The Norton Knatchbull School
Diversity Challenge Independence Excellence
The Sixth Form is a vibrant and challenging environment, further enhanced by its coeducational makeup. We value and support all our students as individuals and it is our primary objective to ensure that they become confident learners, realising their full potential and consequently gaining the necessary qualifications for their chosen career. There is an expectation that students will aim high and take advantage of the many and varied opportunities within the school to develop not only their academic knowledge but also to become responsible, resourceful, caring people with the confidence, initiative and maturity to meet the demands of an increasingly complex world.
Teaching and Learning The school offers at least 29 subjects that can be taken at AS or full A level. The majority of students study four AS levels whilst some may take five subjects. Some continue all their subjects through to A2 level, although some will be taking three subjects in year 13. Students in year 11 are canvassed several times and interviewed to ascertain their subject choices and a timetable constructed to meet the needs of all students. The international Baccalaureate is also offered in the Sixth Form and an increasing number of students are attracted to follow the multidisciplinary course with its strong social and European dimension. Students who follow this course are highly regarded by universities. Students from NKS are accepted by Oxford, Cambridge and other top universities each year. However, the NKS also prides itself on accepting students with minimum entry qualifications and allowing them to reach their full potential.
Sixth Form Facilities Sixth Formers have their own area in the newly constructed Fraser Building, comprising a cafe/common room, a private study room and a small ICT suite. In addition, there is a well stocked library which students can access and work in at all times. There is also a careers library with ICT and internet facilities and Sixth Formers can also use the general ICT rooms. A Sixth Form Committee, consisting of members of the L6th and U6th meets regularly with pastoral staff to discuss issues relating to the Sixth Form, from improving the facilities to academic matters.
The Knatchbull Community Sixth form students play an important part in the life of the school. Many of the Sixth Formers are elected prefects and they are given the responsibility of organising younger pupils to take part in the House competitions which operate throughout the year. In doing so, they enhance their own leadership and team building skills and provide a positive role model for the younger students. Every member of the Lower Sixth also acts as a mentor to one of the new year 7 pupils, with regular meetings and fun events, such as quizzes, throughout the year.
Pastoral Support and Guidance Every student is part of a tutor group. The form tutor is responsible for monitoring attendance and the general welfare of the student. However, further help and advice is always available from the Head and Deputy Head of Sixth Form who have offices within the Sixth Form area. A monitoring system, involving student, subject teachers and pastoral staff regularly reviews academic performance. This is often instrumental in helping students when problems occur and also allows recognition of student successes.
â€œThe enthusiastic and challenging teaching enables students to make good progress and achieve well.â€? OFSTED
Contents 1. A Guide to your course options in the Sixth Form 2. The Sixth Form at Norton Knatchbull School 3. A Levels 4. The International Baccalaureate 5. Application Forms
A Guide to Options
A Guide to Your Course Options in The Sixth Form ‘The test of successful education is not the amount of knowledge that pupils take away from school, but their
appetite to know and their capacity to learn.’ (Sir Richard Livingstone, 1941) It is the aim of the Sixth Form at the Norton Knatchbull School that all our students emerge at the end of their studies, not only having met their potential in their chosen subjects, but with the skills and aptitudes that will equip them for higher education or future careers, and the demands of life-long learning.
As you prepare to make your course choices beyond the completion of your GCSEs, you will find that the options open to you are much wider than they were when you were last asked to make options choices. In the on-line Sixth Form Prospectus there are a very wide range of subjects and courses, some of which are at IB level, others at AS level, more at full A level. To help you make your choices, you need to have a good understanding of where you are now and the structure of the next two years of your studies. In discussing your choices you need to consider that there are various types of students making their choices, depending upon their learning pathway. What’s a learning pathway? A learning pathway is an individual‟s path through their studies tailored to fit their needs and their future aspirations. You will discuss your individual learning pathway in a personal tutorial with a senior member of staff before finalising your options. Now that you are beginning to think about your future studies, we would like you to be clear about the aims of the school‟s Sixth Form programme. The course choices are intended to: Improve flexibility Increase student choice Broaden the range of subjects & qualifications offered Tailor options to allow personalised learning Prepare you as fully as possible for higher and further education choices What’s personalised learning? Personalised learning means that the curriculum should offer each student a way of structuring their own studies, building on their individual gifts, talents and interests. It means that each one of you should be able to construct a course pattern specific to your own needs. To help, you will be given advice on possible learning pathways. You should consider the next two years as an opportunity to develop your academic skills and to map out the right qualifications to enable you to undertake future higher education or career choices, but you should also remember that it is an opportunity to develop your talents and interests in a way that allows you the flexibility not to have to narrow your choices too soon. The pattern of courses you choose over the next two years at The Norton Knatchbull School should allow each of you to emerge with an individualised package of qualifications and skills that will prepare you for further study, employment and independence, and will equip you and others to see the full range of your potential. To that end, you can expect that your interviews with senior staff and with tutors in the coming years focus on your independent learning plan. What’s an independent learning plan? A way of designing your own curriculum in consultation with tutors and careers advisor and monitoring your own progress towards your goals. At the outset of your studies you will have ideas about the directions you think that you may want to follow. These may alter as your studies
progress, but at all times you will want to have planned the pattern of courses you take. This may be a route with A levels and AS levels, or it may be the International Baccalaureate. In order to ensure that you are planning wisely, you will expect your tutors and teachers to refer to your ILP at regular intervals.
