Please find outlined below the advice for Parents/Carers and students in Year 11.
First of all, please know that we have a great deal of empathy for students in Year 11 – who have been significantly affected by the current COVID-19 pandemic. We will miss teaching them in their final term, and they will miss the opportunity to show all they have learned through the normal GCSE/BTEC examination process. Despite this, there is still plenty of opportunity to continue learning during lockdown. In fact, this is probably more important for year 11s than in any previous year.
Despite not sitting the examinations this summer, students in year 11 will be awarded grades for their GCSEs. If you have any queries about the way that students in Year 11 will receive grades this Summer please read the attached letter from OFQUAL.
What now/what next
All students in Year 11 will be heading into Post 16 education next year, whether this is at our own sixth form at Bluecoat Academy Aspley, at another sixth form or college, or possibly through an apprenticeship.
If you are unsure as to what direction you want your future to go in, please see the attached guides on accessing some free Careers software to help you make informed decisions.
Although GCSEs have ended for students prematurely, students should still continue with educational routines and learning. This will help to bridge the gap between GCSE and Post-16 education.
Our dedicated sixth form teachers have created google classrooms designed to support our year 11 students in bridging the gap between where their GCSEs left off and where A Level courses will begin. Joining the google classrooms will provide a fantastic opportunity to be introduced to some of the teaching staff whose class you may be in, begin collaborating with some of the students from across Archway Learning Trust who may become your classmates and most importantly, provide you with activities, reading lists, and links to other engaging materials to make sure that you are ready to succeed in September. Click on the link below for the codes to access the different subjects.
Select a minimum of three classrooms to join from the list of classroom codes below. I hope you enjoy this opportunity to get a sneak peak of what your learning for the next two years may look like and immerse yourself in your chosen subjects. (Please note that joining a google classroom and engaging with the learning opportunities does NOT guarantee your place on the course in September.)
We are confident that wherever you are hoping to study next year, you will find the transition google classrooms helpful.
Bluecoat Academy Sixth Form
Please see below for further messages from Ms Wood (Head of Sixth Form – Bluecoat Academy Aspley)
Bluecoat Academy Sixth Form are still accepting applications! If you haven’t done so already then browse our course guide and apply online here: https://www.bluecoataspley.co.uk/sixth-form/admissions/
If you have already applied and need to update your course choices then please log back in to your online application to complete changes by next Monday 4th May. You will still be able to change your course choices after this date but we will be using the information we have that week to refine our curriculum plan for September and assess if we need to put more classes on due to high demand.
Support with decision making
We know that making the decision about where to study for your A Levels is a big one, and many of our applicants reply on the opportunity to meet with pastoral staff at our annual Question and Answer evening and the chance to try out your chosen subjects during our Taster Days. Due to school closures we were forced to cancel our Q&A evening scheduled for 19th March and instead we provided the attached FAQs document. Our taster sessions, which are designed to support students in their subject choices, were scheduled to run 13-15 July. We are currently exploring what online tools we could use to bring A Level Taster Days to your homes in case it is not safe to invite students into sixth form. In the meantime, the transition google classrooms will give you an excellent into insight to the subjects you are thinking of studying.
Enrolment onto courses
The system that exam boards will be using to calculate GCSE grades this summer as set out in Ofqual’s guidance is designed to be fair and robust, and takes into account a broad range of evidence. As such, we will be accepting these grades as evidence of meeting entry criteria. GCSE results day has been confirmed for Thursday 20th August and we will enrol students onto their chosen courses in the days following this (please check your offer letter for precise details). If circumstances mean the enrolment process must take place online then our application system would allow for this.
Once students begin their sixth form studies we will be putting a great deal of effort into ensuring that students are on the right courses. Teachers will be planning assessment opportunities in the first weeks of the term to provide further reassurance of student suitability for courses. Students are therefore encouraged to begin accessing related course content for any courses they may end up taking. The transition google classrooms are an excellent way to do this.
Update on Level 2 Provision
Bluecoat Academy Sixth Form are very proud to offer a level 2 curriculum for those students who would benefit from an additional year to work towards achieving their grade 4 in English and/or Maths.
As you may be aware our tenancy at the facility we are currently using to house our level 2 cohort is coming to an end, and while we continue to search for suitable premises for our level 2 learners, we have made the decision to accommodate our level 2 learners at our Sixth Form Centre based at Bluecoat Aspley Academy for academic year 2020-2021.
As our Sixth Form’s strong reputation means we already educate large numbers of learners at our Sixth Form Centre on Aspley Lane, this means we will be able to offer Level 2 to a limited number of students. We will therefore be prioritising students who are within the Archway Learning Trust family and suggest that students from outside of the Trust who were applying for level 2 courses ensure they have applied to alternative Further Education providers in case we are unable to accommodate them.
Please note that we believe the above will only affect applications to enrol onto our level 2 courses. Level 3 applications will not be affected.
Update on curriculum offer
Our curriculum offer is reviewed regularly and we seek to share decisions with you as soon as the information becomes available to allow you to make informed and well considered subject choices. I therefore want to let you know that because of the above update regarding level 2 provision, we will not be offering Level 2 IT Cambridge Technology, Level 2 Childcare or Level 2 Creative Media. I believe our curriculum still offers a breadth of related choices that would allow you to progress into areas of further study or employment within sectors related to these courses and would be happy to discuss this further if you are affected by these curriculum updates.
If you have any questions specific to your application or about the transition google classrooms then I would love to hear from you.
Please drop me an email at BAAsixthformadmissions@bluecoat.uk.com and I will get back to you.