Bedford – and the station is just a ten-minute walk from the Sixth Form. Over 20 bus routes cover Bedford, Luton and the wider local area, terminating just a two-minute walk away.

Aside from external exams, students will have regular assessment through the year, which will be marked against examination board standards and returned with written feedback on strengths and guidance on how to improve. All A-Level students will have a mock week where they will be expected to attend all exams. They will also have individual meetings with subject teachers, at least once per term, to discuss progress in light of the formal assessments, and to focus on how standards can be further raised.

Munch & Mocha is our onsite restaurant. Here students can purchase hot and cold meals, along with snacks and beverages, either to eat in or take away. Packed lunches can be consumed in the students’ area called the Hub.

Please note that there is no parking available for students with cars at The Bedford Sixth Form but space is available for bikes and mopeds.

Enrichment activities

At The Bedford Sixth Form we are offering our full-time students a travel bursary worth £450 a year. This bursary is available if you are...

Sixth form is not just about studying – your son or daughter will have the chance to get involved in lots of events and clubs outside of lessons. The programme changes each year but in the past has included football, dodgeball, photography, debating society and film club. Students will also have the opportunity to be involved with the local community and fundraising. Activities take place at lunchtimes or at the end of the day.

• aged 16-18 on 31 August 2016 • live more than three miles (driving distance) from The Bedford Sixth Form • have a household income of £30,000 or less • are not eligible for financial support for travel from your Local Authority. For the latest information and up to date terms and conditions for 2016/2017 please visit

Guidance on private study Subject teachers will regularly set work for independent private study, which should be completed in free study periods or at home. Students are expected to spend at least one hour extra for every lesson taught. Students are welcome to study at home, or if they wish to stay on site, they can use the study spaces in the Grand Hall and the Learning Resources Centre. We have many facilities on-site for students to access, such as computers and other e-learning resources.


Any questions? Call us on 01234 291291

If your son or daughter received free meals at school, they may be able to continue to receive free meals at The Bedford Sixth Form if they are aged 16-18, and you have a household income of £16,190 or less and are in receipt of specified benefits. Please visit finance for information on our meals bursary.

Your son or daughter may also be interested in becoming a Student Ambassador. Student Ambassadors help out at events and fairs during themed weeks, take tours at Open Days and take part in focus groups to make an impact on how the Sixth Form operates.


Code of conduct

Dress code

The Bedford Sixth Form has a code of conduct which sets standards of behaviour so that all students know what is expected of them, from respect, attendance and punctuality, to safety, consideration of others and hard work. The code of conduct is printed in our student handbook available at www.bedfordsixthform.

There is no uniform for students at The Bedford Sixth Form, however they are expected to be dressed appropriately at all times. Students are asked to not wear anything which may cause offense to others in terms of logos or quotes, or wear anything which exposes too much flesh i.e. the midriff. Inappropriate dress would not be tolerated in the work place and we would like to prepare our students to meet the expectations of prospective employers by adopting this ethos at all times. The same dress code applies when students are out on a work placement.

Parent/tutor communication We are committed to communicating your son or daughter’s progress with you. You will be invited in for a parents’ evening where teachers and personal tutors will be able to discuss your son or daughter’s progress with you. This is both an opportunity to celebrate success and identify any causes for concern. You will also receive a written report from subject teachers.

Additional course costs


If your son or daughter is aged 16-18 our courses are free for them to study. They will, however, be required to buy course related textbooks, pay towards trips and visits and, for a few courses, purchase specialist equipment. Their student ID card can be topped-up with credit to use for the photocopier in the Learning Resources Centre and to buy food and drink in Munch & Mocha.

We have Anti-bullying, Safeguarding, Equality & Diversity and Student Involvement policies in place to ensure that your son or daughter can study with us in a safe and secure environment. Our policies are available to read in full at downloads

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Student Support We have an excellent support network here at The Bedford Sixth Form. Here is an overview of our support staff, what they can help with and how to contact them.

Personal Tutors

Financial Support

Personal Counsellors

All students benefit from their own personal tutor for ongoing one-to-one support, from regular tutorials to help with personal development such as producing an individual learning plan tailored to their future aspirations.

Courses at The Bedford Sixth Form are free to study for 16-18 year olds, however our student finance team are there to provide practical advice on student bursaries, travel costs, higher education funding, grants and much more. We also have a range of financial support packages available to help with essential costs, such as equipment, books or clothing, as well as bursaries for vulnerable students or those in severe financial hardship.

Our counsellors are available to help if personal difficulties are getting in the way of your son or daughter’s studies. We provide quiet spaces where they can talk through their problems with a counsellor, and work towards making them easier to handle.

