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The Sixth Form Experience

Introducing the Sixth Form

The Sixth Form is a stepping stone to where you want to head in life and we will help you prepare.


ith small classes and close working relationships with teachers and tutors, Stonar’s Sixth Form provides a fantastic environment for fulfilling your academic potential. Alongside this, our Sixth Formers are given the opportunities for personal development, leadership and co-curricular activities they need to become happy and successful young adults. You will be free to express your individuality and not pressured to conform. An outstanding tutor team will support you and go the extra mile in helping you at every turn. Relationships between staff and students are excellent - in classes, at

social events, whilst pursuing challenging activities, and in mentoring during these two important years. Even after students leave, they maintain contact with tutors and frequently seek advice - whether on CV writing or an academic essay - and of course our tutors are delighted to help. Whilst the majority of our students go on to university, this is not the only option and you will find that instead of being pigeon-holed, we will explore all the options with you. More importantly you need to be ready for the challenging global marketplace and the likelihood that you will have not just one, but several careers.


You will study 3-5 subjects of your choice, some of which you will take a full A Level in; others which you will take to AS Level. You will be guided and advised by your tutors and subject teachers every step of the way to ensure you reach your full academic potential. We will teach you, but, more importantly, you will learn how to study and research for yourself, just as you will at university. A wide range of well-respected subjects is available which may vary year on year subject to demand: Art, Biology, Business Studies, Chemistry, English Literature, French, Geography, History, Maths, Music, Photography, Physics, Physical Education, Psychology, Spanish and Theatre Studies. There is also an opportunity for overseas students to take an A Level in their native language as well as IELTS and other English qualifications. EQUESTRIAN QUALIFICATIONS As well as opportunities to ride and our Rider Development Programme, an exciting array of vocational options are available in our Equestrian Centre. Those looking to embark on an equestrian career can study EQLs in Horse Care and Management, the UK Coaching Certificate and the BHS Assistant Instructor qualification. We timetable equestrian commitments with the academic programme to ensure that pupils get the best out of both sides during their time at Stonar. RESEARCH SKILLS & EPQ This compulsory course equips students with all of the essential skills necessary to be a more effective student, helping you with study skills, exam technique, planning and researching. This can lead to the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) which carries similar UCAS points to an AS Level.


If you’re an A* student, then our new academic scholarships could be for you!

These substantial awards will be offered to girls and boys who are expected to achieve a significant number of A* grades at GCSE. The awards will be conditional on achieving the required grades in Summer 2017 as follows: Scholarship worth up to 75% of day fees: 8 or more full course GCSEs (or IGCSEs) at A* Scholarship worth up to 50% of day fees: 5 or more full course GCSEs (or IGCSEs) at A* plus 3 or more at grade A A range of other scholarships including Riding, Art, Drama, Music and Sport are also available. Contact the Registrar, Karen Ibbott for more information on 01225 701741.

Beyond the curriculum

There are numerous opportunities to stretch yourself and get involved with a broad range of activities.


Academic progress is paramount but we also encourage our Sixth Formers to embrace leadership opportunities and develop their potential beyond the curriculum. Our Head Girl and prefect team lead the school while other Sixth Formers choose to supervise activities in the Prep School or help out in the boarding houses. Core roles include Head of House and taking the lead in organising the inter-house competitions. There is a Year 11 and 12 planning committee that shapes the events and activities for the next academic year in the Sixth Form, ensuring that these match the interests of the students. The choice of activities is wide and there are trips and challenges which broaden pupils’ horizons and prepare them for the wider world.

“I had plenty of opportunities to develop leadership and I’ve also seen the importance of working in a team.” Year 13 pupil


Following a successful Camps International trip to Borneo in 2016, we are now preparing a group for a trip to Kenya in 2018, an extraordinary opportunity for travel, adventure and personal development. Pupils will explore the countryside from vast open savannahs with amazing wildlife, to pristine beaches and coral reef, rainforests and mighty snow-capped mountains. This is combined with project work to benefit communities which could involve building school desks, painting classrooms or constructing water tanks. Pupils will also train for a scuba diving qualification.


Our Romania Challenge experience sends a team of Sixth Formers to a Romanian slum where they work with destitute families on a project such as building a new dwelling or farm buildings to help the family take steps towards a more sustainable way of life. Pupils are responsible for all their own fund-raising and many describe it as ‘life-changing.’


There are many sports on offer catering for all abilities and interests and all Sixth Formers take part in Sport. The major team sports during the Autumn and Spring terms are Hockey and Netball. There are opportunities to pursue Athletics, Swimming, Cross-Country, and Tennis. Sixth Formers also have the option to take part in other fitness activities such as Zumba and boot-camps. Our Equestrian Centre provides regular tuition; pupils can fit riding around their timetable and will also have the opportunity to compete at NSEA competitions, British Eventing and unaffiliated events.


