Frequently Asked Questions

1. When is Abbeygate Sixth Form College opening?
We welcomed our first students in September 2019 at our sixth form based on the site of West Suffolk College, and will move to the newly built Abbeygate Sixth Form College in 2020, with new students starting there from September 2020.

2. Is there a deadline as to when I can apply?
There is no deadline, however we would urge you to apply early to secure your place and subject choices at Abbeygate.  Once you have done this you can concentrate on getting the best possible GCSE grades.  Applying is easy but if you have any problems please email or phone the admissions team on 01284 636501.

3. Will there be an interview?
You will have a 1:1 meeting with a senior member of Abbeygate staff to discuss your options, your future plans and aspirations and help you work out the best plan to help you achieve these.  The interview is nothing to worry about.  It is your opportunity to ask questions and seek advice and guidance to ensure you make an informed decision about your future.

4. What support will be available at Abbeygate SFC?
Abbeygate staff will support you every step of the way and we want to make sure there are no barriers stopping you from being the best you can be.  Every student will have a SAM (Student Achievement Mentor) who will support you with transition, progress and career choices and applications to HE, apprenticeships or employment.  Whatever issues you are facing, you can always talk to your SAM and they will help you or arrange for you to see the right person to support you.

5. I’m relocating to the area and am worried about moving to a new college, how will Abbeygate SFC  help me settle in?
One of the many benefits of going to a sixth form college is the opportunity to meet lots of new people from different schools.  Everyone will be new and you will be in classes with other people who are in exactly the same position as you.  Our teachers are incredibly friendly and supportive and you will have your own dedicated SAM who will help you settle in.   Abbeygate has an impressive choice of extra curricula activities and clubs for you to choose from.  These will help you meet students with similar interests to you.    

6. Where will I be taught
We have secured the use of outstanding facilities at West Suffolk College for the opening year.  Students will move into the new building for the start of the 2020/21 academic year to complete their second year of studies. 

7. How will you minimise any possible disruption of moving to the new building?
We will only move to the new purpose built state of the art building when it is absolutely the right time, and in the best interests of all of our students.  You can be assured that the move will be planned meticulously and students will move seamlessly when the time is right so as not to disrupt your learning.

8. Who will be teaching me and how do I know the quality of teaching?
We are currently appointing the very best teachers to Abbeygate Sixth Form College who come with an outstanding reputation and have consistently achieved excellent results for their students.

9. What is the structure of the day?
Registration is at 08.55 every morning and you will finish at varying times in the day depending on your individual timetable.  In addition to the standard teaching hours for each A Level you study, you will also have one hour of Directed Independent Learning (DIL) time on your timetable for every subject you study.  This is a time dedicated to completing specific tasks that your teacher has set, such as reading academic articles, watching a specific YouTube clip or TED talk, reading a newspaper article or following a specific twitter feed.   When you are not in lessons, you can spend time studying individually, with friends or just relaxing in the common area spaces.

10. Can I go home in a study period?
We are lucky to have a range of study areas available to our students as well as an excellent library facility.  However, if your lessons finish before the end of the school day and it is more convenient for you to go home you are able to do so, if you wish to stay on site and study you are more than welcome to do so.

11. Is there a dress code?
We ask all our students to dress respectfully.  We understand that you are all individuals and we celebrate this.  However, we do ask that you are aware of your surroundings and you are respectful of those around you. 

12. What extra-curricular activities will there be?
We offer a range of extra-curricular activities.  You can see the list in the prospectus and on our website.  If there is something that you are interested in that you can’t see, then why not start your own club!

13. What trips are offered?
We know educational visits and work with employers is vital and these activities will be an integral part of your A Level studies.    A range of trips and education visits are planned throughout the year and your subject teachers will give you all the information you need as the year progresses.  

14. How can I can get to Abbeygate SFC?
Find out more about how to get here on our Travelling to Campus page.

15. What are the entry requirements?  Do I need to have passed Maths and English before I can start my A-levels?
All the entry criteria can be found on our website.  In summary, you are required to achieve a minimum of 5 GCSEs grade 4-9.  However, there are certain subject specific entry criteria that must be achieved if you are to study that subject at A Level.  Our advice is always to do the best you possibly can to give you lots of options when deciding which A Levels to study.  Don’t worry, we will advise you every step of the way to make sure you make the right decision.