Friday 29th January
I would like to thank all our Parents / Carers and students for their participation in last week’s surveys. We have reflected on your comments and we hope that you have found us responsive in addressing any points that you may have raised that will ensure that the learning experience is good for your son / daughter.
Here is an overview of the results of the survey:
99% of parents are happy with communication being clear about how remote learning is accessed
95% of parents are happy that Personal Wellbeing support has been accessible when needed or available if required
99% of students are either fully engaged (83%) or partially engaged (16%)
89% of parents believe teaching has been excellent
Although we are very pleased with how most of the lessons are being delivered and engaged in, we all know there is no substitute for face to face lessons. This along with another period of isolation at home is having an impact on student wellbeing – including creating a lot of anxiety for some. The pastoral team will have been in touch to help identify further support we can offer for those that have reached out to let us know.
Unsurprisingly, families are facing greater pressure on their broadband as more families are now working at home. The Government IT support schemes have now extended to college students and we have been able to distribute SIM cards to students to help improve their access.
We now know that we will not return until March 8th at the earliest, and although that is disappointing, we want every family and every student to know we are here to support in any way we can. The college remains open to receive emails and telephone calls to maintain contact and to be able to stay in touch if you need us. No issue is too small, so please let us know if you think we can do anything else to help.
Wishing you all a restful weekend,
Pastoral Updates – Rebecca Anderson
I was really pleased that this week I was messaged with a number of questions from students, which had actually already been answered in the previous weeks’ Life Skills sessions on Wellbeing and on Next Steps – this shows that our Life Skills programme is covering information that students need and want. It does also show that not all students are engaging with the material – so tutors are working hard to encourage all students to stay connected online. We are making some small changes to our messaging, to help students follow the stream in the Information Classroom. It is really important that students have their notifications on – we only post high quality, relevant material – they should make a habit of scrolling back every Monday to check they haven’t missed anything. No one ever regrets being really well informed.
All S6C lessons are live, but Life Skills material is posted every Wednesday, for both year groups to look at, usually with a small task so they have to get their head around it and we can follow up. This week we are running a live tutor session so students can catch up in virtual breakout rooms and chat about how their lockdown is going. We are suggesting they share tips for relaxation and unwinding – books, films, tv, games, apps, free courses and activities, exercise programmes etc – and that they look at this excellent guide for young people about managing lockdown. Some will be flying and others really struggling – or experiencing a bit of both – as will their families, along with staff, and the rest of our communities. This resource contains some excellent advice for lots of different possible feelings about lockdown – we are all in this together so do take a look yourselves and pass the link on to anyone that may find it helpful. https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/for-children-and-young-people/coronavirus/managing-feelings-about-changes-to-lockdown/
As ever, if students are struggling, or are concerned about a friend, they should get in touch with their tutor or myself, as the pastoral lead. We can offer support for emotional, mental and physical wellbeing, financial concerns, help with managing stress/identity/emotions/confidence, study skills support, eating, sleep, drugs & alcohol, consent, online safety – all sorts of things – either through 1:1 chats, resource sharing, self help sessions, or referrals to our amazing counsellors, the early intervention mental health team, Camhs, or a variety of specialist services. It’s good to talk.
