The Sixth Form at KC

Welcome from the Head

Welcome to the Sixth Form which represents the pinnacle of the Kent College experience. Here you will have the chance to explore your favourite subjects in greater depth and develop your intellectual curiosity. As Sixth Formers you are also role models for the younger students and we ask you to help us to continue to build the exceptionally caring atmosphere at Kent College. We want you to be happy here, as your well-being is really important, so it is important to strike a balance between all of your activities.

Although a strong academic programme is at the heart of Sixth Form life we also expect students to play a major role in the extra-curricular spheres of the School. The Sixth Form presents numerous opportunities to take on leadership roles which will help to grow and develop your character and confidence. This means that you will flourish and be ready to make the transition to life beyond the School either at university or in the world of work when the time comes.

Mr Phil Wise – Head of Senior School

Photo of Mr Phil Wise, Senior School Head

KC Sixth Form at a Glance

210 SIXTH FORM
STUDENTS

60 CLUBS AND
ACTIVITIES

REGULARLY IN THE
TOP
10 IB SHOOLS IN
THE UK

40 DIFFERENT
NATIONALITIES

HEALTH AND
WELL BEING
SUPPORT

OF A LEVEL STUDENTS
ACHIEVED A*B IN THE
LAST 5 YEARS

SMALL SIZE
TEACHING GROUPS

OXBRIDGE, UK AN
INTERNATIONAL

UNIVERSITY APPLICATION
PREPERATION

A LEVEL
COURSES

BESPOKE
TIMETABLES

LIFE SKILLS
COACHING AND
VISITING SPEAKERS

CAMBRIDGE
TECHNICAL DIPLOMA
&PRE U COURSES

SIXTH FORM
COMMON ROOM AND
STUDY CENTRE

30 BOARDING
COUTINGS A YEAR

Next Steps

STUDENTS REGULARLY GO
TO THEIR FIRST UNIVERSITY
OF CHOICE

AVERAGE STUDENT UCAS
POINTS. EQUIVALENT TO A* A A
AT A LEVEL

AVERAGE NUMBER OF
STUDENTS WHO GO TO
RUSSELL GROUP UNIVERSITIES

INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY
DESTINATIONS INCLUDE BOCCONI
IN MILAN, ESADE IN BARCELONA,
MADRID, UNIVERSITY OF BOSTON

What Our Students Say

"It so easy to fit in with the boarding community, I had never boarded before. I picked Kent College because this was the school where I felt most comfortable and welcomed."

Jessica (Nigeria) IB student

"Chemistry lessons filled with practical experiments, after school opportunities such as Electronics Club and the open atmosphere and ability to freely ask questions, have made my learning experience at Kent College a very valuable one".

Richard (South Korea) A Level student

"The opportunity to pursue my interests outside academic lessons, particularly in Music and Drama, is supported by the huge range of activities available as part of the extra curricular programme. I have been fortunate to perform in some of the most impressive buildings in Europe. Choir tours to Krakow, Budapest, Lyon and Venice have been incredible and memorable experiences."

Dulcie (UK) A Level student

"The learning environment has been extremely stimulating, enabling me to achieve the highest standards and providing me the opportunity to discover and explore new educational and career pathways for the future."

Pietro (Italy) IB student

"Enrichment activities such as sport, music, Duke of Edinburgh and the farm have allowed me to develop valuable skills outside the classroom, such as leadership, but also hugely contribute to my physical and mental wellbeing."

Ailsa (UK) A Level student

"Kent College Sixth Form allowed me to choose a range of subjects, such as Business, that have a high percentage of coursework, rather than all end of year exams. The pace of the course allows me to consolidate information and really suits my way of learning. The exams are well spaced through the year allowing me to thoroughly prepare. There is also the opportunity to retake exams if I want to improve my grade."

