Caterham School offers an education for life and a preparation for the challenges it poses, whether intellectual, physical, technological or social. Sixth Form students play a central part in the life of the School, as senior members of the school community and as role models for the next generation.  The Sixth Form also represents the culmination of a student’s school career as well as a preparation for university. These two years are likely to be the most challenging and exciting that a student will have experienced. During this time, students will develop the maturity and focused ambition to succeed and perhaps even go beyond their own expectations. Our Sixth Form students involve themselves fully in a wide and stimulating range of activities and we set high standards to enable them to develop the academic, creative, sporting and personal strengths needed for the 21st century.

Sixth Form Entry Criteria

There are specific entry requirements for the Sixth Form and for each A level subject and these are set out in the attached Option Booklets. These have been established because, in our experience, those who do not achieve these grades in GCSE will not succeed at A level. All pupils must qualify to study four subjects.

The AS (Lower Sixth) and A2 (Upper Sixth) courses are separate, although together they constitute a full A level. Graduation from Lower to Upper Sixth will not be automatic. Candidates who perform poorly in AS level examinations may need to repeat the Lower Sixth year, and at least a ‘C’ grade at AS level will be expected of those who wish to continue a subject to A level in the Upper Sixth. Decisions are made on which subjects should be continued to A2 level when the results of AS examinations are known.

Success in the Sixth Form

Students will need a responsible attitude towards work as they will be making a deliberate commitment to two further years of academic study with the objective of gaining a university place. This commitment brings greater freedom but also greater responsibilities. We will help students to organise their work and free time to achieve a sound balance between the demands of academic work and personal life.

To complete A levels successfully with good grades, students will probably need to spend up to three hours per night on work which increases the depth of understanding of the chosen subjects – the average weekly commitment in the Lower Sixth is 16 hours and in the Upper Sixth it is 18 hours. This time may be spent on specific tasks that have been set for particular deadlines but it will also have to be spent on additional independent reading, note-taking or problem solving, using class notes, texts or reference books. Students may also need to complete holiday work to review significant topics from the previous term.

The Sixth Form Programme

The School offers an extensive and varied curriculum in the Sixth Form. However, as some subjects are very popular, the availability of subjects may be constrained by demand.

Every student in the Lower Sixth will follow a full academic programme of four or five AS Level subjects. At the end of the first year in the Sixth Form students will sit AS examinations in each of their subjects. Each AS Level (three study units) will be worth half of the full A Level (six units). AS results will be declared on UCAS forms, and will form an important part of the university entrance procedure. The Lower Sixth curriculum will also include Games and Religious, Personal & Social Education. In the Upper Sixth most students will take three subjects to A Level, although many continue with all four of their AS subjects. Some students may begin a new AS Level subject. Students will also participate in Games and Community Service. Students should be aware that their satisfaction with their choice of A Levels and their motivation towards the target of university will be key elements in ensuring success in examinations.

Students will be allocated a House Tutor who will monitor academic work and involvement in co-curricular activities, in consultation with the Director of Sixth Form, the Head of Year and House Head