Sixth Form is about so much more than A levels or vocational qualifications. It is the springboard to the future; a time of self-discovery and exploration. Choosing the right setting for these precious two years can seem daunting, writes Tudor Hall School Deputy Head Emma Bell.

In my experience, with over 20 years in a wide variety of educational settings, an outstanding sixth form is one where each young person is encouraged to be the very best version of themselves and where expert support is available to help them keep going when the challenge increases. It is through this journey of discovery that young people prepare themselves for the world.

You can tell a lot about a sixth form by meeting the leavers. Talking to Tudor Hall sixth formers this week, it is clear they have gained not only excellent results, but also employability skills and lifelong friendships, preparing them for their next steps to university or college and beyond that, for the rest of their lives. 

Banbury Cake:

A single-sex school means there are no gender stereotypes and with teaching blocks built around individual choices, girls study a range of subjects as varied as their ambitions. With individual programmes, there is no ‘typical’ Tudor Hall sixth former, however what unites them is a desire to do their very best and to make the most of all opportunities available to them. Whilst the girls do of course have dedicated common room spaces, you are more likely to find them on the tennis courts, in the library, mentoring a GCSE student, reading a bedtime story to the younger girls or volunteering at a local school or care home than watching the latest Netflix series – although I am reliably informed that there are plenty of opportunities for this as well.

Most Tudor Hall sixth formers will study for three A levels, often alongside the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) or perhaps an ab initio language such as Italian. For some, the chance to study four A levels provides a chance to demonstrate breadth as well as excellence, whilst others benefit from the opportunity to complement A levels with a Technical or Vocational qualification.

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Our professional training kitchen and expert teaching offers those interested in food, nutrition or hospitality the chance to train for the Leiths Introductory Certificate in Food and Wine alongside a Level 3 Extended Certificate in Cookery. The prestigious Leiths course is well regarded in the industry, and others benefit from their creations at key events over the course of the year.

With dedicated subject specialists, small teaching and tutor groups and a fantastic pastoral team around them, Tudor girls are well supported to reach for the stars and the A*.

Programmes for aspiring medics, dentists and vets as well as Oxbridge applicants run alongside a varied and dynamic careers programme. Unimpeded by the pandemic, the careers programme moved online, with the peerless ‘Old Tudorian’ alumnae network sharing their expertise and even work experience opportunities digitally.

It is no surprise therefore that leavers are inspired to follow a dazzling array of different pathways at leading universities and institutions around the world; from architecture to costume design, law to theoretical physics, philosophy to zoology and everything in between.

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The school motto, Habeo ut dem (I have that I may give), remains at the heart of the Tudor Hall sixth form. Many girls in the sixth form work towards their Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award and the Tudor Outreach and Enrichment programme is an integral part of each girl’s week.

Applications to take part in the Tudor in Three Continents (Ti3C) or South African Warriors programmes are highly competitive, and these experiences often begin an enduring relationship between Tudor Hall girls and those in need that extends well past the end of the trip.

The only way to really get to know Tudor Hall sixth form is to come and visit us and experience it for yourselves. We look forward to seeing you at an Open Day or just for a visit. Please visit www.tudorhallschool.com/admissions/open-day