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Hills Road Sixth Form College

Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 8PE

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About us

We are incredibly proud of the fantastic staff and students of Hills Road who together make this an exceptional place to study, to learn and to grow.

Combined with the first-class facilities and specialist post-16 campus environment, we are really confident that you will enjoy your time here.

As a high-achieving Sixth Form College, our students not only attain the best results nationally for a Sixth Form College but also go on to outperform students from all other types of schools and colleges once at university.

This stunning achievement comes about through the careful emphasis we place on equipping our students to be effective independent learners. We want our students to be curious about the world and ready to take their place in it.

This is a College of opportunity: we hold high expectations for ourselves and our students because we want you to have the chance to be the best version of yourself at the end of your time with us.

We look forward to helping you on your journey with us to becoming a Hills Road student.

Student support

There are many services available at College for practical, academic and emotional support for our students throughout their time here. Making the step up to Advanced level is a challenging one wherever you go and our dedicated support teams are ready and willing to help you every step of the way. 

Dedicated tutorial support and guidance 

Every student has a dedicated, specialist tutor who works with them throughout their two years. This will be your go-to person for help and advice who will be walking alongside you for your Sixth Form years. 

Your tutor will work with you to make the process of transition to College as smooth as possible and will work with you on developing the skills you will need to take your learning and progress forward.

Student Services 

At the centre of the College is Student Services. This team is there to provide you with the answers to any questions that you might have about College life. 

Our friendly staff are there to help you if you’re feeling unwell, unsure, or if you just need someone to speak to. Student Services also monitors attendance and contacts home if there are any concerns.

Learning Service (SILS) 

We recognise that not all students can adjust to the demands of advanced learning as quickly as others.

Our dedicated SILS team provides timetabled supervision and support for students finding the expectations for completing independent study outside lesson time challenging. The team works with students to help prioritise their learning more effectively so they feel more confident and able to complete their studies.

Subject support for learning and extension 

All departments and subjects offer opportunities to support and extend your learning beyond the classroom. Often, these opportunities are provided as lunchtime ‘surgery’ slots, used to diagnose, challenge and support your understanding further.

During these sessions, you can work one-to-one with subject specialists to flesh out your ideas, either going back over topics to understand them better or by pushing your knowledge and extending your learning beyond the specification, where appropriate.

Study Skills

The Study Skills Team provides support covering the full spectrum of needs, including support for students with learning difficulties. Qualified staff carry out assessments for exam access arrangements and then offer appropriate follow-up support. With a welcoming atmosphere and a suite of rooms available from one-to-one diagnostic assessment, through to group study space and also a comfortable rest space for students needing rehabilitation, make sure that you make Study Skills aware of the ways in which your needs can be supported.

Disability 

We are committed to meeting the needs of people with disabilities, and we recognise that a disability can affect people in different ways. We encourage you to make relevant staff aware of your needs so that full and appropriate support can be provided.

Wellbeing team

Helping you to manage the step-up to Advanced level study is a priority at Hills Road and why we have a team of Wellbeing Coordinators, an in-house counsellor, one community Wellbeing dog and a trainee PAT dog to make sure we have the trained resources available to support your needs.

Our Wellbeing Coordinators are here to listen to anything that may be troubling you. It can be a one-off chat to download how you’re feeling; whether it be anxieties about the College, work, family, relationships, friends, anything at all, or you might just be feeling fed up. We also help students with longer-term support.    

In-house Counsellor 

Our in-house Counsellor, Jane is an accredited counsellor who is professionally trained and experienced in listening to young people. As the college counsellor, Jane is used to talking to students about a range of issues and any information shared with her is confidential. A typical course of counselling lasts for six weeks, and the sessions last up to 50 minutes each.

Careers

One of the most important things we do as a Sixth Form College is to help you to decide on your career goals and then to support you in fulfilling them.

As a specialist Sixth Form College, all of our careers staff are post-16 specialists, dedicated to providing you with the very best advice about your next steps, whether you are considering traineeships, higher education, apprenticeships or any other pathways.

In most cases, your journey with our careers department starts straight after October half term.


What makes us different?

Enrich your experience

A real strength of the Hills experience is the significant variety and diversity of enrichment opportunities on offer.

You can get involved in anything and everything, from archery and the chamber choir to robotics and rowing.