Psychology students were invited to attend an optional day-long seminar on ‘ – Kirsty White, Faculty Lead for STEM
Psychology students were invited to attend an optional day-long seminar on ‘Your Future in Psychology’, hosted by the British Psychological Society (BPS). The day included webinars from specialists in numerous fields in Psychology. A number of Year 12 and Year 13 students attended and found the day to be exciting and insightful. Year 13 student Hannah Coleman, who has applied to study Psychology at university, has written the following review: After attending the BPS ‘Your Future in Psychology’ webinar, I am genuinely inspired by the passion of the members of the BPS. As I am studying A level Psychology, and planning to go to University to study a degree in Psychology, I thought after Kirsty mentioned this event, it would be a good idea to attend, and it certainly did not disappoint! The day involved several different talks from experts in the field of Psychology, as well as a talk about transitioning to degree level and a Q&A session at the end of the day. Each of the speakers gave insightful talks about topics they are involved in, such as Dr Robert A. Nash’s talk about why false memories stick around, linking nicely with the topic of Memory in Paper 1. Professor Matt Field spoke about addiction, which I am looking forward to studying later in upper sixth, as well as Professor Veena Kumari’s talk about Schizophrenia, and myths that schizophrenics are aggressive, but in fact, much of their behaviour is as a result of feeling threatened. Dr Nikhil Sengupta spoke about large scale panel studies of the Psychology of inequality, how we perceive our communities to be equal, and how this has an effect on our self esteem. Overall, the event gave me some great insight into Psychology at a degree level, and I cannot wait to be part of the BPS community! I would definitely recommend this event to those of you who are interested in Psychology post college, a really interesting and thought provoking event, likely to get you even more excited about studying Psychology!
Students continue to collaborate with peers and teachers – Rich Eno, Faculty Lead for Creative
Staff have been producing many interactive and engaging lessons during the current lockdown. Our Art and Photography teacher, Laurence Rushby, has produced some exciting lessons where students are busy making a variety of art based pieces whilst at home. In addition, we’ve all been using a wide range of Google Education apps to ensure our lessons are engaging. For example, many of our staff use a Google Jamboard where students share ideas in a visual manner. The larger image of the Jamboard is a dialogue of feedback of what students have completed in self directed study since their last lesson.
BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business – Steve Price – Teacher of Business and Sally Tye Humanities Faculty Lead
S6C began delivering the newly reformed BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in September 2019. Equivalent of 3 A Levels, it is often seen as a route to apprenticeship and employment. However Thirteen of the cohort of fifteen have made applications for University places, all have offers, one of them unconditional. Amongst them we have three students with offers from Cardiff and Exeter, Russell Group Universities. All have offers from universities with strong reputations for business, including Portsmouth, Royal Holloway, UWE, Winchester and Bournemouth.
The BTEC Business Level 3 Extended Diploma has offered our students a new pathway and opportunity to achieve, whether at college or learning through the medium of ‘live’ online lessons. As we see the arguments of the impact of the Covid 19 pandemic on what is defined as ‘a lost generation’ played out in the national media, we would argue that S6C students are special. Despite the significant challenge and disruption the education system and S6C have faced, as with all our students, the Year 13 BTEC cohort have shown real resilience, desire and drive to achieve. We are immensely proud of their efforts, aspirations and quality of work achieved so far and we feel it is fitting to highlight to our community how well they are doing.
Careers Update – Rosie Roberts – Student Liaison and Publicity Officer
- On the 3rd & 4th Feb 2021 there is an online apprenticeships fair bringing together employers for Year 12 & 13 students and parents to discuss why apprenticeships are a great alternative to going to university. We’d encourage all students to attend if there are sessions that don’t clash with your online lessons. Register here: https://pages.ratemyapprenticeship.co.uk/virtual-event-buzz/?dm_i=30Z2,149CI,81B5BN,4B2WK,1
- Local apprenticeship vacancies that Year 13 students may be interested in are being uploaded in the Google Information Classroom. Go to the Classwork tab at the top of the page > Careers > Apprenticeships Vacancies.
- New Virtual Work Experience opportunities have been added in the Google Information Classroom in Classwork > Careers > Work Experience.
- There are a range of live online careers talks on offer every week and links to these are being posted every Monday in the Google Information Classroom message stream.
We would like to get in touch with S6C alumni to be able to share their career journeys since leaving S6C with our current students. If you know someone who studied at S6C who would like to update us on what they’re doing now please ask them to email Rosie: firstname.lastname@example.org This month we are particularly looking for Alumni who have completed or who are completing apprenticeships ahead of Apprenticeship week 8-14 February 2021 and also female Alumni who are studying or employed in a Science area or a STEM related field ahead of International Day of Women and Girls in Science on 11 February 2021.
If you would like to read last week’s update, click here: Weekly College Update 22nd January