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Sixth Form News - September

Welcome to our new Year 12 students and welcome back to our Year 13! We have lots of exciting news to share with you all and some upcoming events to make a note of. For new parents my name is Charlotte Kennedy and I am the Head of Sixth Form at GPUTC. I lead a team of mentors to manage the welfare, achievement and progress of KS5 students.

What we have been up to?

It has been an action packed start to the first term with various different trips and visits. In their first week Year 12 took a trip out to Perkins Engines. This was an excellent trip to see Factory 1 and the research / development building. All students were able to gain a good understanding of the facilities and in particular apply their theoretical knowledge to the 'real world'. This was very evident in the research area where an engineer spent some time explaining thermal dynamics to the students showing graphs and explaining the results. All guides were enthusiastic and more than willing to answer questions which really helped put students at ease and encouraged them to ask more questions. Perkins commented on how fantastic our students were and this was seen to be a great networking opportunity so early on in the term.

Enrichment Fair

GPUTC’s first ever Enrichment Fair was a great success! All students were exposed to various different tasks and activities, situated at different stalls. Students then had the opportunity to sign up to the clubs that most interested them. Some of the clubs include, but are not limited to: Raspberry Pi, workshop skills, gym sessions, DofE, Library lounge, Bee keeping, Football, CNC/3D printing, school magazine, Royal Navy challenge, Field Gun, careers workshop, coding, art, Perkins led challenge, technical drawing, Sea Cadets and Duke of York award.

If you would like more information on these clubs and how to take part please contact Lesley Goodfellow.

This was an invaluable experience as our students also had the chance to network with some of our sponsors and learn more about the opportunities available to them beyond Sixth Form.

Y12 Innovate East Event - 10 Sept 19

On the 10th of September our Year 12 students were honoured to be invited to the Innovate East Challenge, organised by our fantastic Sponsors Anglian Water.

Despite a rather late invitation due to a number of external factors, we were absolutely delighted with the flexibility both our learners and families showed, and we were able to gather over 50 students, allowing an entire exercise to be scheduled just for them!

At an impressive site called Trinity Park (near to Ispwich), the events took place in a number of gigantic inflatable tents, which included an Innovation Tent where our students witnessed some cutting-edge technological advances by a number of organisations supporting the event. We then went on to hear some inspiring talks regarding the efforts made for water conservation, the challenges which are faced as well as potential future strategies.

Then, on to the main event...

Our students were given a scenario where they had to design a full water-preservation solution for a fictional town. Divided in to teams, they were supported with industry exports to discuss and devise a design, financially cost it and evaluate its impact before presenting on the grand stage to the entire audience!

Our students performed like the true young professionals they are, with extremely well considered ideas, effective teamwork and collaboration. They confidently delivered in an extremely daunting arena! We were incredibly proud of all that attended this trip and we are delighted to inform you that the winning team (which made such a positive impression on the panel), have been invited to re-present their presentation to the Cambridgeshire Councillors! Great work.

Duke of York Gold Award

At the start of term Mrs McKinnon and I had the fantastic experience of supporting and congratulating two of our previous Year 13 students when they received their Duke of York Gold Award at St James’s Palace. James and Tom were presented their awards by Prince Andrew after meeting a strict set of criteria. Successful students had to complete two weeks of work experience, undertake a tough interview process (whilst being filmed), achieve good grades in technical qualifications and complete two projects with employer partners.

James finished the year with a double distinction* in Engineering (the highest possible grade) and went on to his chosen University course studying Aerospace Technology with Pilot Studies. Tom went onto an apprenticeship studying Cyber Security for the International Embassies within the UK.

Unfortunately we were limited on the number of photos we were allowed to take inside the palace.

