Year 12 Update

Three female Leigh Academy students sitting at a table, working together.

Dear Parents/Carers,

Year 12 students are now one third of their way through their Post-16 journey and the end of Module 4 is teachers’ first opportunity to make predictions of the grades students are on track to achieve at the end of each course they study. These can be viewed via your MyChildAtSchool account. On the back of these predictions, we will focus assemblies and tutor time activities throughout Module 5 on Post-18 options and begin actively working with Year 12 students to help them to decide and prepare for whichever pathway they wish to pursue at the end of Year 13. As you already know, we will also be taking all Year 12 students to a Post-18 Options event at The University of Kent on Wednesday 26th April, where they will be able to engage directly with hundreds of universities, apprenticeship providers and employers. From Module 5 onward, students in Year 12 will become very focused on the end of their time with us.

We want all Year 12 students to aim as high as they can and achieve the highest grades of which they are capable, so we have decided to make a change to how we operate our Post-16 provision from Module 6 (after the May half term holiday). From Monday 5th June onward, we are going to expect all Year 12 students to be on site from 8.30am till 1.30pm on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Students will not be allowed off site in break times. When students are not in a timetabled lesson, we will require them to be studying in Attenborough College. The only exception to this will be those students who have to attend the academy for lessons on Wednesday, who will have four hours of time in which they are allowed to not be on site allocated at other times of the week. We will then review student reports regularly in particularly Attitude & Engagement Score (AES), to measure progress and will adapt timetables and directed study as needed through Year 13.

We are delighted that in the post pandemic era and with our excellent up-dated Attenborough College facilities for Post-16 students, that we are once again able to offer the facilities and resources for all Post-16 to learn, study, revise and work colloboratively on site in their study periods.

We recognise that some students will have to slightly amend the hours in which they can make themselves available for part-time work but we hope that students can appreciate the benefits of having directed study time on site in relation to increasing the number of hours they spend independently studying each week and improving their outcomes in final examinations. We continue to base the required independent study hours per subject on extensive research conducted by The University of Cambridge, which concluded that Post-16 students need to spend 7 hours per week per subject engaged in independent study in order to maximise their chances of gaining the highest grades of which they are capable. We believe that providing an additional 4 hours per week (for the average student taking three subjects) on site will make it easier for them to reach the goal of 21 hours of independent study per week. We also see great benefits to having students attend tutor time three times per week, with our College assembly each Friday, as form tutors will be writing students’ references for applications to university, apprenticeships and employment.

We hope you will be supportive of this slight change in operation and understand that our motivation is to ensure that our students achieve the best grades they can at the end of Year 13. However, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me via Mrs Howell, the Attenborough College Administrator: or 01322-620439.

Yours faithfully,

Mr Lee Forcella-Burton
Director of Post-16, leading Attenborough College