Sixth Form College Reunion and Awards Evening

January 2012

On 5th January Charter Hall was filled to capacity with former students and their families, who joined staff and governors at the Sixth Form College Annual Reunion & Awards Evening, held to celebrate the outstanding success of the students who left us in June 2011.

In his speech, College Principal Ian MacNaughton congratulated students:

"The examination successes you achieved in the summer were quite outstanding -by both local and national standards. The average 'value added' results you achieved - the comparison between your GCSE results on entry and your package of results on leaving, places your collective successes very significantly above the national average levels.

Our International Baccalaureate students achieved an outstanding level of success. Your average results of 32 IB points were well above both the national and international averages.

Well over 1000 of our second year College students entered for A Level examinations last summer and the average results you achieved were really excellent with average results ahead of the achievements of students at all other colleges in Essex and Suffolk and in all the Essex comprehensive schools with sixth forms.

The top 100 academic achievers amongst you obtained an average UCAS point score equivalent to our 2 A*s and 2 A grades at A Level. We understand that this is a higher score than the top 100 students in any school in the country, including in all selective grammar and independent schools.

Substantial numbers of last year's leavers successfully attained the grades necessary to progress to degree courses, including large numbers progressing to some of the very most competitive degree course areas. Indeed approximately 1000 of last year's leavers have, or will next autumn, after a GAP year, progress to a wide range of exciting and challenging degree courses, or other opportunities in the UK or elsewhere in the world. Your levels of academic achievement were outstanding. Very well done to you.

We are also recognising achievements and contributions made in the fields of sport, music, drama, dance, the creative arts, science, technology and in business and we are also paying tribute to your contributions to the College community and to the wider community in the Colchester area, particularly to those less fortunate than ourselves.

You as a group made a fantastic contribution to the wider community, including putting together generous Christmas hampers for the needy, raising money on a weekly basis for the Good Foundation, organising Christmas pantomime trips for underprivileged children, theme days throughout the year to raise funds for local, national and international charities, individual action to help elderly and disabled people, support for the oppressed through Amnesty International and in undertaking challenges in local and international community work. Your positive attitudes and contributions to help others were quite outstanding.

A number of our students who left last year are now involved in international community placements including through GAP projects, and, indeed, some of you were involved in major community projects in India while you were at College. These experiences not only offered you considerable scope for personal development and enjoyment; they also offered a considerable amount to the communities that you helped.

Many of you excelled in performing arts and cultural activities in the College during the time you spent with us. Dance, music and drama flourished and there were a whole series of outstanding productions, concerts and performances over the 2 years you were with us. Excellent Art and Photography exhibitions and displays illustrated the significant student talents in the Visual Arts and many of you gained excellent practical experience in the field of media including those actively involved in production and broadcasting on the College Radio Station.

More than 300 of you represented the College in competitive sports fixtures in a wide range of different sports and over forty students represented their County or were selected for regional, national or international level competitions. An excellent Sport Awards Evening was held in May and the range of individual and team successes recognised that evening were very impressive.

You, our former students, have helped the College maintain its position as one of the premier colleges in the country in terms of the quality of its examination results, the range of activities taking place and your wider experiences and student achievements. If you make the same level of contribution to the worlds of higher education, community and employment that you made while you studied at College, then you will make a very positive and favourable impact and can make a real contribution to the future betterment of society, as well as achieving excellent opportunities for yourselves. The best advertisement for the Sixth Form College has always been its students. You were and still are excellent ambassadors for the College and we are extremely proud of you".

Key for photo:
L-R (Back)
Megan Kemp Departmental Award for IB Geography and College Award for Academic Achievement
Charis Holmes Holbrook High School Award for Academic Achievement
Matthew Farthing The Gilberd School Award for Academic Achievement in Sixth Form Study
Jack Tooze College Award for Academic Achievement in IB
Bryony Goodwin St Mary's School Award for Academic Achievement in Sixth Form Study
Loyd Steward Departmental Award for Chemistry and College Award for Academic Achievement

L-R (Front)
Bronya Meredith College Award for Academic Achievement
Yasmine Permaul Essex County Standard Award for Communications
Sarah Ayton Colchester Hospital University Foundation NHS Trust Award for Personal Achievement
Thomas Imber College Award for Academic Achievement, Department Award for English Literature and Departmental Award for History
Josh Overton College Shakespeare Award

Outstanding A Level Results

August 2011

The group of over 1300 upper sixth students who sat their A Levels this summer achieved a pass rate in subjects of over 98.5% and an A* - B 'very high grade' rate of 51%. The final overall average Government measured sixth form 'point score' per upper sixth student at the College is approximately 5% 'up' at 960 'QCA points' - a score which is equivalent to grades A*AA at A Level together with a further grade B at AS Level. This will be over 20% higher than the national average QCA points score for all categories of school and college. The results mean the Sixth Form College cohort of students have again achieved an outstanding value-added score when A Level results are related to the GCSE results achieved by students at age 16.