Stars so far…

It has been very difficult for us to select which Sixth Form students have impressed us so far as there are almost too many to mention. All of you would have logged praise points and there will be more information to come on how your points will make prizes!
But for the now the stars so far are:

  • The Year 12 Biology group, who completed biological drawings from microscopic slides. Mrs Hancock said that these were by far the best she had seen, with some as high as degree level quality.
  • ”I must say that the majority of KS5 this year have really impressed me. Having taken the Y12s to the AW Convention; their professionalism, attitude and effort levels were truly outstanding.
    Toni excelled in the team project, showing a clear ability to lead and motivate a team. She presented very confidently and very well.
    Nick Lincoln - An excellent presentation and great ambassador for the UTC.
    Ethan - Worked tirelessly throughout the session and came across as the utmost professional young person.
  • Dan Asher, Ben Wade, Amy Szalajko & Eleanor Dean have continued to impress with their aura of excellence and dedication so far.” from Steve Coleby
  • Product Design- O'cean produced an incredible presentation, expertly delivered and full of detail clearly displaying an impressive aptitude and ability to learn complex facts and systems quickly.
  • We thoroughly applaud the work ethic of Zain Shah during independent study time, it hasn’t gone unnoticed!
  • Laura’s year 13 BTEC Engineering class have maintained 100% attendance so far, well done keep it up!
  • All four students in A Level Art have made a good start. But I wanted to mention Toni, who has joined the enrichment in particular! She is a pleasure to have and an absolutely amazing artist!”
  • English- “Paulina has been working really hard in English so far. She’s completed her assigned tasks well ahead of time and has been reflective about how to progress.
  • English- I’ve also seen a renewed and concerted effort from Itty and Zain.
  • English- Ami is already coming up with ideas on how to promote reading across the school, and I am constantly catching her studying. She is already making plans for law school, and being proactive in seeking support with her personal statement.
  • Alex Briggs is another very impressive young man. We recently had a deeply insightful political discussion in which he expressed his views articulately and with nuance.”
  • Michal Skwarski has an excellent work ethic in A2 Physics. He was first to complete independent study assignments. His experimental value of latent heat of fusion for water was the nearest to data book value – well done Michal! Becky McKinnon.


Mentoring and Development

Students have now settled into their mentoring sessions each morning and are completing a range of tasks in the format below.

Monday- Individual MOOC course
Tuesday- KS5 Assembly
Wednesday- Current Affairs
Thursday- Whole school ‘drop everything and read’ (DEAR)
Friday- Knowledge skills and behaviour (career guidance)

If you would like any more information on this please contact your child’s mentor.

Don’t take our word for it, what have our Year 12 students said?

It has been fantastic getting to know all of our Year 12 students and I know that I can speak for all staff when I say that we have been truly impressed by their enthusiasm and work ethic from the first day! When asked about their experiences so far, here is what our new students had to say:

“I like the sixth form study space and the smart clothes for all years. The class sizes are smaller than my previous school which has really helped me focus.” Amy S

“The study periods have given me time to improve my work and the lessons have lots of activities in the hour. The optional enrichments are nicer to learn new things as well as things that people are interested in.” Daisy C

“Over the past few weeks I have enjoyed doing new and different subjects like Built Environment, learning new skills and being able to use what I already know. It is great to have study periods to go over what I have previously learned and to be able to make new friends whilst working.” Ollie R

“The lessons are amazingly planned and very fun. The study periods make everything easier. There are more plans for subjects than my last two years.” Katy M

“Staff members are friendly. Over the past three weeks I’ve experienced new opportunities that I wouldn’t have at my old school. I also enjoy having the Built Environment as a subject because it will help me with my future career.” Krystall R

“I love being around other people who have the same interests as me. I really enjoy the independence that they allow us, the teachers are very one on one and are great.” George R

Important contacts in KS5

Year 12 Mentors
Kris Edwards (overseeing Level 2 program)-
Karen Hancock-
Mark Jarrett-
Lee Hemming-

Year 13 Mentors
Marcus Loosemore-
Emma Hollywood-
Adrian Korban-

Important dates

  • October 15th Oxbridge applications to be submitted
  • October 17th Year 12 Mentor evening
  • December 16th Internal deadline for UCAS applications and personal statements
  • December 20th Reports to go home
  • January 6th-10th Year 13 Mocks
  • January 15th Final external deadline for UCAS applications to be submitted
  • January 6th-10th Year 13 Mocks
  • January 23rd Year 13 Parents evening