digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















A sixth form college is an educational institution in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Belize, The Caribbean, Malta, Norway, Brunei, among others, (and until 2012 in Hong Kong) where students aged 16 to 19 typically study for advanced school-level qualifications, such as A-levels and the International Baccalaureate Diploma, or school-level qualifications such as GCSEs. In Singapore and India, this is known as a junior college. The municipal government of the city of Paris uses the phrase "sixth form college" as the English name for a lycée.[1]

In England, The Caribbean, and Wales, education is only compulsory until the end of year 11, the school year in which the pupil turns 16 (although this is changing in August 2013 to compulsory education until year 12 and by 2015, education will be compulsory until year 13)[2] In the English and Welsh state educational systems, those wishing to continue may either stay on at a secondary school with an attached sixth form, transfer to a local sixth form college, or go to a more vocational further education college, although, depending on geographical location, there may be little choice as to which of these options can be taken. In the independent sector, sixth forms are an integral part of secondary schools (public schools), and there is also a number of smaller-scale independent sixth form colleges.

Students at sixth form college typically study for two years (known as Years 12 and 13, Years 13 and 14 in Northern Ireland and/or lower sixth and upper sixth). Some students sit AS examinations at the end of the first year, and A-level examinations at the end of the second. These exams are called C.A.P.E (Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination), in the Caribbean. In addition, in recent years a variety of vocational courses have been added to the curriculum.

There are currently over 90 sixth form colleges in operation in England and Wales. Most perform extremely well in national examination league tables. In addition, they offer a broader range of courses at a lower cost per student than most school sixth forms. In a few areas, authorities run sixth form schools which function like sixth form colleges but are completely under the control of the local education authorities. Unlike further education colleges, sixth form colleges rarely accept part-time students or run evening classes[citation needed], although one boarding sixth form college exists.

The Caribbean[edit]

In the English-Speaking Caribbean, there are many sixth form colleges, usually attached to secondary schools. Students must usually attain a grade A-C in 1-3 in the Caribbean Examinations Council (C.X.C), examinations. Students that fail these exams are not accepted into the sixth form program and either can do courses in other tertiary facilities, or begin working with high school degrees. After sixth form, students are presented with an Associate Degree.


Scotland does not, in general, have separate sixth form colleges (or, indeed, the same concept of the terminal two years of secondary education as being distinct from the other time spent there); as such, Scottish students who opt to remain in full-time education will typically remain in the same school for fifth, and possibly a sixth year (the equivalent to the English lower- and upper-sixth forms), studying Higher Grade and Advanced Higher qualifications.


The first comprehensive intake sixth form college in England was established in Mexborough, South Yorkshire and took its first intake of students in September 1964. Since then sixth form colleges have spread across the UK and have proved popular with students, their parents, and other groups in the community. Until 1992, these colleges were controlled and funded by local education authorities (LEAs), but the Further and Higher Education Act 1992 transferred all institutions within the sector to the Further Education Funding Council for England (FEFC), a national agency with strategic responsibility for the operation of general further education (FE) colleges. Later the FEFC's functions were taken over by the Learning and Skills Council (LSC), a reorganisation that included changes in the funding and supervision of sixth form colleges.

Sixth form colleges take responsibility for their own employment, pensions and pay arrangements with the support and advice of the Sixth Form Colleges' Association (SFCA, formerly SFCF). The SFCA is made up of representative principals from SFCs across the UK. The SFCA sets up several Committees to deliver its range of support services for SFCs as well as facilitating lobbying work with Central Government. Colleges for the most part do not charge full-time daytime students; however, adult students (most of whom attend evening classes) may have to pay a fee (for examinations, tutors' time and other costs).

There are also some sixth form colleges in the independent sector, specialising in A levels for which fees are paid - these are unconnected with the SFCA.


Main article: Further education

In Wales, sixth form education falls under the remit of the Welsh Assembly, and sixth form colleges are sources of further education alongside FE Colleges and sixth forms integrated into secondary schools. They typically offer the Welsh Baccalaureate and Key Skills qualifications.

Hong Kong[edit]

Even though Hong Kong had changed from having two public examinations to one, its first sixth form college, PLK Vicwood KT Chong Sixth Form College, remains in operation as an upper secondary college.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Children & families." (Archive) City of Paris. Retrieved on 20 July 2010.
  2. ^ Education and Skills Act 2008, Office of Public Sector Information.

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sixth_form_college — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.

933 news items

TES News

TES News
Mon, 07 Jul 2014 08:45:00 -0700

A sixth-form college has applied to be the first to open its own free school in a bid to tackle underperformance in local schools. NEW College Pontefract has submitted a bid to the Department for Education to open a new 16-19 school in nearby Doncaster.

Grimsby Telegraph

Grimsby Telegraph
Wed, 23 Jul 2014 02:56:15 -0700

THEY'RE ALL WINNERS: Tollbar Sixth Form College Year 13 leavers and prize winners with Tollbar Family Of Academies' chief executive David Hampson, centre. Comments (0). TWENTY-eight shining stars from Tollbar Sixth Form College were rewarded ...

Hereford Times

Hereford Times
Mon, 07 Jul 2014 05:06:33 -0700

A NUMBER of former students returned to Hereford Sixth Form College on Saturday to commemorate its 40th anniversary. The Folly Lane centre was opened in 1973 and has gone one to be one of the highest achieving establishments in the country.

Cambridge News

Cambridge News
Thu, 17 Jul 2014 10:45:48 -0700

Students have enjoyed their leavers' balls for another year – and our photographers were there to capture the occasion. Our slideshow features images from Hills Road Sixth Form College, Parkside, The Perse, North Cambridge Academy, St Bede's, ...

Norfolk Eastern Daily Press

Norfolk Eastern Daily Press
Tue, 01 Jul 2014 10:00:24 -0700

Paston Sixth Form College has marked its 30th anniversary with a celebration event which attracted more than 200 former staff and students. Comments; Email; Print. To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in. help us keep our site free.
Salisbury Journal
Wed, 09 Jul 2014 00:52:30 -0700

SALISBURY'S new sixth form college has been given the formal go-ahead to open in September. The funding agreement has been signed by Parliamentary Under Secretary for Schools Lord Nash, paving the way for the college to open in its temporary home ...
DeHavilland (press release) (subscription)
Mon, 21 Jul 2014 07:58:50 -0700

Lucas, I - Sixth form college funding. Labour MP Ian Lucas: What assessment she has made of the effect on admission numbers for sixth-form colleges of funding changes since 2010. Responding, Conservative Skills, Enterprise and Equalities Minister Nick ...

Cambridge News

Cambridge News
Sat, 12 Jul 2014 23:00:00 -0700

First prize in the Cambridge exhibition has been won by Pan Pattanapeeradej from The Leys, second prize went to Mollie Andrews from Long Road Sixth Form College and third prize was won by Javier Mondragon-Sanchez from The Leys. Miranda Nye from ...

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Talk About Sixth form college

You can talk about Sixth form college with people all over the world in our discussions.

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!