If your GCSE score suggests you’re able to cope with the demands of studying 4 subjects (usually at least an average of grade 7 across the board), then this can be discussed at your enrolment interview. Remember, universities are only able to make offers based on 3 subjects and it is far better to obtain 3 top grades than 4 average grades.
I am undecided, can I start with 4 subjects and drop down to 3?
We want to get you on the best possible programme of study as quickly as possible. If you absolutely can’t decide on your perfect 3 courses straight away, you may start with 4, but you must let us know which you are not continuing with before October half term.
What happens if I don’t get the grades for a subject?
The perfect choice of subjects provides challenge without being overwhelming. Therefore, the subject entry requirements are there to ensure that no-one takes a subject that they are statistically likely to fail. The College has over 50 different courses, so there is often an alternative that can be done if you don’t meet the individual entry requirements for a subject.
What happens if I don’t get five grade 4s?
You’ll be considered for the College’s Intermediate Programme, which involves spending an additional year at the College. You’ll be able to take BTEC Level 2 courses in addition to GCSE resits in Biology, Maths and English. The vast majority of students then progress into the Lower Sixth the following year. See https://www.reigate.ac.uk/our-courses/intermediate-programme/
What do I do if I want to change my subject?
If you’re thinking about changing a subject or subjects, it’s better to wait until your enrolment interview (from 26 August), when you can discuss your options face-to-face with a member of staff. Enrolment interviews take place after GCSE results day on 20 August, so you’ll then know for sure what you’re qualified to do.
If you’re 100% sure of any changes and know you’ll definitely meet the specific entry requirements, you can email email@example.com
Can I change my subject once I start it?
Getting on the right course that you are qualified for is very important. Whilst the majority of students have settled on their programme of study, if you want to change one or more of your options once you have started, you may do so during the first two weeks. This is provided you are qualified for the course and that there is space in the classes. You should discuss any changes with parents and your Personal Tutor.
What happens if I haven’t done the course specific tasks and activities on the New Starters page?
It’s very important you have done the work set out on the New Starters page. The activities are designed to give you a detailed insight into what the courses are like. You may find the subject is not what you had expected or you may find others that are of more interest to you. If you don’t complete the tasks, then you won’t have the advantage of knowing that information, to make your final key decisions.
If you’ve been torn between doing work set by your school and work set by the College, this will be taken into account and it will not affect your place at the College.
What will teaching look like in September with the Coronavirus and social distancing?
The Government has made it clear that it wants all students to be back full-time in September. The College will be following the guidance issued by the Department for Education. Therefore, it is our hope that we will be able to run a full timetable as usual. However, if the guidance prevents this, it will involve some element of blended learning with some face-to-face and some remote learning.
How do I join the Aspire programme?
You will be invited to join the Aspire programme if you have good GCSE grades. This discussion will take place at enrolment.
What do you do to ensure everyone gets the support they need?
It’s important to us that every student gets the support they need, which is why the College has a huge range of support options available. This can be tailored to the individual’s needs. For example, if a student requires help in a subject, they can attend a Plus Class. If they have a learning need, the Learning Support Department will be able to provide assistance. For more information on the support options available at College, please see https://www.reigate.ac.uk/reigate-portal/student-support-welfare/
What do you do to help everyone settle in?
What don’t we do? The first half term is specifically designed to ensure you are able to settle in as quickly as possible. Your Tutor is one of your teachers, so they will get to know you very quickly. We run a Community Day early on, which is specific time dedicated to getting to know everyone and having fun. The Students’ Union organises a Freshers’ Party in October and we have lots of community events to get involved with. You can also take part in one of over 50 different activities on offer each week or try out for one of the College sports teams.
How do you help students develop their independent learning skills?
Independent learning is an important concept at this level. You’ll develop these skills throughout your time at College as they are embedded into every lesson. You’ll learn how to revise properly and take responsibility for your own learning, which is going to be essential for the next step, whether that is university, apprenticeship or employment. If you struggle to develop these skills, we provide additional opportunities for you to get the support and guidance you need to thrive.
I’d like to set up a club when I join – can I do that?
