Frequently Asked Questions
Q How many AS Levels / Post 16 courses do I need to study in the first year of St. Louis 6th form?
A We expect most students to study a combination of 4 general/applied A level subjects or BTEC / Cambridge Technical subjects in the first year. Those who study three post-16 courses will complete the CoPE qualification in Year 13. Pupils may combine applied / BTEC / Cambridge Technical courses with A levels to a maximum of 4 subjects. However, pupils should be cautious of choosing more than two applied courses if you are thinking of applying to St Mary’s University College, Stranmillis, Queen’s or other Russell Group Universities.
Q How many subjects do I study in Year 14?
A Most students continue to study 3 A2/ Applied subjects in Year 14, but where it is appropriate, it is possible to continue with four. There is an on-going guidance process throughout the two years which focuses on your future plans and ambitions and we tailor your curriculum accordingly. We give a personalised approach throughout.
Q What is the difference between AS and A2?
A AS levels are qualifications in their own right. You can cash them in at the end of Year 13 and you will have achieved 3 or 4 AS Levels.
Q What is a linear A Level?
A See page three of the prospectus for more details. This new form of A Level has been introduced for some UK Examination Boards. The AS level does not contribute towards the final A Level grade.
Q What is a BTEC?
A BTEC and Cambridge Technical Awards are post-16 courses equivalent to A Levels. This option offers a vocational route and a more enjoyable route for those who prefer a portfolio based course without formal examinations.
Q What is an Applied A Level?
A Applied A Levels are a post-16 course. This option offers a more applied / vocational route and a more enjoyable route for those who prefer a portfolio based course. These are more often externally assessed through coursework or a small number of examinations.
Q Do I study all my subjects at the St. Louis site?
A Health and Social Care is currently studied at the Kilkeel branch of the SRC. Engineering, Music Technology, Software Systems Development and Moving Image may be taught in both St. Louis and Kilkeel High. CoPE is also taught between the St. Louis and Kilkeel High sites.
Q What is the difference between school and St. Louis 6th Form?
A There is separate accommodation for use exclusively by 6th Formers. This includes: dedicated study facilities; a 6th form common room with music, comfortable sofas ; dedicated IT facilities; the ability to use your own devices to access the school’s wireless network in the study room and access to the fitness suite in your free periods. Sixth Form prefects are elected every year. A Head Boy and Girl are also chosen and they represent Sixth Form pupils on the school council and the school at public events. There are also other possibilities to take responsibility including roles such as Deputy Head Boy and Girl, prefects and bus monitors. All Sixth Form pupils are expected to mentor a Year 8 pupil.
Q What extra-curricular activities can I take part in?
A There are a great number of after school and extra curricular activities you can take part in which include: Gaelic Football, Camogie, the Choir, Debating Society and Public Speaking, Jazz / String ensemble, entrance to numerous competitions including SENTINUS, the Texaco Art Competition and many more. You may also use the ICT facilities after school or practice your music skills in the rehearsal rooms.
Q Once I have my results, what happens next and when do I find out whether I have got a place in St. Louis 6th Form?
A If you are not already a St. Louis pupil you must make an afternoon appointment at the school on the day the results come out. You will then be given a time to visit the school, accompanied by a parent or guardian, for a short interview with a member of the Senior Management Team. You will also be asked to bring your results slips, previous two school reports, birth certificate and any other supporting documentation you may have for example certificates or awards, progress files etc.
Q Is it only St. Louis students who come to St. Louis 6th Form?
A Absolutely not. Students join us from St. Columban's, St Malachy's, St. Marks, Assumption Grammar and from all of the Newry schools including: Our Lady's, Sacred Heart, The Abbey and St. Coleman's.
They choose us because of our strong academic record, support for progression into university courses and smaller class sizes. Our small sizes ensure all students experience robust and rigorous tutor support throughout the two years. You will experience a truly "personalised" education!
Q How will I be supported if I have any Additional or Special Educational Needs?
A Any exam concessions you have already received should continue. Teaching staff will be informed about any Special Needs to ensure they support your studies in the most appropriate way. Please ensure you put this information on the application form.
Q What are UCAS points and how do I get them?
A The UCAS points system is the system for allocating points to qualifications used for entry to higher education. For example A grades in A2 exams gain a set number of UCAS points, B grades a lower number of points and so on. Other qualifications also have UCAS points attached, for example the COPE qualification which attracts 70 points for a pass grade.
The system allows students to use a range of different qualifications to help secure a place on an undergraduate course at University. This includes BTECs and Applied A levels. Some Russell Group Universities, such as Queens University Belfast, do not base their course requirements on UCAS points, but instead require certain grades. For example, Ulster University is one of 350 other Tariff Universities throughout the UK who follow the UCAS Tariff guidelines.
Q What happens if my subjects are taught / part-taught in the SRC in Kilkeel or in Kilkeel High?
A This is common and many students really enjoy this as they get to experience other schools, to meet students from other schools, or to experience teaching at the SRC.
A special bus service is provided by the school and your timetable is arranged to ensure you have plenty of time for lunch and get to lessons on time. We feel it is important to ensure you can choose from a broad range of subjects so we are happy to provide transport in these circumstances.
From time to time the school may arrange for you to study in other schools in the greater Newry and Mourne area. If there is a subject we do not offer, speak to the Head of 6th form or a member of the Senior Management Team to see whether we can make arrangements for you!
Q Do you keep parents informed?
A We believe that a close working relationship between home and 6th Form is very important to support students to achieve success and realise their personal ambition. We welcome contact from parents if they wish to discuss any matters and we in turn will not hesitate to contact them should we have any concerns. You will receive two official reports at Christmas and during the summer. It is not uncommon for teachers to regularly contact your parents to inform them of progress or any other concerns.
Q Can I use my own electronic 'device' in the study room?
A You may use your own laptop to connect to the schools wireless network. However, it must first be inspected by a member of the ICT staff for suitability. Other suitable devices include tablet PCs, netbooks, MacBooks, iPads or any other suitable computing device as listed in the schools IT Acceptable use policy.
You may not use your phone / smartphone during school hours. However, pupils may use an MP3 player or iPod or similar device to listen to music whilst studying.
Q Do I have to wear a uniform?
A Pupils in the sixth form must wear a uniform. The details of which can be found on the the main school website: stlouis.org.uk. The sixth form uniform is different from that of the middle and lower school. This is to signify that you have become a senior member of the school community. We expect you to wear your uniform with pride and to be a good ambassador for the school at all times.
Q I have more questions!
A Please do not hesitate to contact the school or use the form on this page.