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Sixth Form Information

Welcome to the Sixth Form at Princess Helena College

Academics At Princess Helena College we want you to become increasingly focused, determined and self-reliant, setting yourself high expectations and ambitions in order to achieve your best in all aspects of life. Academic achievement is a priority for everyone and hard work is the

Choosing the right Sixth Form is an exciting decision to make and we hope that this booklet helps to make this choice a little easier. At Princess Helena College Sixth Form we want to help you achieve your very best exam results and to guide you to choose the right course for your future. We also want you to really enjoy Sixth Form life and to leave school with the skills and the personal qualities to tackle life, university and the world of work. The Sixth Form is based at Dower House where all girls can study and socialise. A variety of fun social events, both formal and informal, take place at Dower throughout the year; culminating in the Sixth Form ball at the end of the summer term. Some lessons and tutorials also take place in Dower, and all Sixth Form boarders have their own study bedrooms; day girls also have private study rooms. We are a vibrant Sixth Form where you will be encouraged to work hard and take responsibility. The atmosphere is very friendly and supportive and, in no time at all, you will settle in and focus on your studies, as well as participate in various extra-curricular activities and develop life-long friendships.

key to success, but we realise that you will only achieve your maximum potential with the help and guidance of our highly knowledgeable and experienced Sixth Form team. The Head of Sixth Form, form tutors and your Academic Mentor will offer you advice on all aspects of student life. Study skills training and careers advice are major facets of the highly regarded tutoring system. Girls at PHC Sixth Form normally study four AS levels in the first year, followed by three A2 subjects in the second. There are approximately 7 lessons per week for each A or AS Level subject; our class sizes are enviably small, with many subjects taught in groups of no more than six pupils. The “tutorial” nature of these classes ensures that you can receive individual attention and can contribute meaningfully to the class. There are also opportunities for 1 to 1 teaching in certain subjects.

What’s great is that you can really

Outside the classroom, you should be spending at least 6 or 7 hours of

be yourself here. Everyone can

Reading beyond the curriculum, working and thinking independently

join in with all the clubs and the

for university and life beyond.

teachers always reward you if you

A Level Results

private study on each A level subject per week (about 3 hours a day). and being self-disciplined are key Sixth Form attributes - preparing you

Our class discussions are a

put the effort in.







great way of exploring the

A* - A






Year 12 pupil

A* - B






subjects and I always feel my

A* - C






A* - E






ideas and opinions are valued. Year 13 pupil

Personal Enrichment Programme

Curriculum Choices It is important for you to select A level choices carefully, basing decisions on

„„ Art & Design

knowledge of your own abilities, interests, preferred learning styles and aspirations.

„„ Biology

We provide support in the subject selection procedure and offer a wide range of subjects to accommodate different interests and tastes and we are willing to offer

„„ Chemistry

new subjects if there is sufficient demand. By our very nature, we are able to

„„ Dance

accommodate most combinations of subjects, however, as with all Sixth Forms, not every combination of subjects may be possible.

„„ Drama & Theatre Studies

In order to stand out from the crowd in today’s world you need more than a good set of academic results. Universities and employers are attaching more and more value to life skills. These include being able to communicate effectively, to work in teams, to think independently, to show initiative, to lead and to solve problems. Our enrichment programme has been designed specifically to provide you with activities, events, lectures and experiences that will help you cultivate these valuable skills.

„„ Economics For more details about these subject choices see our separate booklet or the website.

„„ English Literature „„ French

Additional subjects that are also offered and could be added to your timetable, include the Level 3 Extended Project Qualification, and Speech & Drama (both of which can now go towards your UCAS point score) or a GCSE such as Drama or Dance (timetable permitting). Private music tuition is also available.

„„ Geography „„ German „„ History

Academic Mentors

„„ ICT

Every girl at PHC Sixth Form has her own Academic Mentor who she meets each week. Your Academic Mentor oversees your study programme and you will meet with him or her regularly, on an individual basis, to review your academic work and extra-curricular activities, as well as discussing your higher education aspirations. The Academic Mentor will also liaise with parents and other members of staff to ensure girls fulfil their potential.

„„ Media Studies

Girls highly value the support and advice given to them by their Academic Mentor; this is a very important aspect of life in the Sixth Form.

