Tips & Tricks

Helping Your Child Get Into Sixth Form 

If your child has decided that sixth form is the right post-GCSE path for them, then it’s time to brush up on the entry requirements they need to meet to be accepted. Each course will require certain criteria to be met, and many institutions will request a personal statement to support the application. I have teamed up with a top sixth form college to help give your child the best chance at securing a place at their chosen sixth form college. 

If your child has a specific course in mind it’s a good idea to research the entry requirements way in advance. If they have to achieve a certain GCSE grade to be accepted, it’s important to ascertain if they are working in line with that level throughout years 10 and 11. If they aren’t predicted to achieve the necessary grade, extra support may be needed to help them get where they need to be. Considering alternative courses as a back-up plan in case they don’t meet the criteria is also a sensible option, as it can help to minimise potential disappointment on results day. If your child hasn’t achieved their target grade, you should still contact the college or sixth form as they may be able to offer your child a place on a similar course, or even recommend other institutions where your child would be accepted. 

Some sixth forms may request a personal statement as part of the application process. This is a way for them to learn a bit more about your child’s strengths and skills that may not necessarily be reflected through exam results alone. Applicants should use this as an opportunity to highlight their hobbies and ambitions, and include any extra-curricular clubs or programs they are involved in. It is important that they proofread their personal statement to ensure their grammar and spelling are correct, as the sixth form will be assessing their written communication skills as part of the application. 

In some cases, your child may have to attend an interview as part of the admissions process. This usually applies to specialised institutions or more competitive subjects. Although this may be daunting, your child should see it as an opportunity to find out more about the course so they can decide whether it is the right choice for them. Make sure they have thoroughly researched the sixth form and the syllabus, so they’ll feel prepared to explain why they are suited for that particular course.

Rachael is a 31 year old mum to 10 year old Luke and 5 year old Oscar. She lives in England and writes about family life, crafts, recipes, parenting wins(and fails), as well as travel, days out, fashion and living the frugal lifestyle.

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