Edward (UK) Cambridge Technicals

  • INTELLECTUAL CHALLENGE AND PREPARATION FOR LIFE

  • The International Baccalaureate

  • A Levels, Pre U and Cambridge Technicals

  • Something for everyone

  • Health and Wellbeing

  • Boarding in the Sixth Form

  • The Next Step

Kent College is a leading provider of the IB Diploma Programme, consistently placed in the top ten IB schools in the UK. We also offer A Level, Pre-U and Cambridge Technical Diploma courses. With this broad range of courses on offer we are able to ensure students follow the most appropriate combination of subjects given their interests and abilities. We are passionate that every student receives the education that is right for them, and our dedicated team of teachers ensures our students not only achieve excellent results but that while doing so, they foster a lifelong love of learning.

At Kent College, we know that every student learns in a different way, and we believe that offering these multiple pathways allows each student the opportunity to challenge their individual strengths and abilities in the way that suits them best.

Photo of Mrs Claire Balsdon, Head of Sixth form (Years 12 & 13)

CONGRATULATIONS for successfully negotiating your GCSEs. The next two years should be some of the most exciting and challenging of your life. We believe that we give all students the opportunity to thrive and flourish in a learning environment specifically designed to meet their learning needs, with a range of academic choices including the IB Diploma, A Levels and Cambridge Technicals. The Sixth Form enables students to experience smaller tutorial style lessons and make use of timetabled independent study lessons, developing core skills to prepare them for their onward journey either into Higher Education or the workplace. Our diverse and international community is unique, allowing students of all backgrounds and faiths to be nurtured whilst being intellectually challenged in the classroom. We have a supportive family atmosphere at KC where teachers will always go the extra mile to help you with future decision making and supporting your progress.

Mrs Claire Balsdon - Head of Sixth Form

How to choose?

All the pathways offer challenging, highly-regarded qualifications which are accepted as university entrance qualifications worldwide. The IB and A Level programmes of study are two-year courses, with external exams at the end of the two years. The Cambridge Technical Diplomas are a combination of portfolios of work with less emphasis on terminal examinations, the Pre U Design course is 100% portfolio based.

The choice of which programme to study will rely largely on a student’s academic interests, personal learning style, and plans for university and beyond. Bespoke, individual timetables accommodate the subjects or combinations of subjects students wish to study, ensuring each student is able to pursue their interests.

Choosing the Right Course for You

A Level
IB Diploma
Students specialise in their chosen area of study, avoiding subjects they may have less interest in Students gain a breadth of knowledge across the languages, social sciences, sciences, maths, and arts
Most students study four subjects in year 12, reducing to three by Year 13 All students study six subjects over two years, three at higher level and three at standard level.
Students wishing to extend their knowledge of a subject can do so by completing an Extended Essay Students complete an Extended Essay, a Theory of Knowledge course (TOK) and the Creativity, Action, and Service programme (CAS)
Although there is no formal requirement for their academic programme, all Sixth Form students take advantage of our variety of extra-curricular programmes Through the CAS programme, students focus on personal development beyond the classroom during acts of creativity, service, and physical activity
A-Levels are marked from A*-U; Pre-U are marked from Distinction (1-3), Merit (1-3) and Pass (1-3); and Cambridge Technicals are marked from Distinction*-Pass The IB Diploma is awarded out of a maximum of 45 points, with 7-1 points per subject, and ToK and EE count for 3 points

The IB Diploma is an exciting programme that focuses not only on the academic enrichment of the student, but their personal development as a well-rounded individual. It is highly-respected internationally and recognised by all UK universities. The Diploma offers a breadth of knowledge and range of skills that are sought after by employers and higher education alike.

The IB Diploma allows students to follow six subjects from different areas of study including literature, a foreign language, humanities, science, maths, and an optional arts subject. Students also research and write an Extended Essay in an area of interest to them; this is highly regarded by universities. They also complement their academic study with a course on the Theory of Knowledge, as well as gaining credit for their extracurricular activities in Creativity, Action and Service.

The diploma was the perfect course for me. I love the breadth it allowed me to maintain while still being able to delve deep into my particular fields of interest.

The Diploma is a challenging course that will suit students who are hard working, well organised and have a genuine curiosity for the subjects of their study.

Since 2017, our students have consistently achieved an average of 37 points placing Kent College in the top 10 UK schools offering the IB.