So, how can you expect the two years to look? The whole point of individual learning pathways, independent learning plans and independent learning is to construct a programme of study where there is no strict formula for every student. To some extent, each of you will follow different routes through your studies. For some of you, four A levels may seem a little daunting; for others, you may well feel that you are ready to begin more than just four A levels, and you may be advised on exactly how to plan your courses to best fit your talents at the right time. There are other students for whom the option of narrowing down their options to just four choices does not allow them the chance to continue with a broad based education and keep open a number of subjects for which they have talent and interest. In that case, you will need to look at what the IB has to offer. However, you need to have in mind that the aim of your course of studies is to equip you with very high quality qualifications and with the sort of enrichment options that make you a desirable candidate for higher education or for employment. As such, you will be advised on how best to ensure that by the end of your course you have the three or four very good A levels or the IB diploma combinations that HE institutions will be looking for, and how best to ensure that as well as this you have an enriched curriculum that makes you stand out from the other candidates.
The Sixth Form
THE SIXTH FORM AT NORTON KNATCHBULL SCHOOL
The vast majority of year 11 students at The Norton Knatchbull will decide to stay in full-time education but for the first time in their lives students now have free choice of which subjects to study and where to study those subjects.
Over 90% of our students every year decide to stay at the Knatchbull for many of the reasons outlined below.
The continuity of subjects and teaching styles. There is a difficult and challenging transition from G.C.S.E. to A-level but this is made considerably easier when both student and teacher know each other.
The range of academic subjects is quite wide and the vast majority of subject combinations can be accommodated.
The average A-level point score has risen consistently over the years and Sixth Formers at the Knatchbull fare as well, if not better than other comparable establishments in Kent. Every year we have students accepted for Oxbridge or Cambridge but we also pride ourselves on taking students with minimum entry qualifications and allowing them to reach their full potential. A selection of destinations for last year's U6th cohort is published at the back of this document.
Our careers guidance is second to none and every student will have a personal adviser to guide him/her through the process of Higher Education or Employment. Our careers library contains a vast array of literature and computer aided advice systems. The personal adviser will also be responsible for preparing a reference for either employment or university entrance.
Every student also has a form tutor who forms part of a pastoral team and he/she is often the first port of call if problems occur. The work of all Sixth Formers is constantly monitored throughout the Sixth Form and, if academic problems occur, it enables the pastoral staff to assist and help the student through those problems.
There is an excellent range of extra-curricular activities based on the House system. All Sixth Formers are encouraged to become involved in an activity which they enjoy. These activities are based around sport, drama, music and literature together with many charitable events.
Sixth Formers also have the opportunity to become House Prefects which is a very important role since many of the extra-curricular events are organised by prefects and they act as an important role model to younger pupils.
The Sixth Form have their own facilities, with a large common room, a working area and access to Computer Network facilities in the Sixth Form area and around the school.
Sixth Formers are also given the privilege of leaving the school premises during private study periods. Both L6th and U6th may sign out after 11.00am every day, providing they have no lessons. To minimise disruption to the rest of the school, students are asked to sign out and leave the premises at lesson changeover times. All Sixth Formers, whatever their timetable, must attend school for morning registration, periods 1/2 and assembly. Signing out is a privilege and students must not engage in part-time jobs or activities, which detract from its main purpose, which is private study.
Although the primary aim for every Sixth Former is to achieve his/her academic potential at A-level it is also very important to become involved in other extra-curricular activities such as Community Service, or the many sporting, musical or artistic ventures on offer. By doing so, he/she will not only enrich the life of the school but develop wider social, creative and organisational skills which are regarded as of major importance by both employers and Higher Education.
In this connection many Sixth Formers take on part-time work at local retail establishments and this part-time employment can give valuable experience as well as greater financial independence. However, students must be aware of the dangers of distorting the balance of their lives by concentrating on short term gains and thereby jeopardising their long term A-level future. This is especially true with the AS Modular system, which means that students have less private study time at school and, therefore, will require more time at home for private study. Sixth Formers face a real challenge of achieving a working balance between the many demands (academic, social, extra-curricular) on time. This balance is important to achieve the self-discipline and independence needed for Higher Education and the world of work.
ADMISSION OF GIRLS TO THE 6TH FORM A single sex school is restricted as to the proportion of the „other‟ sex that can be admitted into a sixth form year group, without statutory notices having to be issued. Currently the maximum is 25% of that year group (DfES Circular 9/99 Section 2, page 5) Accordingly, The Norton Knatchbull School has drawn up the following criteria for admission and also to deal with any over-subscription, should it arise. A.
Admissions Criteria All students, male and female, will have to fulfil the following criteria in order to be considered for the Sixth Form. 1. To have reached the academic standard outlined in the Sixth Form Prospectus. For candidates educated abroad, a similar standard will be required. 2. The school is able to offer a suitable course to the student.
Over-subscription Criteria In the event of places being oversubscribed, once the above prerequisites have been considered, admission will be offered according to the following criteria, in priority order. 1. A sibling is in the school at the time of entry. (This would not include students whose sibling has left but it would include stepbrothers and stepsisters living together). 2. Health reasons. (These would have to be significant and backed up by medical evidence. For example where there are serious mobility problems or the proximity of the William Harvey Hospital is an important factor). 3. Other family association, past or present, with the school (e.g. father attended, parent works in school etc). 4. Non-availability of chosen course at current institution. 5. Proximity of the student‟s home and “ease of access”, by the most direct practicable route.
