Life in the Sixth Form

Entering the Sixth Form is an important and exciting stepping stone to university life. In A Level study you will have an opportunity to specialise in curriculum areas of particular interest and further your depth of understanding to ensure that you are well equipped for the next steps into university.

The Monkton Sixth Form will offer you greater freedoms and, in doing so, encourage you to develop independent thinking, balance and judgement and to 'stand on your own two feet', ready for what comes next.

 As you work out how to prioritise for yourself, you will find that you spend much more time working with your Tutor, monitoring your progress, setting targets, and applying to Higher Education. In addition, the Sixth Form student works even more collaboratively with their teachers, sharing and comparing opinions, engaging in debate and leading the discussion. Some pupils also take the lead at ‘Voluntaries’, helping younger students with their work in chosen subjects, and sharing both their enthusiasm and their knowledge.

Over a quarter of Monkton’s Sixth Form are new to the School, and there is a particular focus on helping these students to make the most of the opportunities which the Sixth Form affords because the time passes quickly. Judging from the number of senior prefects who have joined the School at this stage, our new students find it easy to make an impact. 

Approximately 75% of our Sixth Form are boarders and they find this to be excellent preparation for the next step of living away from home at university, whilst still benefitting from the support and guidance of our dedicated houseparents.

I would encourage all potential Sixth Formers to give some thought to all they want to achieve - intellectually, athletically, aesthetically - to take advantage of this exciting period of your education; at this stage you decide what you do and you will shape, make or break your own Sixth Form experience! Be ambitious, dare to fail and discover success.

But don't just take my word for it, come and see for yourselves what Monkton has to offer with a visit or at an open event. 

Chris Wheeler



We have a broad range of Co-Curricular activities for our Sixth Form pupils including Sports, Expressive Arts, Outdoor Education, our WildMonkton initiative, a service programme which includes a Conservation Group and community service and the Duke of Edinburgh programme. We are also one of the few schools to operate a full Combined Cadet Force.

Read more about our Co-Curricular programme.

Developing Independence

We don’t want our Sixth Formers to leave Monkton like cheese plants. In their natural habit, these plants look healthy and vigorous, but they are climbers whose trunk has no inherent strength. Take away the supporting tree when they grow up, and they fall flat on their faces.

All too often Sixth Formers look like they are confident and flourishing at school, but the support structures at schools hide a worrying truth - that they have very little strength in their own ‘trunk’.

We want to balance the support we give with a developing independent resourcefulness in our students. Rather than avoid failure at all costs, we seek to help them to learn from their mistakes within the context of a supportive environment, and so help them develop their own resilience.

The amount of freedom each student has around their study periods will be carefully expanded as they progress through the Sixth Form. Subject drop-in sessions encourage an attitude of seeking help rather than passively waiting for help to arrive.

Rather than avoid failure at all costs, we seek to help them to learn from their mistakes within the context of a supportive environment, and so help them develop their own resilience.

In addition, we run a comprehensive Year 12 Induction Programme which covers all the aspects of what will make their Sixth Form years successful at Monkton. When they start to think about life after Monkton, we offer advice and support about the options available, including sessions on CV writing and interview technique.

All these things help to develop our pupils independence, resourcefulness and resilience to enable them to thrive in the real world.

The care we take of our students is well known, and it always features strongly in the feedback we receive from our leavers. But what sets Monkton Sixth Formers apart at university and beyond is their resourcefulness and deep understanding of interdependence rather than just independence.

Important Dates

January 2024: Option blocks published

Wednesday 21st February 2024: Deadline for return of Choices Forms to Deputy Head Academic

Societies & Lectures

There are a wide variety of societies available for pupils to join and lead in the Sixth Form at Monkton. These include the Marshall Society for budding geographers, Model United Nations for those who love debating, Semmelweis for future medics and the Clark Society for academics. If you have a particular interest and the society doesn’t exist then, with the support of a teacher, you can set one up!

The Monkton Lecture Series is devised to enlighten, inspire and challenge the minds of the Sixth Form

The Monkton Lecture Series is devised to enlighten, inspire and challenge the minds of the Sixth Form, and over recent years the School has been blessed by exciting visits from a variety of some truly outstanding speakers. From Simon Weston’s (Falkland Hero) moving and powerful talk about the nature of facing hardship, to Ann Widdecombe’s masterful lecture on the nature of perseverance, speakers have talked about a variety of fascinating issues. The School has had visits from various Olympians such as Anna Watkins, Lizzy Yarnold and Sharron Davies, and the brilliant journalist George Alagiah lectured on the subject of multi-culturalism, while Jonathan Porrit (Founder of the Green Party) gave a very thought-provoking, urgent talk on climate change. Although the talks are open to the entire School, each speaker aims the lecture at this specific age group, and many pupils have described these lectures as being ‘genuinely life-changing’. The lectures are a highlight of a Monktonian’s Sixth Form experience.

Succeed beyond Monkton

Monkton is well known for its diverse co-curriculum, its sector-leading pastoral care and its distinctive Christian ethos. At the heart of this for the Sixth Former at Monkton is a commitment to a rigorous and wide ranging academic programme which aims to equip our young adults not only with the qualifications needed for a successful transition to life beyond Monkton, but, vitally, the skills needed to succeed well beyond that.

So we celebrate ambition and achievement alongside an attitude which embraces the lessons which can be learnt from making mistakes. Expecting much from all our Sixth Formers within the context of supportive and specific feedback is, time and again, a major reason for the success and progress of so many of our students. 

See our results and leavers destinations


The supportive and accepting community of Monkton enables students to push boundaries and explore new skills through teaching that failure is a normal part of learning.

I personally have found this approach exceptionally freeing. As a result I have tried activities, such as singing, which previously I had not had the confidence to do. Monkton is far more than just a school. Coming here was truly one of the best decisions that I have ever made.

Hannah, Class of 2021

My time at Monkton was one that I will cherish for the rest of my life, especially the two Sixth Form years. I arrived at Monkton from Egypt as a 14 year old who, unsurprisingly, was overwhelmed and frankly scared by the idea of being in a boarding school away from home. However, the amount of support and care I was shown at Monkton from my teachers and houseparents squashed those feelings almost instantly. I had always been interested in science and the body so choosing my subjects (which were Chemistry, Biology, Maths and Arabic) was fairly straightforward with the aid of my incredibly helpful teachers and their advice. Two years on, I was using every single one of those subjects studying Pharmacy at Monash University in Australia and doing translation work on the side for newly arriving refugees from the Middle East.

Fadi, Class of 2016

For me the joy of Sixth Form has been the depth and focus of study in each of my subjects. The department buildings allow Sixth Formers in particular the space and facilities to delve further into their chosen subjects I was surprised going into Sixth Form by how much time I had to pursue independent study. 

Having to manage more of my time has been a new challenge, but it has left me feeling much more confident in my ability to motivate myself to work efficiently.

Being able to direct more of my own learning has not only furthered my understanding of the course material, it’s also given me a much better idea of what I’d like to study at university.

Jonjo, Class of 2021

As a military child, one thing I have to adjust to very often is change and the school has made this easy for me, especially when we had a big move to Canada during the pandemic. I felt like I was still on top of my work and the teachers understood how difficult work felt at times, taking time to talk me through certain topics and making sure I had the resources I needed. Things like voluntaries, where you can get help from teachers on any subject after school, have been really beneficial especially as the difficulty of the level of work steps up at A Level. Having these one-on-ones with teachers can help you understand topics a lot better if you find classroom settings difficult.

Manuella, Class of 2022