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Frequently Asked Questions

Who do I contact if I have a concern?

For year 12 concerns, you can e-mail:

Miss McCaffrey


For year 13 concerns, please e-mail

Miss Georgalis 

Alternatively, you can call the Sixth Form Office on 0208 358 2813

Are there any rules in the Sixth form?

You will find St James Sixth Form has a friendly and ‘adult’ environment in which you are encouraged to develop a sense of independence and to take responsibility for your studies. 

  • Students should keep all work in an appropriate and well organised form, e.g. in a file, that is available for checking if required.
  • Students are expected to manage their study time. This means making appropriate use of study periods
  • Substantial homework will be set in all subjects, with longer deadlines in certain areas e.g. for coursework.
  • Each student will need to spend at least five hours per week per subject studying outside of lesson time.
  • Students have a target grade for each subject.  Any assignments that are graded by staff as being below target will need to be re-submitted. Students who appear to be heading for a grade that is below target will be put on an additional study support program. This may involve more regular mentoring appointments, closer scrutiny of work, some or all study periods becoming supervised sessions in the Sixth Form , alerting parents to the situation and a meeting with parents

We don’t have lots of rules and regulations. We do however expect high standards of behavior, including attendance and punctuality, and these are set out clearly in our student code of conduct.

Is there a dress code for Sixth Form Students?

Yes, students wear smart business wear in the Sixth Form. The dress code is appreciated by students and staff expect students to adhere to its agreed provisos.

The underlying principle is that dress must be appropriate in an 11 – 18 school environment and a work place.

Can students come in late if they have no lessons at the start of the day?

No, all students in both year 12 & 13 must be in school everyday for registration at 8.35am and for assembly once a week.

Are Sixth Form students allowed to leave the school site during the day?

Only at lunchtimes and students must sign out and sign back in at reception. Students are also allowed to leave the site after their last lesson of the day.

Can students go off site for lunch?

Yes, however they must return in good time for period 5 lessons. 

The canteen is open for Sixth Form students all day serving a wide range of hot and cold meals. The canteen operates a system of finger print recognition cashless payments, which means that you will need to keep your account topped up.

There is also a vending machines in the common room and a hot and cold drinks machine for students to use.

What are the class sizes?

These vary but generally range from 10 to 20 students.

I've heard that there are free periods - what can I do at those times?

In between your taught lessons for your subjects there are spaces in your timetable for you to carry out your independent study. These sessions are registered, thus compulsory to attend, but they require your own self-management in terms of how you use them. 

You can choose to work in the Learning Resource Centre, or in one of the many department work areas around the school. 

What else can I do at Sixth Form?

There are a wide variety of additional enrichment activities on offer in our Sixth Form and we strongly recommend that you get involved in activities other than just your academic studies.

There are many sports clubs, both competitive and for leisure, and a full enrichment package. Special interest groups meet and arrange various events and a huge amount more.

What happens if I feel sick whilst at school?

If you are feeling sick during the day you must see the Pastoral Support Manager who will contact home to get permission to send you home, if you are unable to remain in lessons.

If you have had an accident, or are feeling very ill, you should go straight to our Student Services for attention.

Is Wi-Fi available at St James?

We provide FREE Wi-Fi throughout the Sixth Form. This is just one of the excellent facilities and services our IT and Technical Services department provides.

Is there any financial support available for students?

We offer a bursary scheme which is a discretionary source of financial help.  Eligible students will also have access to free school meals.

For further information, please contact the Sixth Form on 0208 358 2813.

If I have a problem that is worrying me, who can I talk to?

If the problem is one of organisation of your work, for example, letting things pile up, missing deadlines or not making efficient use of your study periods, then your Form Tutor or subject teachers will be happy to offer practical help.

Your Form Tutor or teacher may then refer you to your Head of Student Learning (HoSL), if required.

If the problem is of a subject specific nature, lack of understanding of a particular topic or a feeling that you are being overloaded with conflicting work deadlines, then talk to your subject teachers and then if necessary to either your Form Tutor, or your HoSL

You also have year 13 subject ambassadors to go to in each KS5 subject area for support.

Do you have a Support Service at Sixth Form?