CAREERS The emphasis is on individual guidance and each Sixth Former will be allocated a personal careers tutor. There is a well stocked Careers Library which is accessible at all times. Here students can access university prospectuses and independent information about different universities as well as about a large number of career options. There is also information about gap years and various aspects of life at university. The computer network also has access to career information through specific programmes and the internet. The school is also supported by the Connexions Service and a drop-in session is available most weeks during the lunch break. Individual appointments can also be made on request. At the end of Year 12, a work shadowing week provides an excellent opportunity for the students to take up vocational placements in industry, commerce etc. which help them to focus on specific university courses and careers. The Sixth Form PSHCE programme also looks closely at life after school, with particular emphasis on university and the world of work. A number of visiting speakers will address the Sixth Form on topics such as interviews, applying to university and taking a gap year. Mrs P. Wheatley Head of Careers COMMUNITY SERVICE Members of the Sixth Form have the opportunity to take part in a Voluntary Service programme. This will be organised to suit individual interests and preferences, and can take place during private study time or possibly as an alternative to Games. During the year 2006/7 a number of the L6th and some U6th students took part in projects such as visiting the elderly, assisting the classroom teacher in primary or special schools, sports coaching, hospital visiting, charity shop work, working with disabled people and various conservation projects. Community Service also forms part of the I.B. CAS programme. The aim of the programme is to extend the students' interests and responsibilities, develop greater selfconfidence and feelings of self-worth. It also provides valuable feedback for any future reference for employment or Higher Education. DRESS CODE A dress code for the Sixth Form has been accepted and supported by the Governors, Parents, Staff and the Sixth Form, itself for a long period of time. The dress code of male students is essentially the kind of smart dress that one would find in the business world. It is recognised that the dress code for girls should be less rigid than for boys in line with normal practice in the commercial world. What follows are guidelines to help female students select appropriate wear.
Dark trousers or skirt, blouse or sweater (without obvious logos). Office style jacket if worn. Unobtrusive jewellery and make up are acceptable. Unusual hairstyles or colourings are not acceptable.
The following would be unacceptable: any kind of Denim jeans or top, crop tops or shorts, trainers or stiletto heels; visible body piercing (excluding earrings).
To aid identification a badge or pin will be worn by female members of the Sixth Form in lieu of a Sixth Form tie.
Boysâ€™ Students are expected to dress smartly in the Sixth Form and the basic dress code is dark shoes (not trainers), dark suit or blazer style jacket and trousers together with a light coloured shirt and Sixth Form tie. Jewellery should be kept to a minimum; a single ear stud is permitted for Sixth Formers. All boys in the Sixth Form should be clean-shaven and unusual hair styles or colourings are not permitted. (This policy operates throughout the School.) The pastoral team reserve the right to discuss the suitability of any studentâ€&#x;s appearance notwithstanding the guidelines above. ENTRY CRITERIA FOR SEPTEMBER 2009 ENTRY ONWARDS All students who wish to stay in the Sixth Form of The Norton Knatchbull School will be expected to reach a reasonable level of attainment at GCSE. i. The total score of the best eight full GCSEs or equivalent should be at least 344: A* A B C D E F G
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ii. In addition to this points score, students will be expected to gain at least a grade B equivalent in the subject that they wish to study (grade A in Maths GCSE if they wish to study A level or IB Higher Maths). Where there is no equivalent GCSE subject, the entry requirements are as outlined in the prospectus. iii. All students, irrespective of the course(s) they wish to study, should have attained at least a GCSE C grades in Mathematics and English, or equivalent. iv. Students who have followed other courses such as GNVQ will be considered on an individual basis, but must have gained at least a B grade equivalent in four different subjects. v. Students who do not gain the points score required may still have their application considered if there are mitigating circumstances. In accepting a place in The Norton Knatchbull School Sixth Form, all students will be bound by a contract that encompasses reasonable behaviour, attendance, punctuality, coursework and dress in the Sixth Form. Further information on how the Sixth Form operates will be available to all Sixth Form students at the start of Year 12. EXAMINATION ENTRANCE POLICY Any student who has regularly attended lessons and met the criteria set out by the various departments throughout the course with respect to coursework, projects and internal examinations has the right to be entered for the AS, A2 and IB examinations. The entries are always made after students and parents have had the
opportunity for consultation, however, the final decision on whether an entry is made rests with the subject tutor, Head of Sixth Form, and ultimately the Headmaster. The school will fund these entries. (Please note that The Norton Knatchbull School does not enter unsuitable candidates, even if they express a willingness to pay for entry). Any student who is retaking an exam will be required to pay for that unit. Payment for retaking exams must meet the deadlines given to students every year by the Examinations Secretary, otherwise entry cannot be guaranteed. Progression into the U6th year on any course is conditional on meeting the criteria set out by the individual departments. Any student who achieved a U grade in the AS exam would not continue into the A2 section of the A-level course, unless there are extenuating circumstances. All U6th students must have a timetable comprising at least 3 A2 subjects or 2 A2 subjects and an AS subject. General Studies is additional to this loading. G.C.S.E. RESITS Resit opportunities are usually available with limited teaching support for G.C.S.E. English and Mathematics, which must be regarded as essential qualifications. Pupils will be expected to pay for the cost of the exams, and they will be notified about the deadlines and costs at the appropriate time. LINKS WITH OTHER EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS IN ASHFORD For a number of years the Sixth Form Curriculum of the NKS and the Highworth School have been substantially the same, operating on a similar timetable. This enables students from either school to follow a course from the other establishment. This is usually helpful when a student cannot fit a particular combination of subjects together at any one institution. NKS students can only follow one A-level subject at the Highworth School. The Highworth School also offers subjects which are not currently available at the Knatchbull, such as D & T (Graphics). It will not be possible to say whether room will available for any NKS student to study any given subject at Highworth until the total numbers studying the various subjects are known in September. All students wishing to follow a subject at Highworth must also meet the subject criteria as set out by the departments at Highworth. Common blocks have also been agreed with The Towers allowing one of their teachers to teach Law at NKS. THE PREFECT SYSTEM Prefects are elected annually from within the five L6th House groups and are allocated to each of the House forms in years 7 - 11. Only members of the L6th and staff are eligible to vote. The most suitable candidate in each house is appointed House Captain. The role of the prefects is seen primarily as a positive one, since it is their task to organise the Houses for the many house events and competitions that occur throughout the year. Prefects also have authority in the school as a whole and often assist staff at parents' evenings and other functions. As well as elected prefects there are also a large number of designated prefects who have roles within certain areas such as the library, careers library, languages and the Computer area. Many Sixth Formers will eventually be placed in positions of responsibility in industry and commerce which require key skills such as 'managing people', leading teams and organising events. Many prefects will develop these skills through the day to day running of their jobs. The School Captain and Deputy School Captain will be drawn from the House Captains and their deputies through an interview process with the Headmaster and the Sixth Form pastoral team.