Absolutely. We are always looking for ways to expand our activities and wellbeing provision. If you talk to us about it when you join in September, we can support you to do this.
If I don’t get a grade 4 in Maths or English do I have to resit?
Yes. It is a Government requirement that if you don’t achieve a grade 4 in one or both of English Language and Mathematics, you must resit them until you either pass at grade 4 or higher or you have completed your study at the College. Don’t worry if you have to resit them, the College has a fantastic track record at helping students to pass.
What support does the College give for university and apprenticeships?
The College’s Tutorial Programme is designed to support students’ applications to university, apprenticeships and employment In addition the College has a dedicated Careers Team to ensure you receive any extra information and support you may need. The Department also assists with finding work experience placements, which all Lower Sixth students need to complete.
How do I join one of the Sports Teams?
Information about the sports trials will be sent out during the summer break, or as soon as we know when we’ll be able to run them. Depending on which sport(s) you opt to try out for will depend on the place and time of the trials. For more information on the Team Sports available at the College, please visit https://www.reigate.ac.uk/reigate-portal/extra-curricular/
How do I get a Surrey travel pass?
If you live in the administrative county of Surrey, you can apply for a Student Fair Card, which entitles you to a reduction in train or bus fares. You have to apply directly to Surrey for this card (www.surreycc.gov.uk/schools-and-learning/schools/transport/16-plus/apply), but it should be noted that applications for 2020/21 will not open until nearer September.
If you live further afield, you can apply for the 16-17 Saver Railcard (www.16-17saver.co.uk) directly from the Department for Transport.
I have a particular question about a course – can I speak to someone about it?
Yes, absolutely. You can either do this in August at your enrolment interview or email us your query (via firstname.lastname@example.org ) and we will get back to you.
Will there be an opportunity to try out my subjects?
Introductory Day would normally be an opportunity to do this. However, the current pandemic guidelines prevent us from doing that. Instead, we hope that the guidance will allow us to offer this opportunity on Choices Day (Tuesday 25 August). More details will be sent out in the summer holiday.
When will I know my appointment time for my enrolment interview?
We will send you your appointment time during the summer holidays. It is important for you to be available from Tuesday 25 August to 4 September, with teaching commencing 7 September.
I would like to do Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) with the College. How do I sign up?
Students usually sign up to DofE and over 50 different activities at the Activities Fair in the first week of term. However this year may be a little different and we will let you know as soon as we can confirm details. For more information about DofE, please visit https://www.reigate.ac.uk/reigate-portal/extra-curricular/
I am likely to be on the Intermediate Programme. Will I be able to progress the following year?
Yes, provided you meet the progression criteria. The vast majority of our Intermediate students progress to Level 3 study with us.
Yes, the Independent Learning Centre (ILC) is open from 8.00am each day. There are around 90 computers available for use and plenty of desks for independent study. You can also loan out laptops to use in any other part of the College.
How much homework do you get in each subject?
You can expect to get at least 4 hours of work per week, per subject, with this increasing to between 5 and 7 hours for more academic subjects.
Do Level 2 BTECs count towards the five minimum GCSEs needed in order to enter the College?
Yes, provided that they are graded at Merit or higher.
When do you think the new academic year will start?
The College year will start for new students on Tuesday 25 August with Choices Day. Students will need to ensure they are available from this date onwards.
Will there be a day when we can meet with people from other schools?
Yes. Although this would have normally happened on Introductory Day, there will be an opportunity to do this on Choices Day on Tuesday 25 August, provided that the Government guidelines allow this. The first six weeks of term are also focused on settling in and making new friends.
Do students need to submit their A Level preparatory work?
No. The work is designed to provide students with a deeper understanding of what each subject is about and type of activities they will be required to do in each course. Although this work will not be formally assessed, students should ensure they have completed the Aim High tasks, as they will be important in preparing them for the start of term.
Would starting an American Football team be possible at College?
We are always looking for ways to expand the sporting provision offered at College, so we would be happy to consider it.
When will I know what my timetable is?
Every student’s timetable is individual and will be given out on Induction Day, which will either be Friday 4 September or Monday 7 September. We will confirm this to you in the coming few weeks, once the Government has published its guidelines on reopening of schools and colleges for September.
