Did You Know? SMHS Sixth Form Facts & Data
A Positive Progress Score
In 2019, SMHS Sixth Form Students made positive progress in both A Levels and Applied General Qualifications. In 2020, the progress made by students based on ‘Centre Assessed Grades’ improved on 2019 outcomes. SMHS students have made positive progress in A Level Subjects for the last 3 years, outperforming similar students nationally on a consistent basis.
High staff to student ratio
Sixth form class sizes at SMHS are deliberately designed to be small so that teachers have more time for each student and can tailor teaching materials for each individual learner.
Specialist Sixth Form Subject Teachers
All of our sixth form teachers are highly qualified, subject specialists. Many of our sixth form teachers are also specialists in sixth form teaching. This includes for example, Maths, English, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Law, Sociology, Psychology, Economics, Geography, History and RE, Business and IT.
High Starters (students with high grade targets)
Whilst we expect all of our students to be challenged by their sixth form studies, high ability students have access to bespoke stretch and challenge programmes including Oxbridge support, the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and a Personal Research Project (PRP).
Oxbridge & Russell Group University Applications
St Mary’s students who are applying to top universities have access to specialist support with university visits and expert knowledge to enhance applications. This will include subject/progression route specific advice and guidance. For example:
BMAT and UKMAT: Specialist support for students wishing to study medicine after sixth form.
Royal Veterinary College (RVC): SMHS students have access to the RVC Outreach Programme to support prospective veterinary students.
University Application (UCAS) Support: All SMHS students can use our UCAS tutor experts for advice and support with their university applications. Dedicated UCAS workshops, practice interviews and support with Personal Statements, along with university visits and visiting university speakers all provide degree specific information and high quality support with applications for university.
UK Quality Mark* for Careers Education
Careers Education is an integral part of our sixth form provision giving students access to the skills, knowledge and information they need to make considered and successful choices for university, apprenticeships and careers. Advice is available to all students and supported by our links to universities, specialist partners such as YC Herts, the Chamber of Commerce and local, national and international employers. Careers events include a Careers Fair organised at the school involving over 30 significant local and national businesses/employers.
*Quality Mark achieved July 2018. SMHS is one of the only secondary schools in Hertfordshire to have achieved this Quality Mark.
Professional Learning Placements (PLPs)
PLPs are unique to St Mary’s and are not offered in any other school. A PLP is a ten week programme during which the student goes to work for one day each week, in a business/industry. PLPs will form part of the Professional and Access Pathways. Students on the Academic Pathway can request to be part of the PLP programme and the placement can be linked to career aspiration or a personal interest.
University & Apprenticeship applications
Progression to University: 100% success rate for St Mary’s students making applications for universities for more than five years.
Progression to Apprenticeship: 100% success rate for St Mary’s students making apprenticeship applications (since apprenticeships introduced nationally).
Students destinations continue to be a significant strength of our provision and in recent years, record numbers of SMHS students have progressed onto university or take up apprenticeships. This year, two students were successful in enrolling at Cambridge University. All students who wanted to progress to University were able to do so over the last 3 years, 88% of all students attended University in September 2020.
Young Chamber School
St Mary’s has Young Herts Chamber School status that provides access to Herts Chamber of Commerce business members and events.
Careers Enterprise Company School
SMHS has a dedicated Careers Enterprise Advisor who works with our Careers Lead to enhance Careers Education, Information, Advice & Guidance (CEAIG) to which students have access. The Marriot Hotels Group, (Hanbury Manor) is linked to St Mary’s and our students work with their senior business mentors and have opportunities to visit a range of Marriot hospitality facilities and leisure venues. In addition, SMHS students who work with the Marriot Group, are guaranteed an interview for apprenticeship and/or employment opportunities.