SIXTH FORM CODE OF WORKING The following points are felt to be essential for academic success in the Sixth Form:
All homework and/or coursework should meet the agreed deadlines. No lessons should be missed without a valid reason The learning process should not be disrupted by any student. All students should attend school, unless there is a valid reason All students should behave in a mature, orderly manner in the Sixth Form areas and around the school.
Some students in the Sixth Form will occasionally transgress the normal school rules in much the same way as younger students e.g. failing to register on time, wearing inappropriate dress, missing lessons, failure to do homework etc. However, not all the sanctions employed for younger students are always appropriate to the Sixth Form, where we aim to treat students in an adult and businesslike manner. The sanction that is used most frequently, though not exclusively, in the Sixth Form is the removal of the signing out privilege. When the offence is serious or very persistent, more serious action will take place. All details and letters are kept on file, and may be referred to in constructing any future reference for work or higher education. There will normally be a graduated response, which relates to the frequency and nature of the offence. At any appropriate stage parents may be contacted by letter and/or phone and interviews arranged to discuss the matter. Should problems continue the student would eventually incur a more serious range of sanctions, which could include exclusion. SIXTH FORM ENRICHMENT ACTIVITIES At Norton Knatchbull we believe in „A healthy body in a healthy mind‟ and so a wide range of sporting activities are on offer on Wednesday afternoons. These include the usual team sports of football, hockey, and cricket in due season, together with basketball, weight training and table tennis, badminton and squash, or swimming and tennis (in the summer term). There are also opportunities for other, more individual pursuits such as cycling, golf, or martial arts. We also recognise that sport does not suit everyone. Some of the Sixth Form choose to do other extracurricular enrichment activities such as art or music. Voluntary work gives students an opportunity to offer their help to the wider community while at the same time providing a worthwhile addition to their Curriculum Vitae and university application. A wide range of Community Service placement is available, both on Wednesday afternoons and at other times during the week. TUTOR GROUPS When possible groups in Year 12 will be a continuation of the House System, with years 12 and 13 in mixed forms. Friendship groups are taken into account during this process. All members of the Sixth Form, (except where they have permission to sign out), are required to register at 8.50 a.m. and stay on site until 11.00a.m., and to attend assemblies. Students who are late must sign the Form's late book since it is vital that the Form Tutor has complete knowledge of their whereabouts. Any student who is consistently late, without a good reason, will face a number of sanctions which may ultimately lead to dismissal from the Sixth Form. Students who stay on site in the afternoon but do not have a scheduled lesson must sign the signing-in book for fire safety regulations. The Form tutor is responsible for monitoring attendance and general welfare, for co-ordinating Report Profiles and assisting in the preparation of the U.C.A.S. reference. The tutor also has an important role in the delivery of
P.S.H.C.E. which is intended to broaden a student's outlook in life, to increase the range of organisation and study skills, and to help prepare him/her for future careers and higher education.
