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Fairfax Sixth Form

Sixth Form Careers and Personal Development

Personal Development is Outstanding: Ofsted 2024

The school’s approach to pupils’ personal development is carefully designed to link through each aspect of a pupil’s time at the school. Learning from the personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education curriculum is reinforced regularly in other subjects and during form time. Personal Development rated 'Outstanding', Ofsted 2024
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What careers looks like for Fairfax sixth form

Students arrive in year 12 with varying degrees of certainty about their Post18-options. Whether they plan to study at university, gain an apprenticeship in their chosen field, or take a gap year, we provide a range of activities and invite external speakers to work with students to allow them to make informed choices.

Students receive guidance on careers through the Tutor Time Programme through years 12 and 13, and in Year 12, they are enrolled on the Personal Learning and Development Programme (link to the document here) that includes a careers section in the summer term that will guide students into their chosen paths for post-18.

Students can also attend masterclasses on personal statement writing and digital literacy as part of their entitlement.

Year 12 will be taken early in the term to Aston University for a day of induction into sixth form life by looking at independent learning, team building, exercises and learning how to develop valuable life skills to help pave the way to a successful future.

All students in Year 12 will be able to visit the UCAS Discovery event at the NEC where they meet a wide variety of employers, apprenticeship providers and universities. At a Discovery exhibition student will meet over 100 unis, colleges, and apprenticeship employers face-to-face find out about different options and pathways; listen to live expert talks and get the latest advice and information on different career choices.

Year 12 students are encouraged to apply for a variety of schemes that will support them through the two years of sixth form with a view to going onto university. Schemes such as The Sutton Trust and Access to Birmingham Pathways give students guidance and support, along with the opportunity to attend summer schools and residential courses to give a flavour of university life.

Sutton Trust
Pathways to Birmingham – University of Birmingham

All Year 12 students will undertake a one-week work experience placement in the Summer Term.

Our aspirational trip to The Oxford & Cambridge Student Conferences takes place in the Spring Term of Year 12.

Students receive support in their UCAS application and personal statement from the Head and Assistant Head of Sixth Form.


Students will have meaningful encounters with a wide range of apprenticeship, further and higher education providers during ‘Futures Week’ at the Key Stage 5 Careers Fairs in both years 12 and 13. The aim of the fair is to provide students opportunity to speak with:
• Local college
• National universities
• Employers
• UTCs

Alongside the Careers Fair, students will practice interviews give students the opportunity to take part in a 1:1 interaction with a local employer. Each student receives feedback from their interview. For those planning on university, we also provide practice interviews for admissions.

Students also have opportunities within the curriculum to connect their learning with specific careers.  We have had visits from a variety of providers, such as University of Law, CPS, Post-Mortem Live, Nuclear Energy Agency, PwC and Severn Trent.  More opportunities are sought each year to build our programme of careers for the students.  

Students will also take part in the annual, ‘Meet the Professional’ event which is an opportunity to meet with a selection of people from differing career sectors and it also provides an opportunity for parents, friends of the school and interested professionals to take part in the careers programme. Please see Provider Access – Fairfax Academy for more details on how you can take part.

During the two years, we invite a series of providers from universities and business to meet with our students either through all year assemblies, or in workshop formats to support their decision making.

All of our students have had access to the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme in years 9 to 11 and often continue onto the Gold Award. All external students are invited to take part and should discuss this with the relevant staff when they join the sixth form.

Students also have the opportunity of taking on leadership roles within the Sixth Form via the Senior Prefect Team and perfecting, peer mentor programme and House Captaincy.

Sixth Form Careers Overview

Our careers provision for sixth form students can be found here: Sixth Form Careers Provision 2024-2025

Careers Entitlement

 During Year 12 and 13 students will have:

  • Meaningful encounters with apprenticeship, further and higher education providers
  • At least two 1:1 careers interviews with an independent, impartial advisor
  • Access to impartial careers information and advice via the careers pages of the website and Unifrog,
  • Regular mentoring sessions with the Learning Mentor,
  • Received information that signposts information from post-18 providers,
  • The option to undertake National Citizen Service in the Summer of Year 12, Access to the Personal Learning and Development Programme in Year 12,
  • Opportunities to undertake voluntary work through NCS, local charities and through the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award. 

By the end of Year 13 students will:

  • Have a CV and a personal statement that focuses on your personal skills and qualities,
  • Experienced meaningful encounters with meaningful encounters with apprenticeship, further and higher education providers, giving students relevant information a
  • Know about post 18 learning and employment options and have made successful applications,
  • Know how to prepare for and make effective applications to prospective employers,
  • Know how to find and use a range of careers information resources,
  • Know how and where to access careers guidance,
  • Be able to make effective career decisions and transitions.

Personal Development in Sixth Form

We want students to leave Fairfax with the skills, virtues and experiences that will help to give them the confidence and ability to pursue their goals. We deliver this character education through our ARKS (Ambition, Kindness, Respect and Safety) value, alongside a wealth of opportunities that gives ‘something for everyone’.

We also wish to prepare them with the experiences that employers and higher education institutions seek. We believe that active participation in all that the school has to offer will allow each student to achieve this.

In addition to the three chosen subjects, Fairfax students will also undertake the Personal Learning and Development Programme which includes a weekly Personal Development lesson throughout their two-year course.  This compulsory subject combines the careers programme, PSHE and is filled with enrichment opportunities.