Post 16 options, guidance and links to local post 16 providers

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Information and Guidance relating to post 16 pathways, levels of qualifications etc. (Gatsby benchmarks 2, 3, 8)

Our Year 11s have more choice than ever in relation to their Post 16 options, and will receive support to help them understand what they involve via Values and careers lessons/meetings.  Below is a guide to the options available to students, which I hope will inform parents/carers also.

College:  Offer mainly vocational qualifications, meaning they are in effect training a student in a particular career area, or trade.  Courses range from motor vehicle, through to animal care, and usually last one year or two years.  Level 1 and 2 courses are one year, whilst level 3 courses last two years.  Colleges are able to offer a suitable course for the academic level a school leaver is working at, and are inclusive. Students can apply to more than one college at a time to keep their options open.  Here are the links to the local colleges.  Please try to visit the open days/evenings before they decide where to apply.  As a rough guide, we encourage our year 11’s to apply to colleges before Christmas of year 11, but later applications are also accepted, based on course availability etc.  

Burton and South Derbyshire College - Burton and South Derbyshire College

SMB Group (Coalville, Melton Mowbray and Brooksby College) - SMB College Group

Loughborough College - Loughborough College

Derby College - Derby College


6th Form:  6th form is Years 12/13 in either a school, a standalone 6th form, and also at some local colleges. Most students study A Levels (Advanced levels). These qualifications are at level 3, with GCSE grades 9-4 being level 2. Students usually study up to four academic subjects, normally ones that they need to pursue a career or university course. 6th form study is aimed at students who are likely to achieve grades 9-4 at GCSE. Most 6th forms require students to have a minimum of 5 GCSE grades at grades 9-4. For specific A levels, 6th forms can ask for a specific GCSE grade, e.g. a grade 6 or above in Science is required to study Biology at A level.  

Here are the links to our local 6th forms, where you will find information on their open days and course offers. Please look on their websites for closing dates for applications, as these tend to be in November or December.

The Pingle Academy - Welcome - The Pingle Academy

The de Ferrers 6th form (Burton upon Trent) - Welcome - The de Ferrers Academy

Ashby School 6th form - Introduction to Sixth Form | Ashby School - A Successful 14 - 19 Academy

Abbot Beyne 6th form - (Winshill, Burton upon Trent) - Welcome to Abbot Beyne Sixth Form

Paulet High School 6th form (Burton upon Trent) - Courses – Paulet High School & 6th Form College


Employment:  School leavers can go into employment when they officially leave Year 11 (1st July or after), but the government expects them to remain in some form of education or training, which is accredited. This could be a GCSE evening course, or training specific to the job they progress onto.  Further information is in the link below.

Participation of young people in education, employment or training -

Should your child wish to go straight into employment, please contact the Careers Lead, Mr. Lambeth, so support can be given whilst they are in Year 11. A referral can be made to a local provider, who supports young people into work, should they leave us without a job offer.

Higher Education:  Meaning University, or level 4 and above study, higher education (HE) is available to all, providing they have the required qualifications. Qualifications accepted by universities are generally at level 3, e.g. A Levels or a BTEC level 3 qualification from a college, or level 3 apprenticeship.  

Although, we do not have a 6th form at Granville Academy, we always make our students aware of University education that many of them can access, if they wish.  Through our careers education programme, and through our October Careers Fair, we aim to expose our students to this pathway.  Parents can access this resource as a starting point, should they wish to explore this option with their child.  This can be a useful activity in Year 11 especially, when our students are considering 6th forms or a level 3 course at college -