‘A’ LEVELS The modern A-level is now composed of two elements. The advanced subsidiary (AS) which now comprises two units of work and is normally examined at the end of the L6th year, followed by the A2 course, which also has two units, which are then examined at the end of the U6th year. AS and A2 courses are normally graded A to E with a U meaning, unclassified or fail. The AS can either be a stand alone exam or the results can be added to the A2 courses to give a final A-level grade. Each unit is separately graded and certificated and there are two opportunities, in January and June of any one year, to retake individual modules to raise the overall score and grade achieved at AS or A2 level. Units can be resat more than once. Students will pay all resit fees. There are four exam boards whose syllabi are used throughout the various A-levels on offer. These are: EDEXCEL, OCR, AQA, WEJC All the A-levels that the school are presently offering are listed in the prospectus. The International Baccalaureate Diploma, a well balanced and highly regarded programme that leads to a qualification which is nationally and internationally recognised for entry to university, is also available as an alternative to „A‟ level, further details of which are published in this prospectus. Which subjects and how many? Students will have been accustomed to having some option choices during Years 10 and 11 at the NKS, but in the Sixth Form each student is allowed a free choice of subjects which would normally include one AS qualification from each of the four timetabled blocks. Before making such a choice the students should have; a commitment to work to the standard expected in any particular subject a reasonable idea of where the A-level fits into future career plans confirmation from the respective Year 11 subject tutor that the student has the ability and the work ethic to cope with the demands of the course. It is expected that the typical student who, for example, may have 5As and 4Bs at G.C.S.E. should be following a four subject course during the first year. At the end of the first year students have the choice of dropping an A level subject and concentrating on the remaining three A2 subjects. Some high achieving students, for example, those gaining 5 or more A* grades at G.C.S.E. may also wish to take an additional „A‟ level, therefore achieving either 4 or 5 A-levels at the end of the Sixth Form. Subjects available at AS/A2 in the Sixth Form You will normally be required to start four AS courses in September. The Sixth Form timetable consists of four main columns containing the A-level subjects which are taught on eight periods a week. Some of these subjects will appear more than once depending on the demand and the staffing available. The fifth column will contain subjects which will operate on less than eight periods a week. The subjects below are those we plan to offer in September, 2009. However problems with staffing, timetable and student numbers may necessitate some late changes. Once everyone in year 11 has returned their choices/application form the school will construct the columns endeavouring to satisfy as many subject combinations as possible. Inevitably there may be some combinations that are not possible. However, alternative options may include studying an A-level at Highworth.
The subjects are set out below in columns to save space and do not represent the final columns which will form the timetable. In this initial trawl, simply choose the four or five AS subjects that you wish to study. Art 2D Art 3D Biology Business Studies Chemistry Computing Design and Technology Drama and Theatre Studies Economics English Language and Literature English Literature Film Studies Food Technology French Geography German
Graphics (NKS/Highworth)* Government and Politics History I.C.T. Mathematics Further Mathematics Music Music Technology (Highworth) Photography Physics Psychology Religious Studies Sociology Spanish Sports Studies
GCSE Exams Applied French Italian Japanese
(* courses at Highworth and other institutions are subject to availability, numbers and entrance criteria) No decisions are made by Highworth on NKS applications until the beginning of the September term i.e. when their own pupil numbers and choices are known. It is, therefore, important to put possible alternative subjects on the application form. It is emphasised that the choice of subjects which you make may be changed by you at any time up to the start of the September term (e.g. in light of examination results). However your choices would have to fit in with the timetabled columns that will have been finalised around Spring, 2010. Your choices are also subject to the approval of the Heads of Department who will base that decision on whether you meet the subject entrance criteria and have an appropriate work ethic. Applications should be made using the online application by Friday 22nd February 2010
The International Baccalaureate – Education for Life In recent years the number of schools teaching the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) in the UK has more than doubled and it seems that the momentum is gathering pace. Why should you consider studying the IBDP? Ms Daniels, a former Head of Art offers this for you: To meet people who have done the IB course is to meet people who have larger minds and wider views, about themselves and the world at large. You can tell immediately because you find a greater maturity and a greater awareness. You find a mind that is lively and always open to a challenge, a mind which knows so much more than narrow subject areas, a mind that enjoys „knowing‟. To be able to give such a spring board to students is to give them a lifelong gift of confidence, flexibility and enthusiasm for knowledge, for culture and real awareness of what ever society they live in. They become real „citizens‟ in the widest sense of the word. If education is about anything it is about knowing you always need to know more and that the search will be lifelong, and a thing needing energy, patience and the promise of more to come, always more. The decision to start offering the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) at The Norton Knatchbull School as an alternative to the traditional „A‟ level programme was taken when we drew up the bid for Language College Status back in 2003. The idea of a compulsory language as part of a student‟s 6th Form studies was an obvious attraction. The numbers studying languages nationally have been falling, only 30% of students gained an A*-C grade this year. The fact that NKS had bucked that particular trend was one of the reasons why we chose Language College status. Possessing language skills will not only help you get to the University of your choice, it may also enable you to secure a job ahead of competitors who do not have these skills. The inclusion of a language, however, is only part of the attraction of the IBDP. We are convinced that the IBDP will provide students with a much broader and more coherent alternative to the traditional „A‟ level curriculum. IB students cannot really make a mistake – they‟re numerate, literate, have a language, a humanity and a science. The IB prepares a student‟s way into university, for success once he/she is there and for life! The IBDP provides a highly marketable qualification, particularly important with increased globalisation. The educational philosophy that underpins the programme aims to develop the individual talents of students and to encourage them to apply what they learn in the classroom to real world issues and problems. As you might expect, wherever possible, subjects are taught from an international perspective. The IBDP was originally designed to cater for the needs of globally mobile students in international schools. It is a compromise for instance between the specialisation of „A‟ levels and the breadth of the French Baccalauréat. As such it shows no bias towards any particular educational system. The International Baccalaureate Organisation Mission Statement: (November 2002): The International Baccalaureate Organisation aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end the IBO works with schools, governments and international organisations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment. These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right. The Diploma programme is a demanding pre-university course but it should not be seen as a course for the top few students. It is designed for motivated, well-organised students of wider ability; indeed hard-working students who might gain 3 Cs and/or Ds at „A‟ level may well do better with the IB, less motivated students may well not, so it probably is not a programme for students who lack sufficient drive!