The Sixth Form Culinary Skills course includes the Leiths Cookery Toolbox; invaluable for those looking for a career in the hospitality industry, planning a ski season or simply as a life skill. Pupils complete the course over two terms in Autumn and Spring.

D of E

The Duke of Edinburgh Award is very popular with our Sixth Formers who can take their Silver and Gold Awards. A rewarding journey where you’ll develop independence, initiative and confidence, a D of E award is widely recognised by universities and employers and can open doors to new opportunities. The D of E comprises five sections; skill, physical, volunteering, residential project and expedition. We organise a comprehensive training program for the expeditions and support for the other elements of the scheme.

Support You will never lack for advice and guidance at Stonar. Charlotte Bennett Head of Sixth Form

TUTORS Each Sixth Former will be under the care of a highly experienced Sixth Form tutor: Mrs Ginny Sherman Mrs Linda Smith Mr David Wicks The tutor is the first port of call for students and parents for academic and pastoral support throughout your two years in the Sixth Form. TEACHERS Our small class sizes will help you develop positive and productive relationships with your teachers who are happy to talk over any issue. HOUSEPARENTS Mrs Lucy Noad and Mrs Emma White are the houseparents in York House, Stonar’s Sixth Form boarding house, and provide additional support for boarders. HWBC The Health & Well-Being Centre, staffed by two nurses, provides a complete professional healthcare service to pupils.

Charlotte Bennett oversees the academic and pastoral welfare of all the pupils in the Sixth Form. Pupils are always welcome in her office to talk about anything and everything that they might need help with. Mrs Bennett offers support for UCAS applications and personal statements as well as being part of the EPQ team. A club, Life After Stonar, provides pupils with advice on crucial aspects of adult life, including finance, taxes and mortgages. Charlotte Bennett also runs the social programme in the Sixth Form which includes theatre trips, outdoor education opportunities, the Oxford inspiration trip, meals out, cinema trips, etiquette training, exchanges with NACE school in Paris, as well as overseas expeditions (Ecuador, Morocco, Borneo and Kenya 2018).

“My aim is to support every pupil in their ambitions for whatever field they aspire to be in. I want everyone to enjoy their time in the Sixth Form and leave as well rounded individuals with something to offer the wider world or their university.”

Anthony Curtis Head of Careers

Anthony Curtis runs the careers office at Stonar and offers one-onone guidance to all pupils to help them make their career choices and prepare themselves fully for the next steps. Stonar works in partnership with ISCO (Independent Schools Careers Office), also known as Futurewise, to provide guidance on university selection and the UCAS process. Futurewise provides a comprehensive and personalised service to students to enable them to take control of their own career planning choices.

CAREERS SERVICES • Personal statement guidance • CV writing • Mock interviews • Work Experience placements • Gap year advice • Funding higher education • Careers Guidance

Destinations Our pupils are encouraged to follow their interests and talents. They find their paths in a wide variety of courses and institutions.

*A selection of destinations of our pupils 2014-16

Sixth Form Life-style A good balance between work and play.


e foster a good mix between work and play so that everyone gets the most of their final two years at Stonar. Social events in-house including cocktail and canapĂŠ evenings, formal dinners and the Christmas party are combined with trips throughout the year such as meals out, shopping trips, cinema visits and much more. Recent theatre trips have included Flashdance, War Horse and Billy Elliot. Annual trips take place to the Houses of Parliament where pupils learn about government and democracy. A trip also runs to Oxford University to give pupils an insight in to life at University and to encourage them to aim for the very best institutions.


York House, our dedicated boarding house for Sixth Form students, is designed to provide a preuniversity experience. In York, pupils are encouraged to be independent and to take a greater degree of responsibility for organising their time, be it for study, sport or socialising. With a large common room, a kitchen, laundry and study area, York offers modern and comfortable facilities. The rooms are a mix of single and twin study bedrooms. There is a private garden which the pupils use for quiet study or relaxing during fine weather.


Sixth Form students wear their own choice of business attire, not a school uniform and the whole school looks to them to set a standard of smart dress and presentation.


If you pass your driving test, you may bring your car to school.


There are ample opportunities for pupils not taking drama and music as academic subjects to get involved with arts. Peripatetic teachers, music groups, the senior school production, and inter-house music and drama competitions all provide a rich creative dimension to life at Stonar.

