Why the Sixth Form at Westcliff High School for Boys?
Westcliff is a selective rather than an open-access Sixth Form. It brings together those who have an aptitude for academic work and a high level of commitment and motivation. We offer teaching in relatively small groups by experienced and highly qualified staff, with splendid facilities for private study in both the Library and the Sixth Form Centre and for recreation in the Sixth Form Forum and Cafe. The Sixth Form Centre also features a number of rooms specially designed for Sixth Form seminar teaching.
Westcliff offers you the freedom you need to develop as an individual as well as the advice, guidance and monitoring of academic progress which can make an important contribution to Sixth Form success. We have an enviable record in assisting students with the transition from GCSE to Advanced Level. This is important because the Sixth Form course is relatively short and to be in an environment with which you are comfortable ought to ease the problem of adjustment to the new demands.
We offer an advisory service, including a good deal of individual counselling, on careers and Higher Education as well as a range of activities and opportunities to broaden your interests. We also offer both responsibility and the opportunity to participate in the corporate life of the School; both ought to contribute to your personal development.
What qualifications are needed?
Entry into the Sixth Form involves meeting a general entry requirement and, in some cases, specific subject requirements.
The minimum entry requirement for entry into the Sixth is 52 points and a grade 5 pass in Mathematics and English Language. Points are calculated using a student's eight best results. For GCSE qualifications, the number of points is equal to the grade, so a Grade 8 is worth 8 points. For Level 2 qualifications such as Further Mathematics, an A* is worth 8.5 points, an A is worth 7.0 points, a B is worth 5.5 points, with C, D and E grades worth 4, 3 and 2 points respectively. For BTEC style qualifications, a starred distinction is worth 8.5 points, a regular distinction is worth 7.0 points with a merit being worth 5.5 and a pass being worth 4.0 points.
For the purposes of calculation, two short course subjects count as one full course equivalent. Hence, seven full course and two short course results count as eight complete subjects.
The minimum entry requirement has been pitched at 52 points because experience suggests that anything less does not constitute an adequate platform from which to embark on Advanced Level study. In practice, of course, most students will exceed the entrance requirement by a considerable margin. Students may choose three or four A Level courses, and will follow these for two years before sitting A Level examinations. Westcliff High School for Boys does not enter Year 12 students for AS examinations at the end of Year 12, but uses a rigorous Internal Examination to gauge progress at the end of the year. We advise most students to begin four A Level courses to allow for greater flexibility as their interests and futures become more clear.
Students should also note that meeting the minimum entrance requirement and satisfying specific subject requirements will not by themselves guarantee entry to the Sixth. We have 180 places in the Lower Sixth for September 2020 and those will be allocated both to those presently in Year 11 at WHSB and to those seeking entry from outside without favour to either category. Should we have more candidates who have satisfied the minimum entrance threshold than we have places available, places will be awarded to candidates with the strongest GCSE profile taking into consideration as well a student’s performance in the subjects he or she wishes to study. Sixth Form places will be confirmed only in the light of the GCSE results published in August.
Parents and prospective students are advised that only in exceptional circumstances will there be any question of waiving either the general or the specific subject requirements for entry into the Sixth Form.
Further information about the courses we offer is given here: Sixth Form Curriculum.
Applications to Join the Sixth Form
The date of our next open day for potential Sixth Form applicants and their families is listed on the Sixth Form page.
Applications to join the Sixth Form in September 2020 have now closed. There are usually a few places available on GCSE Results Day for students who have done well in their qualifications. Students and families are welcome to visit the school after 1.00pm on Results Day if they are interested in enquiring about the availability of such places.