The aims of the International Baccalaureate Programme, in the words of the IBO‟s first director general, Alec Peterson, are to develop to their fullest potential the powers of each individual to understand, to modify and to enjoy his or her environment, both inner and outer, in its physical, social, moral, aesthetic and spiritual aspects. It is not the acquisition of general knowledge, but a development of the general powers of the mind to operate in a variety of ways of thinking. International perspectives will therefore be regularly brought to the forefront of everyday school life – in assemblies, classrooms, laboratories, workshops etc. International and intercultural issues linked to subjects will be discussed. In this way students will see that to be different, to look different, to think differently and to live differently are not wrong. Diversity needs to be celebrated and respected, not feared; bias and opinions will be seen as being very different from fact! The Diploma Programme is based on 3 fundamental principles: The need for a broad general education, establishing the basic knowledge and critical thinking skills necessary for further study. The importance of developing international understanding and citizenship for a more peaceful, productive future. The need for flexibility of choice among the subjects to be studied, within a balanced framework, so that the students’ options could correspond as far as possible to their particular interests and capacities. The aims of the Diploma Programme are to:
Provide an internationally accepted qualification for entry into higher education. Promote international understanding. Educate the whole person, emphasizing intellectual, personal, emotional and social growth. Develop inquiry and thinking skills, and the capacity to reflect upon and to evaluate actions critically.
THE IB CURRICULUM AT NKS Group 1: (Language A1): English or a self-taught language Group 2: (Language B): French, German, Spanish (Language Ab initio): Japanese and Italian
Group 3: Individuals and Societies: Economics, Geography, History, Psychology, Environmental Systems and Societies and Philosophy
Group 4: Experimental Sciences: Biology, Chemistry, Physics And Environmental Systems and Societies
Group 5: Mathematics: Mathematics and Mathematical Studies
Group 6: The Arts/Electives: Art, Music, Theatre Studies or a second subject from either Groups 2, 3, 4 or Computer Science/ITGS
Students must choose one subject from each of the six academic areas, normally three at higher level (maximum of four) and three at standard level. The ab initio language, Environmental Systems and Societies and Mathematical Studies can only be taken at standard level. Higher level courses will represent 240 teaching hours and requires a greater depth of study across a broader range of content in the subject. Standard level courses require 150 hours and provide breadth of study across the whole Diploma Programme. Subjects that students intend reading at university should be studied at Higher level. In addition, students follow a core which is intended to develop global citizenship in the 21st century. It comprises:
The Extended Essay – a 4000 word in-depth study chosen by the student. CAS – Creativity, Action and Service. Theory of Knowledge.
WHAT UNIVERSITIES THINK? „Universities value the work ethos encouraged by the IB. The IB is good preparation for university and working life!‟ „Most university admission teachers know the IB well and value it highly because it develops: • A capacity for autonomous learning: research skills; time management (e.g. in Extended Essay); • Self-confidence and readiness to take risks (e.g. through CAS); • Critical-thinking and awareness of connections (e.g. through TOK); • Teamwork (e.g. through CAS); • A breadth of knowledge (through maintenance with wide range of fields); • Internationalism (languages and curricular emphasis). „Statistics suggest that 10% more Oxbridge places are offered to IB students than A2 students. Although the IB-based offers can appear to be high, there is flexibility which is not often found with „A‟ level offers‟. „For medicine, IB students are more likely to be called for interview. Legal and medical faculties value the varied knowledge of IB students‟. „The IB stretches the brightest and rewards the hard-working student‟. „The aim is to produce well-rounded youngsters who want to and are able to operate internationally. IB students have a wider perspective. The coherent, balanced programme produces interesting students!‟ „IB students have markedly superior skills in research, critical thinking and decision making – they are good independent learners!‟
Assessment Each examined subject is graded by external examiners on a scale of 1 (the lowest) to 7 (the highest). To be eligible for the IB Diploma, students must also: i. ii. iii.
Submit an Extended Essay gaining at least a grade D. Complete satisfactorily the Theory of Knowledge (TOK) course, again with at least a grade D. Participate in the extra-curricular Creativity, Action and Service Programme(CAS).
There is a combined total of 3 bonus marks available for the TOK and Extended Essay giving a total mark of 45 for the Diploma. Poor quality work in these areas can lead to a fail. Any student who does not satisfy the requirements of the CAS Programme will not be awarded the Diploma. Otherwise a total of at least 24 points will normally give students the IB Diploma. Even if a full diploma is not awarded, a student can still gain certificates and UCAS points in any of the subjects he/she studies and these will be accepted by universities. A retake is also possible either in November or May. Further details are available on the IBOâ€&#x;s website â€“ www.ibo.org or Mr Baker.
THE IB LEARNER PROFILE The aim of all IB programmes is to develop internationally minded people who, recognising their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world. IB learners strive to be: Inquirers
They develop their natural curiosity. They acquire the skills necessary to conduct inquiry and research and show independence in learning. They actively enjoy learning and this love of learning will be sustained throughout their lives.
They explore concepts, ideas and issues that have local and global significance. In so doing, they acquire in-depth knowledge and develop understanding across a broad and balanced range of disciplines.
They exercise initiative in applying thinking skills critically and creatively to recognise and approach complex problems, and make reasoned, ethical decisions.
They understand and express ideas and information confidently and creatively in more than one language and in a variety of modes of communication. They work effectively and willingly in collaboration with others.