Will you open with full classes?
We will be following the Government guidance on reopening. It is our hope that this will be the case. However, if this is not permitted, we have a clear back up plan, which will involve blended learning, with a mix of face-to-face and remote learning. Fortunately, we have all of the infrastructure and facilities in place to ensure this is as effective as possible.
How will you help new students when they start in September, given they have been out of school for several months?
We shall be helping students in a number of ways. Academically, students will have access to Plus Classes and the Learner Improvement Programme, which will enable them to get additional support with their studies. Pastorally, students will also have their wellbeing monitored effectively throughout their time with us. Their Tutor will be one of their teachers, which means that they will be able to get to know them very quickly. Students will be able to work with our Student Wellbeing Mentors to aid their transition to College and support them in keeping up with their studies. For more information, please visit https://www.reigate.ac.uk/reigate-portal/student-support-welfare/
How are you planning to do the enrolment interviews in the current pandemic?
We shall be closely adhering to Government guidelines. We intend to hold these interviews face-to-face in a similar fashion to previous years, although it may be over a larger number of days.
Does the College have a plan in place in case there is another outbreak of Covid-19?
Yes. We shall be closely adhering to Government guidelines. We have remained open for vulnerable students and those of key workers during the lockdown and have been delivering lessons and learning remotely. If it becomes necessary to introduce further restrictions, we are well prepared for it. As our teachers are specialists in post 16 learning, they are able to deliver effective blended learning if required.
If due to Covid-19, learning does end up including some form of remote learning, what can we do as parents to support?
We are fully intending to return to face-to-face learning in September for all students. However, if the Government restrictions do not permit this, it will be blended learning with some face-to-face and some remote learning. Parents can help in this eventuality by ensuring your son or daughter has a place to effectively work at home and encouraging them to maintain a clear routine. We will be able to support students who do not have sufficient access to IT and students will also be able to utilise the Independent Learning Centre (ILC) to complete work.
What is the dress code for College?
General common sense should apply in your choice of clothing for College (if in doubt please think about what would or would not be appropriate in a workplace such as an informal office). You should not wear clothing that is excessively revealing. Its design must not display images or language which may cause offence.
Is there student parking on site?
There is currently no student parking on site. If you drive to College, you must park legally and considerately.
What are the start and finish times of the College Day?
The normal start time is 9.00am and the end time is 4.15pm. However, this will differ for each student, each day, depending on their timetable.
What does the College do to communicate with parents and keep them up-to-date?
We know effective communication is vital, which is why we always aim to keep the triangular relationship with students, parents and the College at the forefront of everything we do. Parents and students receive Interim Reports every six weeks (five times a year). These reports outline effort in the subjects, attendance and punctuality data and the result of the Key Assessment taken during that period. Students are then required to review these and set themselves targets for improvement, which the Personal Tutor then monitors.
We also offer one Parents Evening per year, which takes place near to the end of the Autumn Term in December. We find this is an ideal opportunity to review student progress after they have settled into their courses and the College. You will also receive a bulletin every three weeks that keeps you up-to-date with the latest information, events and the College calendar. The Principal will also write to you each term to update you on key activities. Finally, parents can login to the Parent Portal, which allows them to track important things like attendance and punctuality and access key information.
How do I pay for items in the Refectory and College Shop?
Students can pay via contactless debit card or by prepayment onto their Student ID card. Normally, we do take real money in the Refectory. However, guidelines for retail in the current pandemic may mean we are unable to do this in the short-term.
What equipment is provided?
You will need to provide your own stationery such as pens and notepads, which can be purchased in the onsite College Shop. All subject specific equipment such as lab coats for science are provided by the College. Consumables for Art and Design courses are available to purchase as discounted bundles (£30 – £40 depending on the course). Text books are provided by the College once you have paid your College Deposit in September.
Will a face covering be necessary at College?
Currently, the Government guidelines do not recommend face coverings for use in schools and colleges. However, if students wish to wear one, that is not a problem. We will let you know if the guidelines change and it becomes mandatory.