All students passed in 32 of the A Level subjects including the subject areas of: Art, Computing, English Language and Literature, Further Mathematics, French, German, Geography, History, Music, Politics and Spanish. In July, the 73 upper sixth students who studied for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma were also awarded excellent results and the overall results achieved by the summer 2011 cohort of upper sixth students are therefore described by Ian MacNaughton, the College Principal as "our best ever. The students' achievements are really outstanding'. The results achieved are once again likely to place the results of students at the College at the top of the Eastern Counties (Essex, Suffolk, Norfolk) College A Level results 'league table' for the 2010-11 year which will be published by the DfE in the Winter.

The average Government measured point score of the College's top 100 upper sixth students is equivalent to grades A* A* A A at A Level and these 'top end' results, it is understood, will for the fifteenth consecutive year, exceed the results of the top 100 students in any of the selective grammar or independent schools in the country.

Well over 1000 of the upper sixth students from The Sixth Form College have now obtained the necessary qualifications to be able to proceed onto university degree courses including over 400 students who have now achieved offers for places on prestige degree courses including Medicine, Veterinary Science, Dentistry, Engineering, Maths, Economics, Architecture, Law, English and History or have achieved places at Oxford or Cambridge or Russell Group Universities or Medical Schools or for other 'top' universities or courses. All the A Level students holding Oxbridge offers achieved the offers that had been made to them.

Some of the particularly notable academic successes include:

Bryony Goodwin from Brightlingsea, formerly a student at St. Mary's School who achieved 5 A* grades in A Level English Literature, History, Politics, Psychology and an Extended project Qualification (EPQ). Bryony will now study English at Trinity Hall College, Cambridge.

Lewis Evans from Manningtree, formerly a student at East Bergholt High School achieved 4 A* grades at A Level in English Literature, French, History and Politics and also an A grade in EPQ. Lewis will now study History at Keble College, Oxford.

Barney Graham from Brightlingsea formerly a student at Colne Community School, achieved 4 A* grades at A Level in Maths, English Literature, Economics and Critical Thinking and also an A grade in Further Maths. Barney will now study Economics at the London School of Economics.

Thomas Imber from Sible Hedingham, formerly a pupil at St. Benedict's College achieved 4 A* grades in A Level History, German, English Literature and also in an Extended Project Qualification. He also achieved A grades in A Level Latin and Classical Civilisation. Tom will now study Anglo, Saxon, Norse and Celtic at Peterhouse College, Cambridge.

Twenty students have now successfully achieved the grades to study Medicine or related degree's; including Charis Holmes from Holbrook who achieved A* grades in A Level Biology, Chemistry and Environmental Science, as well as an A in Italian. Charis will study Veterinary Medicine at the Royal Veterinary College.

Top Score for IB Student

May 2011

A Colchester Sixth Form College student is celebrating after achieving the top score 42 points for her International Baccalaureate. Megan Kemp, who went to Thurstable School before college, is now looking forward to taking up her place at Oxford University to read Geography. Megan is not alone in her celebrations however, as an impressive five Sixth Form College students from a single year group all achieved scores of over 40, placing them in the top 2% of students, not just in the country, but across the world.

As College principal Ian MacNaughton explained: "We are delighted with another strong set of International Baccalaureate results, not just at the top end, but across the board. Our students have achieved an average score of over 32 points, which is well above the international average. Once again they have shown that this an excellent course for students from a range of GCSE backgrounds who are looking for an alternative to the traditional A-Level route through to university or employment". Megan also managed to put her celebrations aside for a moment to explain to us just why she had chosen the International Baccalaureate course:

"I think we are in a time when it pays to be different, when universities are receiving thousands of identical applications from equally gifted students; the IB allowed my peers and I to stand out and be more noticeable. The International in International Baccalaureate is definitely never forgotten in this course. The exposure to different countries through all subjects, not just languages, has widened my understanding of the world, probably more than jumping on a plane to visit the country on holiday. Also there is something special about studying the same topics as someone in Japan, India or America, despite all the cultural differences you are linked through what you are learning, something I never forgot during my two years at College".