They act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness, justice and respect for the dignity of the individual, groups and communities. They take responsibility for their own actions and the consequences that accompany them.
They understand and appreciate their own cultures and personal histories, and are open to the perspectives, values and traditions of other individuals and communities. They are accustomed to seeking and evaluating a range of points of view, and are willing to grow form the experience.
They show empathy, compassion and respect towards the needs and feelings of others. They have a personal commitment to service, and act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment.
They approach unfamiliar situations and uncertainty with courage and forethought, and have the independence of spirit to explore new roles, ideas and strategies. They are brave and articulate in defending their beliefs.
They understand the importance of intellectual, physical and emotional balance to achieve personal well-being for themselves and others.
They give thoughtful consideration to their own learning and experience. They are able to assess and understand their strengths and limitations in order to support their learning and personal development
Theory of Knowledge Aims The main aim of the Theory of Knowledge (TOK) programme is to cause students to think critically about the nature of knowledge. The course refers to Ways of Knowing and Areas of Knowledge. Ways of Knowing include:
Deductive logic (arguing logically from certain premises, as in a syllogism) Inductive logic (trying to derive generalisations and laws from a large number of observed examples, as in the scientific method) Emotion, as in empathy Faith Language Creativity
Areas of Knowledge include: Natural Science Mathematics The alleged Human Sciences, such as Psychology, Economics and Sociology History The Arts Ethics All the Ways of Knowing may supply us with valuable insights, but many experts would claim that the only really reliable knowledge comes from logic and mathematics. After following the TOK course, the student should have an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the various Ways of Knowing and Areas of Knowledge, and be able to: Develop intellectual honesty and the ability to evaluate beliefs and knowledge claims Become aware of the personal, ideological and cultural factors which help to determine the knowledge claims of ourselves and others Objectives Candidates should be able to:
Demonstrate an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the various ways of knowing, and of the methods used in the different areas of knowledge Demonstrate a capacity to apply critical judgements Make connections between ways of knowing and areas of knowledge Identify values underlying judgements and knowledge claims which affect local and global issues Formulate and communicate ideas in precise language
Scepticism Students should display a balanced scepticism, being aware that:
Things are not always what they seem Certainty is very hard to come by, except perhaps in logic and mathematics Some positions are more defensible than others, even if they are not certain
The student should be able to say: I have considered the issues, and can justify what I believe to be the most reasonable position Assessment overview for Theory of Knowledge TOK Assessment Internal component (33%) External component (67%)
One 10 minute presentation, possibly done in small groups, followed by a class discussion. One essay, which is to be written in a studentâ€&#x;s own time, on a list of 10 titles known beforehand.
CREATIVITY/ACTION/SERVICE â€“ (CAS) WHAT IS CAS? CAS is an integrated programme made up of THREE elements. These are designed to help you develop as a caring and socially-responsible person. They should also help you to develop skills, confidence and feelings of self-worth. It is also really important that CAS is FUN! The THREE elements are: CREATIVITY This is designed to cover a wide range of the arts and other activities outside of the normal school curriculum. Examples could include dance, writing, music, art, design or drama e.g. a pantomime. Wherever possible, IB students should be involved in group activities and aim to develop new skills. ACTION This element can include expeditions (e.g. the Duke of Edinburgh Award expedition), individual and team sports or other physical activities outside the normal school curriculum. Examples could include teaching disabled children to swim, joining a running club, learning a new sport or activity such as sailing or diving or organising and taking part in a sponsored walk to raise money for a chosen charity. As above, wherever possible, IB students should be involved in group activities and aim to develop new skills. SERVICE This involves doing something to help others, in the school, in the local community or nationally/internationally. IB students are particularly encouraged to do things with the people they are helping, rather than just doing things for others. Examples could include organising a camping expedition for younger pupils, taking children from a special school on an outing, organising carol singing, setting up a recycling scheme in school, organising a litter clearing project in your neighbourhood or contributing to the school newspaper. NB: It is very likely that some or all of the activities you choose to do will cover more than one of the CAS elements. Thus, teaching disabled children to swim would be both action and service.
PHILOSOPHY OF CREATIVITY, ACTION, SERVICE Counterbalance to academic selfabsorption
Sharing energies and talents
Development of awareness, concern for and ability to work with others
Promotion of more informed and understanding attitudes
Education of the whole person
Service to the community as a complement to intellectual development in the academic curriculum
Education beyond the classroom and examination hall
Philosophy of CAS Development of attitudes and values which transcend race, religion, gender and politics
Establishment of links with local, national and international communities
Promotion of international understanding
Challenge to the student
Encouragement of new skills and interests
Encouragement of a sense of responsibility to all
Development of a spirit of discovery and self-reliance
Final evaluation of students’ work The IBO outlines very specific criteria by which to evaluate students: Personal achievement The student progressed in the new role and learned from the experience; learned to meet challenges while showing increased awareness of personal limitations; and helped to solve community problems. Personal skills The student demonstrated the ability to think creatively; to research community needs; to manage resources; to plan and organise and to identify a plan‟s successes and failures. Personal qualities The student participated regularly, punctually, responsibly and reliably; and the student demonstrated commitment, initiative, perseverance, self-confidence and a degree of humility. Interpersonal qualities The student demonstrated collaboration and adaptability as well as respect, empathy, and a sense of justice and fair play. Awareness of global issues Developed an appreciation of how humanitarian and environmental concerns can be addressed through action from local, national and international perspectives. Further details are available from Mrs Farrant.