„„ Psychology

The enrichment programme is divided into six strands: „„ Careers and university preparation - including alternative pathways „„ Curriculum linked activities and lecture programme „„ Life Skills „„ Leadership and teamwork development opportunities „„ Social and cultural events and experiences. „„ Service and volunteering

„„ Maths & Further Maths

„„ Music


„„ Photography „„ Physical Education „„ Physics

„„ Religious Studies


„„ Spanish

I am so grateful to my Academic Mentor for her encouragement and support. Year 13 pupil

Some of our activities are run in conjunction with local boys and co-ed schools, for example, Question Time debates, the Model United Nations, language debates and the Duke of Edinburgh Award programme. There are also opportunities to socialise with events that are organised by the staff and students, as well as more formal events such as our fantastic Summer Ball.

I really enjoy being Head of House. It’s a challenge to

get everyone motivated and

organised at times but it’s also lots of fun and has helped to build my confidence. Year 12 pupil

Leadership Opportunities As a member of the Sixth Form you will have a pivotal role within the school. All Sixth Formers will have the chance to take responsibility and to motivate, persuade and lead others. You will be expected to lead by example and to work with energy, enthusiasm, empathy, initiative and a strong sense of reliability. In the Spring Term of Year 12, you can apply to become a prefect; a highly regarded position of responsibilty. The application process is rigorous and prefects gain valuable leadership, negotiation and communication skills. The prefect team work with the Headmistress and Head of Sixth Form throughout the year helping to develop the Sixth Form and the school. Prefects run clubs and activities and oversee many aspects of student life. Other opportunities for leadership include the Global Young Leaders Conference in Washington and New York, or a trip to Borneo with Camps International for voluntary environmental work (and learning to scuba dive!).

Dower House is

great preparation for

university as you learn

to be more independent there. It’s also a good place both to study and to socialise. Year 13 pupil

Life at Dower House Over half our Sixth Form board (either fully, weekly or flexibly) at Dower House. Run by Senior Housemistress, Mrs Bot, it has warm and friendly atmosphere with an individual study bedroom for every boarder and dedicated study spaces for the day girls, as well as kitchens, common rooms and an ICT suite. As with the main school, Dower House has wireless access throughout. This is also where the Head of Sixth Form’s office is based, ensuring every student has access to continuous support and guidance throughout the school year. Sixth Form boarders are encouraged to prepare for university life by taking more responsibility for their own time, cooking (although meals are also available in the main school) and doing laundry. It is a great opportunity to get used to these things in a family environment with guidance from friendly staff! Students can choose to board full time, weekly or to flexi-board a few nights a week; this is a useful option often taken in the run up to examinations, or when there is a particular event.

Scholarships Scholarships are available for academic excellence, along with sports, drama, music and art scholarships. Full details are available in our information booklet.

I had never felt so successful in my life as when I discovered I was the new Head of Windsor. Year 13 pupil

In addition, girls who are planning to study medicine or law at university may apply for the Foundation Scholarship programme. This prestigious award combines work experience, mentoring and advice on university applications, as well as a 15% remittance on fees.

Life After Princess Helena College Our well planned and successful careers and enrichment programme will help you to choose the best path after A levels. The programme includes lectures that provide information about specific careers, universities and gap years, mock interviews undertaken by experts and one-to-one guidance and support in creating outstanding applications for UCAS and other higher education establishments both in Britain and abroad. In addition, girls participate in a variety of extra-curricular enrichment activities including First Aid, hospitality training, self defence and volunteering. We have an excellent track record at A Level and each year approximately 98% of our students go on to Higher Education. We regularly have students who gain places at Oxford, Cambridge, Central St Martin’s College of Art & Design and The Royal College of Music. Other popular locations to study courses ranging from Languages, Architecture, Medicine, Mathematics, Politics to History and Zoology are Bristol, Durham, Sheffield, London, Newcastle, Edinburgh and Liverpool. We warmly invite you to come and see Princess Helena College for yourself.

Princess Helena College Preston Hitchin Hertfordshire SG4 7RT Tel +44 (0) 1462 432100 Fax +44 (0) 1462 443871 Email Registered Charity number 311064

Princess Helena College Sixth Form Information  
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