All students in Year 12 are encouraged to undertake Enrichment as part of their study programme, and we genuinely believe that you will struggle to choose from the opportunities available!

Why is Enrichment an essential part of your learning?

Skills and talents develop in different ways, and they are not always related to your A level subjects.

It could even be that you find a new talent or skill through Enrichment that you would like to turn into your Extended Project. Perhaps you will develop architectural skills and will consider your own Grand Design, or maybe choosing Debating will encourage you to start a political commentary blog.

Whatever you decide, Enrichment is your chance to try something new and learn in different ways.

Here’s just a taster of what you could get involved in, or view our Gallery to see more activities: 

  • Cheerleading
  • Chinese
  • Debating
  • Digital photography
  • Duke of Edinburgh’s Award 
  • Dungeons & Dragons
  • Football
  • Italian
  • Jazz orchestra
  • Music technology
  • Robotics

Drama and dance

Drama and Dance in the College’s professional, high-tech Robinson Theatre have always been some of our most popular opportunities for students.

You can get involved both on stage and behind the scenes. Through our programme of Enrichment, you can develop your skills by choosing either to perform, direct or be a technician.

Music

The College offers a large variety of musical activities as part of the Enrichment programme and these are open to you regardless of your chosen subjects.

There are regular concerts, both formal and informal, held at venues such as Ely Cathedral, King’s College Chapel, West Road Concert Hall and also at the College, with plenty of opportunities for ensemble and solo performances.

The Chamber Choir and a group of instrumentalists tour overseas every two years, alternating with the Jazz Orchestra and Folk/ Roots group.

Sport

Hills Road students achieve sporting excellence in equal measure to their academic success, supported by the fantastic facilities available at the College. All students have access to these resources for training, enrichment activities or recreational use during their free time. 

The College’s Sports and Tennis Centre offers all students the opportunity to use some of the best sporting facilities in East Anglia, whether you are serious about sport and want to train to a high standard within a supportive environment or you just want to keep fit.

And, with over 40 teams to choose from, the questions is what do you pick!

Transport

By bike

The bike park for the College is located at the back of the College. Please use Purbeck Road to access bike parking. 

By train 

The College is a 10-minute walk from the train station. You may be able to receive a discount for travelling to and from the College. Rail operators Great 

Northern & Thameslink and Greater Anglia grant a discount of 34% to 50% on selected routes to students attending a Cambridgeshire post-16 centre. Visit hillsroad.ac.uk/transport-links for more information. 

Students need to be under 19 years of age and in full-time education to be eligible for the discount.

By bus 

Many students travel to the College by bus with routes that travel to and from the city centre and surrounding villages. Subsidised bus transport is available, please visit www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/post16edtransport for more information and restrictions.

Financial support for transport costs 

Financial support may be available for transport for those students who meet the criteria for the 16-19 Bursary Fund. Students are asked to apply to the College directly in such cases.

By car

There is no student parking at the College.

Restricted Mobility 

Due to the nature of the site, access to some areas of the College is limited. Wherever possible, given prior notification, adjustments will be made to facilitate individual needs. A site plan can be requested from the Main Reception by calling 01223 247251. The plan indicates lift locations, accessible toilets, those entrance doors which have level thresholds to enable access for wheelchairs and wheelchair routes throughout the College.

Further information about accessibility is available from the College’s section o on accessable.co.uk/hills-road-sixth-form-college


Additional information

DATES FOR YOUR DIARY!

24 & 25 June 2020 - Welcome to Hills Days 

Every student holding an offer with us is invited to come along to spend a day at the College. You will get to spend time in your subject lessons so you can make sure you feel comfortable with the courses you have chosen and your teachers will also explain about the summer work.

You will have the chance to explore the campus and meet other new students who will be starting at the same time as you.

Having spent a day at the College hopefully means you can enjoy your summer holiday safe in the knowledge that you have a better idea of what Hills Road is like before you start in September!


AcSEED: Emotional wellbeing and mental health support award

In 2018, the College was accredited with the AcSEED award for emotional wellbeing and mental health support. AcSEED promotes the adoption of best practices in supporting the emotional wellbeing and mental health of young people in schools and colleges, and Hills Road was the first school or college in the region to have received the award.

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