Sixth Form Curriculum
The majority of courses offered in the Sixth Form are Level 3 courses (AS/A Level or Level 3 vocational courses). A breadth of knowledge and understanding is required for students to cope with the demands of all Level 3 courses. In addition, students need to possess the necessary literacy and numeracy skills that all Level 3 courses require for their content to be understood and applied.
For each AS/A level course, knowledge and understanding of their higher tier GCSE course content is assumed since this is being built upon at AS/A Level. To enrol on our AS/A Level courses or Level 3 vocational courses, the following Level 2 qualifications are required
- A minimum of 5 GCSEs, or equivalent, including English Language and Mathematics, at Grade C or above;
- GCSE grades A*, A or B are strongly recommended in the particular subjects students wish to take at AS/A Level; and
- Some AS/A Level subjects require specific GCSE subjects and grades prior to enrolment. Details are contained on the relevant subject page of the Sixth Form Prospectus.
Once in the Sixth Form
- Students with C grades in GCSE English Language and Mathematics are advised to resit these to achieve B grades or higher. This is to increase students’ chances of university entry. Most teacher training institutions require B grades in GCSE English Language and Mathematics and so do a number of other degree level courses;
- Progression from AS to A2 level will not be permitted if students are unable to achieve a D grade or higher at AS level;
- Level 3 Vocational students will not be permitted to progress from Year 12 to Year 13 unless a minimum number of credits are submitted and passed in Year 12. As the size of Level 3 Vocational courses varies, students will be advised in writing by the Subject Leader prior to starting the course of the minimum number credits required of them by the end of Year 12; and
- The grades that students achieve at AS level will normally be used for UCAS purposes to predict their overall A2 grade for university entry. Students should therefore endeavour to achieve their highest possible grade at AS level.
Students who successfully enrol into the Sixth Form may follow one of five Learning Programmes. These are designed to ensure that students achieve the required qualifications necessary to progress on their route to further/higher education and/or employment/Higher Apprenticeships. Maintained schools in Wales are required to “provide religious education for all registered pupils”. This also applies to post-16 students in schools. At Caldicot School, the Welsh Baccalaureate has been designed to include the promotion of spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of students at the school and in society. It has also been designed to prepare students for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life. In order to comply with statutory requirements, the school would require students who do not wish to follow the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma to attend alternative lessons that provide such education.
Year 12 Learning Programmes
In Year 12, students must follow at least 3 Level 3 courses to be enrolled. This means that they must choose at least 2 AS courses and the Welsh Baccalaureate to receive our minimum learning programme:
- 2 AS Level courses (or vocational equivalent) + Welsh Baccalaureate (Minimum Learning Programme)
- 3 AS Level courses (or vocational equivalent)
- 3 AS Level courses (or vocational equivalent) + Welsh Baccalaureate
- 4 AS Level courses (or vocational equivalent)
- 4 AS Level courses (or vocational equivalent) + Welsh Baccalaureate (Maximum Learning Programme)
Year 13 Learning Programmes
By the time students enter Year 13, they must still be following at least 3 Level 3 courses to continue to be enrolled. This means that they must continue with at least two subjects from AS into A2 and the Welsh Baccalaureate to receive our minimum learning programme:
- 2 A2 Level courses (or vocational equivalent) + Welsh Baccalaureate (Minimum Learning Programme)
- 3 A2 Level courses (or vocational equivalent)
- 3 A2 Level courses (or vocational equivalent) + Welsh Baccalaureate
- 4 A2 Level courses (or vocational equivalent)
- 4 A2 Level courses (or vocational equivalent) + Welsh Baccalaureate (Maximum Learning Programme)
The expectation is that most students in Year 12 would begin 3 or 4 AS courses and the Welsh Baccalaureate, and in Year 13 would complete 3 A2 courses and the Welsh Baccalaureate.
Types of qualification
Qualifications in Wales, England and Northern Ireland are grouped together in “Levels”. They range from Entry Level to Level 8. Sixth Forms offer qualifications predominantly at Level 3 and Higher Education institutions offer qualifications between Levels 4 and 8.
|Level||Examples of Qualifications|
|Entry||Awards, Certificates, and Diplomas at Entry Level|
|1||GCSEs grades D-G BTEC Awards, Certificates and Diplomas at Level 1 Cambridge National Awards at Level 1 Essential Skills at Level 1 Welsh Baccalaureate (Foundation Diploma)|
|2||GCSEs grades A*-CBTEC Awards, Certificates and Diplomas at Level 2 Cambridge National Awards at Level 2 Essential Skills at Level 2 Welsh Baccalaureate (Intermediate Diploma)|
|3||AS and A LevelsBTEC Nationals, Awards, Certificates and Diplomas at Level 3 Cambridge Technical Awards at Level 3 Essential Skills at Level 3 Welsh Baccalaureate (Advanced Diploma)|
The majority of courses offered in the Sixth Form are at Level 3. Since Entry Level, Level 1 and Level 2 qualifications are taught at Key Stage 4, students wishing to return to the Sixth Form should already be working towards achieving these qualifications by the end of Year 11. Only a limited number of Level 2 courses are available in the Sixth Form:
- Resit GCSE English Language
- Resit GCSE Mathematics
- GCSE and Vocational courses with Key Stage 4 classes (dependent upon availability)