Subject Teachers For help with subject-related questions and queries, subject teachers will always be on hand to help. If your son or daughter wishes to meet with them outside of lesson times, appointments should be made in advance.

Additional Support team We understand that learning difficulties such as dyslexia bring their own particular demands when studying. This team can help your son or daughter develop specific skills, provide specialist equipment they may need to complete work, make special arrangements for taking exams, and provide support in accessing facilities.


Any questions? Call us on 01234 291291

Contact our Student Finance Advisers on: 01234 291444

Careers Advice Our careers advisers can provide impartial advice and guidance on everything from education, training and work prospects to support with UCAS applications, CVs and interview preparation. Contact our Careers Advisers on: 01234 291444

Contact our Counsellors on: 01234 291444

Other useful contacts Reception 01234 291291 Student Services 01234 291444 or studentservices@ Absence Hotline 01234 291741 Learning Resources Centre 01234 291230 or learningresources@

A-Levels and Level 3 Certificates & Diplomas

To join The Bedford Sixth Form... Changes to A-Levels • At least 5 GCSEs at A*-C including English (please note, a maximum of one Level 2 course at Merit can be counted towards this). • A GCSE at A*-C or a Level 2 Merit grade in your chosen subject if you have studied it previously. • Overall you will need a minimum average point score of 38 points to study A-Levels. Please visit to work out your point score.

You may be aware that A-Levels are currently in the process of reform. Some subjects changed in September 2015 and others are in their second or third stage awaiting government approval. The Bedford Sixth Form is responding to these changes and the implications for examinations.

• Applied Law • Applied Science - Forensic • Art & Design


Qualifications Guide

• Biology • Business • Chemistry • Childcare • Communication & Culture • Computer Science • Dance • Drama • Economics • English Language & Literature

• If you have not already achieved a GCSE in Maths A*-C you will need to study this as part of your subject options.

• English Literature • Film Studies • French • Further Mathematics

• In addition, there may be special entry requirements for certain A-Level subjects, please visit for the most up-to-date information.

• Geography • Government & Politics • Graphics • Health & Social Care • History • Italian • Law • Mathematics • Media • Philosophy • Photography • Physical Education • Physics • Psychology • Sociology • Spanish • Sport • Textiles

UCAS points table The majority of our students move on to university after Sixth Form. Places at university depend on UCAS points being attained. Here is an outline of how many points each grade is worth:

A-Level UCAS points

Extended Diploma UCAS points

A* : 140

D*D*D* : 420

A : 120

D*D*D : 400

B : 100

D*DD : 380

C : 80

DDD : 360

D : 60

DDM : 320

E : 40

DMM : 280 MMM : 240 MMP : 200 MPP : 160 PPP : 120

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A platform for success In 2015, our A-Level students achieved a 98% pass rate. The year before, 92% of our students progressed successfully on to some of the top universities in the country, including Kings College London and the University of York. Here are a few examples:

• Accounting & Finance at University of Birmingham

• Industrial Design & Technology at Loughborough University

• Arabic & Middle Eastern Studies at University of Leeds

• International Relations & Politics at University of Portsmouth

• Archaeology at University of York

• Italian Studies with Chinese at The University of Warwick

• Art History & Film at University of Kent • Biomedical Sciences at Nottingham Trent University • Business & Management at Brunel University London

• Law at University of Essex • Marketing Comms & Advertising at Sheffield Hallam University • Mathematics at Aston University

• Chemical Engineering at The University of Manchester

• Media, Culture & Society at University of Surrey

• Computer Science at University of Hull

• Medieval Studies & Archaeology at University of Wales

• Dental Nursing at The University of Northampton • Diagnostic Radiography at University Campus Suffolk • Economics, Econometrics & Finance at University of York • Education at University of Brighton • English at Queen Mary University of London • Environmental Science at University of Leeds • Fashion Knitwear Design Textiles at Nottingham Trent University • Forensic Science at University of Kent • Geology at University of South Wales • History at University of Lincoln

• Music Promotion at Southampton Solent University • Neuroscience at University of Central Lancashire • Pharmaceutical Science at University of Hertfordshire • Physical Education at University of East Anglia • Physics at University of Leicester • Politics & History at Nottingham Trent University • Social Policy at University of York • Sports Therapy at University College Birmingham • Veterinary Medicine at Royal Veterinary College University of London

The Bedford Sixth Form Bromham Road Bedford MK40 2BS Telephone: 01234 291291

Parents' Guide 2016-17  

The Bedford Sixth Form

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