What Makes a Successful Sixth Form?

5 Key Factors to Consider When it Comes to Your Sixth Form Space

In our line of work, we see a lot of sixth form centres. Some are superb. Others are not. But what, exactly, is it that the successful environments do so well? TaskSpace examines the five key philosophies that every successful sixth form embraces…

1. Your Sixth Form is a Bridge

The best sixth form centres are always found within institutions that understand that sixth form is the bridge between the academic and professional worlds. A great sixth form centre is neither an extension of the school, nor an office environment, but a balanced combination of the two, providing a unique space for today’s oldest pupils and tomorrow’s youngest professionals.

2. Your Sixth Form Has Competition

After Year 11, there is a wealth of choice which is open to the student for the first time. Why should they choose to stay with you? The most successful sixth forms embrace this element of competition and try to remove any question of doubt about the next logical step for both students and parents. By making the sixth form centre an appealing, contemporary, grown-up environment yet still retaining elements of familiarity, it is much easier to encourage students to continue to sixth form, and attract new sixth formers from other schools.

3. Your Sixth Form is a Cultural Compass

It’s a fact that the culture in any school is set by the sixth formers. The younger students look to the oldest pupils as role models, and often take on their attitudes and values by default. A school that has relaxed, happy, focused sixth formers, tends to have younger pupils that fit the same mould. The schools that understand this, tend to go above and beyond when it comes to sixth form facilities. It’s deeper than just dotting a few beanbags around and installing a coffee machine – it’s about creating a cultural DNA.

4. Your Sixth Form is Not School

Sixth formers want their own space and their own set of privileges that set them apart from the rest of the school. The most successful sixth form centres offer both a sanctuary away from regular school life, and a dynamic educational hub that encourages both deep, individual learning and collaboration with partners or within small teams. Think somewhere between school and Starbucks.

5. Your Sixth Form is Constantly Changing

Professional working environments are changing at a pace not seen since the Industrial Revolution. Agile working is here to stay. Fixed PC’s and work stations are rapidly being replaced with flexible hot desking zones and portable tech. The key with any modern sixth form centre is to make the space flexible enough to keep pace. For example, modular and reconfigurable furniture gives you the flexibility t