International Baccalaureate subject choices

(all subjects are offered at Higher and Standard Level unless stated otherwise)
Block Subjects
1 Literature English literature , Italian, German
Language
Acquisition
Spanish1, French1, German1
Humanities History , Geography
Business Management
Economics
Sciences Physics, Biology, Chemistry
Maths Mathematics
Arts Art, Music

1 Group 2 languages may be studied at three levels:
ab initio, where students learn a language from scratch, or beginners level which counts as Standard Level, Standard Level and Higher Level

Creativity, Action, Service (CAS)

Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) focuses on personal development outside the classroom. The student engages in Creativity, through the arts and creative thinking; Action, through physical activity, contributing to a healthy lifestyle; and Service, volunteering to benefit others. A personal journey of self-discovery, CAS is a challenging endeavour in personal growth

Extended Essay

The Extended Essay is an in-depth study on a topic of the student’s choosing. It is the perfect opportunity to show knowledge, understanding, and enthusiasm for the student’s academic interests through high-level research and intellectual discovery.

Theory of Knowledge

The Theory of Knowledge focuses on critical thinking, challenging the notion of learning as the mere acquisition of facts. The complexities associated with knowledge are closely considered; we look at what we believe to be true, the reasons we have for holding these beliefs and whether or not our reasons for holding them are ‘good’. The aim is not only to introduce students to a range of ideas and debates, but to encourage them to view their own ideas, beliefs, and opinions in light of those of others.

Kent College offers a wide-variety of A Level and equivalent qualifications, allowing students to specialise in the subjects they are passionate about. We are certified as a top 50 UK Independent school for the percentage of pupils achieving A*- B grades at A Level.

We pride ourselves on the quality of our teaching. Students are engaged in their learning, and our small class sizes allow for increased individual attention, helping students to achieve their best. Teachers’ expectations of pupils are high, but all are aware of the need to support those who may find A Level work more challenging. Students are encouraged to work independently as much as possible, but staff are always happy to offer one-to-one support in order to help students succeed.

We offer a wide range of academic A Levels the Cambridge Pre-U in Design and a variety of Cambridge Technical Diploma courses, the latter provides a valuable alternative to students whose learning style may be more suited to ongoing projects and research activities rather than formal written examinations.

A Level students will normally study four subjects in Year 12 and continue with three of these to A Level in Year 13, though timetables can be tailored to individual student’s requirements.

The Pre U in Design and Cambridge Technical Diploma courses in ICT, Business Studies and Media are widely accepted by universities and colleges as well as providing entry to other professional qualifications or employment. The grading system is equivalent to A Level grade and the UCAS points system

A Wide Selection of Courses

Art Government and Politics (AS / one year only)
Biology History
Business Information Communications Technology, Cambridge Technical
Business, Cambridge Technical Italian
Chemistry Mathematics and Further Mathematics
Design, Cambridge Pre-U Media, Cambridge Technical
Drama and Theatre Studies Music / Music Technology
Economics
Physical Education
English Literature Physics
French Philosophy of Religion and Religious Ethics
Geography Spanish
German

Sixth Form students have more than 60 weekly activities and societies to choose from, and they are encouraged to participate in at least two per week. Whether musical, sporty, political or technologically inclined, there truly is something for everyone! From business, club to rock band, and archery to electronics, our students take full advantage of the opportunity to pursue their interests and develop new skills.

Kent College has a reputation for sporting excellence, and we aim to provide something for every pupil in the school – from recreational sport and promoting fitness, to top-level coaching for our elite players. Facilities include a sports hall, gym, squash court, an Astro-turf for hockey and tennis, and extensive pitches for football, rugby and cricket. The school also has facilities for trampolining, badminton, volleyball and basketball, as well as a Riding Centre, offering horse riding lessons and the opportunity to take part in competitions.

Many of our students show great enthusiasm for nature and the environment, and they engage with the outdoors in a variety of ways. Students ready for adventure take part in the Duke of Edinburgh Award programme and are able to undertake all levels of the award. Recent DofE trips for our Year 12s have included treks in the Dolomites in Italy or across Iceland. Others choose to get involved with our very own working farm; spanning 50 acres, students can join the school Farm Club and get involved looking after lambs, pigs, hens and cattle. There’s plenty to do, whether collecting eggs, giving the rabbits a cuddle, or showing our prizewinning calves at the Kent Show. Students dig in with Gardening Club, tend Blean Woods in Conservation Club, and protect the environment in our Eco-Warriors society.