We do. To arrange an appointment please contact the Pastoral Support Manager,

What will the Sixth Form do to support my general health and well-being?

There may be times during your sixth form studies when you feel under pressure and stressed. In such situations, you are encouraged to talk to your Form Tutor, your Head of Student Learning, Pastoral Support Manager or the Head of Sixth Form.

If you would prefer not to discuss your problems in a school environment then you should consider making an appointment with your GP, or using one of the helplines advertised in the Sixth Form area.

If I am unhappy on my course what can I do?

If you are considering changing courses, then you should discuss your plans, at the earliest opportunity, with the Head of Sixth Form. You will need to complete a subject change form.

Once we are satisfied that you have thought through all the issues surrounding a change of subject and discussed these with your parents, you will be allowed to make a subject change. All such changes need to be authorised by the Head of Sixth Form and are subject to a supportive parental agreement and sufficient space being available in the relevant sets. However, course changes will not normally be possible after 30 September.

What facilities are available to help me study independently?

The ability to work independently is essential to success in Sixth Form. In fact, independent learning is what distinguishes Sixth Form study to study in school. You will find that the more efficiently you use this time, the better your eventual level of success will be and you will take less work home.

There are several areas set aside specifically for independent work, either as an individual or in a group. The Sixth Form common room is a staffed silent study area.  Students who want to work in groups can work at the back of St Dominic’s Hall unsupervised.  Students will have study periods on their timetable where they will be supervised in a classroom by a member of staff.

Are there any activities i can get involved in?

Yes, lots. You are expected to aim for one hundred hours of enrichment during year 12. Early in year 12 there will be enrichment information sessions, at which you will be able to sign up to one or more of these opportunities:

·                     Competitive sports fixtures against other sixth forms in Barnet

·                     League –Football teams and a Netball team

·                     Sport and leisure opportunities

·                     Year prefects /Subject support

·                     Duke of Edinburgh

·                     Reading Programme working with students in main school

·                     Lower school classroom support

·                     Work experience

·                     End of term parties

·                     Social trips one per half term- Top Golf / Theatre / Film Club / Bowling

·                     Subject specific residential trips

·                     Charity and community work

 

What can I do to get involved with the Sixth Form?

We invite you to become part of the Sixth Form Vision Team and give us feedback through focus groups and surveys.

Will I be able to progress at the end of my course?

We aim to provide guidance and support whether you choose a higher education or vocational path. The Sixth Form area is well stocked with university prospectuses and books giving advice on every relevant aspect of the subject, and there is IT provision to allow greater access to information on colleges and courses. Careers interviews can be arranged at any time for any member of the Sixth Form.

What about my next steps after Sixth Form?

If you are planning to progress into work or apprenticeship at the end of your course, our website has lots of live vacancies to help you find the best opportunities. The careers team can also help you make a great application, with advice on interview skills and CVs.

Unifrog has been purchased for students to access support with Apprenticeship and University advice for all Sixth Form students.  

We have a highly experienced Careers Officer who has worked with many  schools. We have staff experienced with the UCAS process and the school has links with many Universities, including Oxbridge.

All students will have access to university advanced seminars, lectures, summer schools and open days. Support is provided  for BMAT,UKCAT and Oxbridge entrance.

 

Are there any opportunities to be a Student Leader?

Yes.  The Sixth Form has an elected Head Girl and Head Boy plus deputies alongside the Sixth Form Vision team who are responsible for

  • ·                     Organisation of the Sixth Form Ball
  • ·                     Leavers Mass
  • ·                     Leavers Year book
  • ·                     Student voice feedback
  • ·                     Social events
  • ·                     The organisation of charity events.

Subject ambassadors support students in year 12 for each course These students are elected by staff to represent their departments and to support the decisions for year 11 students when making their subject choices

Can I go to University with a BTEC Vocational qualification?

Yes. A level 3 OCR Technical Diploma is equivalent to 2 A levels and is attributed UCAS points in the same way. Achieving triple distinction star grades in your BTEC gives you the same UCAS points as 2 A* grades at A level.

What links do you have with universities?

Apart from any departmental based links, the school already has well established links with colleges in Oxford and Cambridge, Imperial College London, Hertfordshire University, Reading University and Middlesex University.