Sixth Form FAQ

How many subjects will I study?

Most students will study 3 subjects in the Sixth Form, though students with an average GCSE points score of 6.5 or higher may be able to take a 4th subject for one year. Students can take A-levels, BTECs or a combination of both qualifications.

How and when do I apply?

Applications open in January of each year and run through until registration in September. Students at Helsby will be guided through the process and will have an individual interview with Mr Duffell or Mrs Robinson. Students new to Helsby in the Sixth Form will be offered a visit to the school to discuss their application and answer any questions about life in the Sixth Form here.

How big is the jump from GCSE?

By now, you have probably heard countless numbers of people tell you that the step-up from GCSE to A-Level is absolutely huge, but don’t let this deter you. Yes, there is indeed a jump, but it will be something that everyone will experience, so don’t feel like you’re the only person finding it tough. Remember, A-Levels aren’t easy. When people tell you about the ‘jump’, they are probably referring to the slight increased difficulty compared to GCSE, and the dedication and motivation needed.

How much work will I get?

Each subject will be different, but as a rule of thumb, you should dedicate at least nine hours per fortnight to independent study in each of your subject.

What different privileges do Sixth Formers get?

As you may be aware, uniform is not required in the Sixth Form, and own clothes can be worn (so long as it is not extreme!). In addition to this, you will be allowed to access areas such as the e-café and E6 during your non-contact time. Students may leave the school site during the school day, using their ID badge to register in and out of school.

What are class sizes like?

Class sizes are usually smaller than at GCSE, to allow teachers to give more of their time each lesson to each student. Class sizes may be around 20 but can be as low as 5 for some subjects and will vary from year to year. The small class sizes allow for extra support from your subject teachers.

How does the form class work in Sixth Form?

In the Sixth Form, you will have a personal tutor, with whom you will have at least 2 appointments per half term. During these appointments, you will discuss your progress, leadership activities, plans for after Sixth Form and any other issues with which you may need support. There will occasionally be whole tutor group sessions and regular assemblies too.

Will my teachers treat me like an adult?

Yes. The relationships between teachers and Sixth Form students are particularly strong at Helsby and students receive excellent support and guidance from their subject staff.

What opportunities are there outside of lessons?

On the website, our ‘Leadership and Enrichment’ tab explains some of the many opportunities available to Sixth form students here at Helsby.

What are the results like?

Please look at our ‘Accountability Measures’ section of the ‘About Us’ tab to see the excellent results achieved by our students here at Helsby.

If you still have questions or queries about life in the Sixth Form here at Helsby, please contact us via and we’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.