Leadership & Challenge

Students have the opportunity to travel to destinations far and wide; recent expeditions have taken students to CERN in Switzerland, Iceland, Honduras and Costa Rica, as well as various sports tours, ski trips, and our annual trip to Tanzania

Sixth Form students play a vital role in the fabric of the school and have many opportunities to serve as ambassadors and leaders. Sixth Formers may be nominated to be Head Boy, Head Girl, House Captains and Prefects, providing leadership and community support to their fellow students. They also have the opportunity to serve as role models to younger students in their Boarding Houses, as well as take on leadership roles in activities and societies. Kent College also encourages a programme of volunteering at local primary schools and care facilities.

Friends for Life

Yearly Sixth Form events dot the calendar; beginning with our team building trip on Induction Day, the Year 12 Trip in Activities Week, Sixth Form Ball, Prefects’ Dinner and Leavers’ Service are much looked forward to. Acting as milestones on a student’s journey, students commemorate their achievements throughout their time at Kent College and make lifelong friends.

Well-being is at the heart of what we do and is central to our ethos as a Methodist school. Kent College is well-known for our family atmosphere and supportive environment, and we know it is vital that our students strike a balance between study and play, whether through sport, music or helping out on the Farm

Guidance and support are available whenever a student may need them, and while all members of staff are more than happy to help with any concerns, every student is supported by their personal tutor who they meet with daily, their Head of Year who ensures a smooth transition into Sixth Form and guides on university applications and future-planning, and their Head of House, who supports them through their entire tenure at Kent College.

The house system at Kent College is designed to impart a real sense of belonging, instilling friendly competition and forming lifelong bonds. All pupils and staff of the Senior School belong to one of these Houses, which are called Augustine, Becket, Chaucer and Marlowe. House competitions range from drama and music, to chess, problem-solving, photography, sport, art and spelling bees--every student is given a chance to shine

Three times a week, students meet for chapel, with one service being dedicated to upper school students--this is where achievements are celebrated and reflected upon, and our Chaplain is always available to be a listening ear

There are a variety of activities for health and well-being that students can engage in outside curriculum time, including yoga, conservation, and sports activities. To ensure students stay healthy and active, Sixth Form students have an afternoon of timetabled physical activity that they choose, including team sports, rowing, badminton and trampolining

Our 24/7 on-site medical team ensures students are cared for by qualified and current nursing staff, overseen by a Senior Nurse . A doctor visits the school twice a week, and a confidential listener is also available to students should they wish to share any concerns or worries that they have.

"The school houses help to build bonds between age groups and between boarders and day pupils. A sense of family pervades."

- Good Schools Guide

The Boarding community operates as an extended family with House Parents in each Boarding House ensuring that each child is happy during their time at KC.

They are also supported by assistant House Parents,Tutors and Managers who provide 24 hour care for the students ensuring that they have assistance with homework, as well as any practical matters, and are always ready to listen to any concerns our boarders may have. As the school does not have exeat weekends and is comprised almost entirely of full-time boarders, the weekends are always very lively on campus with sports activities, visits to Canterbury in the afternoon and movie nights.

There are a wide variety of trips for boarders throughout the year from ice skating at the Natural History Museum to paintballing or theatre trips. There is also a very popular Brunch option available at weekends enabling students to have a relaxed social gathering over a meal in the morning. Sixth Form students take on additional responsibility in the Boarding Houses as Head of House and Assistant Head of House, welcoming new students and helping them to settle in. Year 12 and Year 13 students are encouraged to grow their independence during their last 2 years at school in preparation for university and can take cooking classes alongside, learning how to manage day to day household requirements.