“I was well prepared for life after school. Stonar provides many opportunities to develop independence and strength of character; with a huge range of academic and adventurous trips, inspirational visiting speakers and the many charitable projects the school is involved with.� Year 13 pupil




The best thing about Stonar is the whole school is really friendly. You can talk to your teachers if you have a problem with anything. It’s small and close and a really comfortable environment. We had a lot of encouragement. Everyone is here to work hard and it makes you want to work hard too. Stonar is welcoming and it’s very nurturing. It’s accepting of different cultures and personalities. It has been so lovely growing up in the Stonar family. As I got older, I looked out for the younger pupils and helped them when they were homesick. My parents moved around so much, but Stonar has always been there. There was always something going on in the boarding house. It is so sociable. One of my favourite memories will be the Romania Challenge. I absolutely loved it and it’s amazing that the school can offer an experience like this. Stepping out of the Stonar bubble and being able to help others made us all realise how lucky we are to go to Stonar. We became a very close group and I will never forget it. Art was my favourite subject. I enjoyed the freedom – the teachers were open to my ideas and guided me, but I could use whatever materials I felt most comfortable with and was taught the right techniques to get the most out of them.

Izzy is now studying Textiles and Fashion Design at Southampton University.

The teachers are one of the best things about Stonar. They are all really helpful and gave me so much support, even during the holidays. They work hard to make each lesson different. If you like sport, there is plenty at Stonar. The coaching is excellent, with specialist teachers for each sport. I was in the first netball team and we had plenty of opportunities to play together as a team, with fixtures on Saturdays. As captain of the netball team, deputy head of Hart House and finally as Head Girl, I had plenty of opportunities to develop leadership, but I’ve also seen the importance of working in a team. I ran a lot of the house events. Inter-house dance and music competitions give everyone a chance to show off talents that might otherwise not be seen. I met regularly with our careers advisor during the Sixth Form who helped me and talked through all the different options open to me. A really good Sixth Form club, Life After Stonar, gave us an insight into aspects of adult life such as taxes and mortgages. Study Skills classes provided guidance on working independently which will stand me in good stead at University. Favourite Stonar memories include the Year 10 activities weekend at Weston-Super-Mare. We camped and had a go at activities like indoor skiing, abseiling and rock climbing. Stonar has such a strong community feel. Everyone knows everyone – pupils and teachers. I have made friends for life here. There is something for everyone, whether you’re an all-rounder or a specialist: good sport, music and a ‘gifted and talented’ programme.

Felicity is now studying Modern Languages at Durham University.


I boarded from Year 5; my parents chose Stonar because they knew I would be well looked after. When we were younger we used to go out and play hide and seek on the front lawn. By the time I was in York, the Sixth Form House, when we got back to the dorm in the evening everyone did their own thing. Sometimes we played on the Wii and we always enjoyed the dance games. In my final year, we were mostly studying. As a boarder you are much more involved in the school; you get to know everyone so well. House events at Stonar are special and the support you get is amazing. For example, when you’re running the cross country and you hear everyone cheering for you, it’s a great feeling.

I studied Chemistry, Biology and Maths for A Level and played a lot of netball too. I had great support from teachers during my university applications, including help with practice interviews. My Maths teacher’s sonin-law is a doctor and she arranged for him to talk to me about medical school and show me around Liverpool where he was a student.

I play the tenor horn and I was in the Wind Band and Chamber Choir. I’ve been playing since I was four so I’ve grown up with music. It’s helped me learn how to prioritise time. The relationships with teachers are so strong; I loved this about Stonar the whole way through my time there. Because the school is small it’s more informal – the staff know more about you. They are professional and we got a lot of work done, but we could have a laugh at the same time.

I was Deputy Head Girl which was a real honour. There were three of us in the Head Girl team so we could spread out the responsibilities.

Abbey is now studying Medicine at Cardiff University


The stables have been good for teaching me time management and organisation. You have to be organised to fit everything in and get back to the classroom on time and looking presentable. Horses are also such a good head-leveller. Things don’t always go the way you expect and that is a good lesson for life. I completed an AASE Equestrian Apprenticeship alongside my A Levels and Stonar was very supportive in helping me fit everything in. Psychology was my favourite subject; the teacher is very experienced in the field and has lots of interesting stories which really adds to it.

The main thing that springs to mind when I think about Stonar is what a caring environment it is. Everyone is valued and everyone takes an interest in what other people are doing, whether it’s small or big. I flexiboarded on Monday and Tuesday nights which I loved. There’s no segregation at Stonar between the boarders, and the day girls all feel like part of the house as well.

When I was younger I had the dream of riding in the Olympics, but now I just want to get as far as I can. The aim is to be selected for the GB team, although of course that is a big goal. My favourite memories of Stonar will be coming back from the yard in to the boarding house and being with friends - we had so much fun.

Laura is now studying Psychology at Warwick University.

STONAR Cottles Park Atworth Wiltshire SN12 8NT T: +44 (0) 1225 701740 E: :

Stonar Sixth Form brochure  

An introduction to Sixth Form life at Stonar