Agreement for Students wishing to join the NKS Sixth Form September 2010 (AS/A2) Name:……………………………………………………………………. (Form)……………………... The school is eager to help your son/daughter to make a success of his/her time in the NKS Sixth Form. It is a time of great change, where students choose to enter the Sixth Form on a voluntary basis, to study subjects that appeal to them and will lead them into higher education and/or an interesting career. It is our intention that the relationship between students and teachers will change over time to one of a more mature nature, where the interaction is less formal and the teacher becomes a guide and facilitator. In joining the Sixth Form, you will be required to sign the following agreement as evidence of your willingness to make the most of the opportunities that the Sixth Form affords. You are also making a commitment to work to your full potential, and to follow the normal school rules as set out in the school literature and the Sixth Form prospectus. Please place a subject choice in the first four boxes. Subject 1
GCSE/Language Applied French Italian Japanese
If you are also interested in receiving information about alternative courses which are being made available through linking with South Kent College and The Towers School. Please enter the specific courses in the columns below.
I wish to apply for admission to the Sixth Form of The Norton Knatchbull School. I agree to return to school after the G.C.S.E. exams and work experience to attend the induction course in July 2010. Signed…………………………………………………………………………………………...(student) Guardian/Parental endorsement……………………………………………….Date…………………….
PLEASE WOULD STUDENTS FROM SCHOOLS OTHER THAN NORTON KNATCHBULL ALSO COMPLETE THE REVERSE OF THIS PAGE
Name……………………………………………………………… Date of Birth ……………………... Name of Parents/Guardians (for correspondence)…………………………………………………… Address………………………………………………………………………………………………....... …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Telephone Number: ……………………………………………………………………………………... Present School and Address ……………………………………………………………………………. …………………………………………………………………………………………………………... …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Name of Year Head……………………………………………Telephone Number……………………. The application form should be returned to a box in reception or via your form tutor to Mr. M. Perrian, Head of Sixth Form by Friday 22nd February 2010. External students should return the form by post to: Mr. M. Perrian, Head of Sixth Form, The Norton Knatchbull School, Hythe Road, Ashford, Kent. TN24 0QJ. Telephone Number 01233 620045.
Agreement for Year 12 Students wishing to join the NKS Sixth Form September 2009 to study the International Baccalaureate Diploma Name:……………………………………………………………………... (Form)……………… The school is eager to help your son/daughter to make a success of his/her time in the NKS Sixth Form. It is a time of great change, where students choose to enter the Sixth Form on a voluntary basis, to study subjects that appeal to them and will lead them into higher education and/or an interesting career. It is our intention that the relationship between students and teachers will change over time to one of a more mature nature, where the interaction is less formal and the teacher becomes a guide and facilitator. In joining the Sixth Form, you will be required to sign the following agreement as evidence of your willingness to make the most of the opportunities that the Sixth Form affords. You are also making a commitment to work to your full potential, and to follow the normal school rules as set out in the school literature and the Sixth Form prospectus. Group
Please Tick Chosen Subject
English Self-taught Language 2. Language B French German OR Spanish Japanese 2. Language B Italian Ab initio Japanese 3.Individuals Economics and Societies Geography History Psychology Environmental Systems and Socities 4. Experimental Biology Science Chemistry Physics Environmental Systems and Societies 5. Mathematics Mathematics Mathematical Studies 6. Arts and Art Electives Drama Music Computer Science or a second subject from groups 2, 3 or 4)
Desired Level: Higher/Standard Please indicate
1. Language A
Reserve Choice - Just in case! Not necessary
Standard only Standard only
Not necessary Not necessary
Please include a reserve choice of subject, just in case we have any timetabling problems, particularly for Group 6. I wish to apply for admission to the Sixth Form of the Norton Knatchbull School. I agree to return to school after the G.C.S.E. exams and work experience to attend the induction course from June 29th to July 1st 2009. Signed…………………………………………………….(student) Guardian/Parental endorsement………………………………………Date……………………. PLEASE WOULD STUDENTS FROM SCHOOLS OTHER THAN NORTON KNATCHBULL ALSO COMPLETE THE REVERSE OF THIS PAGE
Name……………………………………………………… Date of Birth ……………………...... Gender……………………………………………………………………………….(Male/Female) Name of Parents/Guardians (for correspondence)………………………………………………… Address…………………………………………………………………………………………….. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………... Telephone Number: ……………………………………………………………………………….. Present School and Address ……………………………………………………………………….. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………... …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. Name of Year Head……………………………………………Telephone Number……………… The application form should be returned to a box in reception or via your form tutor to Mr. M. Perrian, Head of Sixth Form by Friday 22nd February 2010. External students should return the form by post to: Mr. M. Perrian, Head of Sixth Form, The Norton Knatchbull School, Hythe Road, Ashford, Kent. TN24 0QJ. Telephone Number 01233 62004
“I look back to my days at the Norton Knatchbull as one of the defining points in my life. It is an educational environment that not only produces academic excellence, but also importantly allows the growth of the individual.”
“The Sixth Form encourages students to develop not only academically but also as people. I believe that the excellent teaching and hardworking environment helped me to realise my ambition to study medicine at university.” “Originally being one of a very small number of girls in the Sixth Form, the prospect of studying at the Norton Knatchbull was a very daunting experience; however the school is really supportive and ensures that you settle in properly. There are loads of worthwhile opportunities to get involved and I have made many great friends during my time here.”