Preparing for the Future

Aristotle once said that “knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom” and this is fundamental to the direction of Key Skills. The Key Skills programme of study is a compulsory and vital part of the sixth form timetable here at Kent College: its primary aim is to develop the whole student and the recognition of their own value to a wider world

Aspects covered combine within the three main topics of life, health and work. Trying to find the correct balance could be a life’s work but with strong foundations in a supportive environment that balance could fast become habit. The breadth of area covered can range from gap year planning to student finance, international study and interview technique, but with an overarching emphasis on student wellbeing and self-awareness

Developing resilience

Students are encouraged to become more reflective about the challenges which they have already overcome and the potential that they have to overcome those that may lay ahead. Drawing from the wisdom of a wide range of teaching staff’s own life experience and the shared insight from visiting parties, such as Positively Mad and Dr Bettina Hohnen, students begin to see the importance of continued learning beyond the classroom.

"Pupils are recognised as individuals and all staff take pride in encouraging and supporting each one to achieve his or her best. The pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is excellent"

- ISI Inspection


Post Kent College planning plays a big part of the Key Skills programme and students are carefully guided through the varying options and opportunities available to them. As part of the Year 13 Key Skills programme, students are allocated a teacher to help with their UCAS and overseas universities application. This process is overseen by the Head of Sixth Form. Personal statement and CV writing skills are developed and a visit to the annual University and Apprenticeship Fair helps students to start planning their future pathways. Throughout the course of the year, we have visiting speakers from a range of British universities, advice on the USA application and scholarship process, the Armed Forces recruitment process and GAP year presentations and volunteering opportunities from well established companies in the industry.

Outreach in the Community

Our students understand their responsibility to give back to the community and are eager to begin making their impact on the world. Our incredibly active Charity Committee arranges events such as themed non-uniform days, charity walks, cake sales, and pancake day events to raise money for multiple charities throughout the year; recent charities selected include CALM and Ambitious about Autism.

Alongside fundraising, students find an array of ways to get involved. Conservation Club volunteers their time maintaining and caring for the local Blean woods, protecting the environment and beautifying a community space, others volunteer in local primary schools to help with reading. Kent College has also developed a Global Schools partnership with schools and communities in southern Tanzania, and students and staff have travelled in recent years to help develop and equip their partner schools and, most recently, to help create a well to provide much-needed fresh water to a rural village.

The Next Step

Deciding what to study and where to attend university may at first seem daunting, but our students need not feel alone! Support is provided along the journey. All Sixth Form students partake in our Key Skills programme, which is aimed at preparing them for the future. A member of staff guides students through the university application process. They are encouraged to examine their strengths and interests and advised on possible career paths, choosing the right university course and writing their personal statement.

University applications and career guidance

Students also have access to the online Unifrog platform, where they can explore UCAS, as well as universities in the USA, Europe, Asia and Australia, alongside the many apprenticeships on offer. Students can use Unifrog to research specific careers, from astronaut to zoologist, as well as those based on their general interests, like art or technology.

Further inspiration and information may be gained through a variety of other opportunities, including relevant summer schools and subjectspecific days, as well as University, Career and Apprenticeship fairs. Kent College hosts visiting lecturers who discuss pursuing specific careers, such as medicine, law and veterinary science, alongside an array of relevant topics, including: gap year opportunities, USA scholarships, and a personal statement writing workshop. For students aiming for Oxford or Cambridge, we plan visits to the universities, meeting both admissions tutors and Kent College alumni, and individual support is provided during the application process.

We know that the future is rapidly changing, and the careers our students will have may not yet exist--this is why we are so passionate about delivering an individualised education to each of our students. With bespoke timetables, academic clinics with one-on-one support, a variety of leadership and outreach opportunities, and the plethora of extracurricular activities on offer--we want to ensure each student has developed their own unique set of skills and strengths to succeed in the future ahead as well-rounded, global citizens

Destinations

Destinations for our leavers include many top universities in the UK and further afield; over 47% of our students attend Russell Group universities, and international destinations have included Bocconi, Boston University, Madrid and Melbourne University. Our students are encouraged to consider the pathway that suits them best, whether that be direct entrance into university, a gap year spent working or exploring, or an apprenticeship in their desired field. Kent College aims to ensure that every student sets off on the path to the future that is right for them.



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