Letter to Year 12 Parents

Please click the link below to view a letter for Year 12 Parents from Mr S Wright, Director of 6th Form.

Transition Days Letter

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22 September 2015

Dear Parent/Carer

We hope your son or daughter has settled well into the Sixth Form at Southmoor.  We’ve had a packed first few weeks and I know the change from GCSE to A-level is a shock for students but from what I’ve seen we have a focused and committed new year group who are already showing fantastic maturity and work ethic.

I know they will be telling you some of the important things that are happening but I also know they might forget the odd one.  So just for your information here are a few dates to keep in mind for the Autumn Term:

  • 5th October at 4.30pm – 6.30pm Year 12 Induction Evening.  We ask year 12s to come with parents or carers to meet their tutors, discuss how the first month has gone and look at the first set of assessment data.
  • 19th November at 5.00pm -7.00pm Curriculum Surgery.  A chance for you to talk to subject teachers.
  • 7th-11th December – Mock exams.  This is a vital week – we need to see that students have engaged with Sixth Form learning and have carried out independent work and revision.  Results will be released in January.

In addition the students will have a program of events and visits on a Wednesday. Coming up we have Study Skills, and presentations from Durham University‘s Supported Progression program and the national Realising Opportunities Scheme, both of which allow students to access reduced tariff conditional offers at top universities.

Lastly I just wanted to let you know that you are welcome to contact us with any concerns throughout the year – either to our email address or through the main school switchboard.

Yours sincerely

Sammy Wright
Director of Sixth Form


AS Results Day 2015


Our First Results are in!

AS results are only a staging post on the way to your full A-level grade, but they are the first formal exam results we’ve had so we thought we’d let you know where we are. And, I have to say, it’s looking very good.


First, the headlines. 99% of our students gained a pass, with 17% of them gaining at least three As and Bs – something which puts us well on track to beat national averages in our very first year of full A-level results in 2016. I’m not even going to mention that to beat the national average would smash the average for the City of Sunderland – after all, you know that is why we set up the Sixth Form here in the first place.

Of course, there are always ups and downs, particularly in AS results, which contain modules that many students go on to resit in year 13. But many of our students have done superbly already, with individual results ranging from AAA to ABBB that will put them in pole position for the top university places – with special mention going to Emma Bailey for the best exam performance in the school!


Even for those few who are disappointed with their results, I want to say a huge well done – after all, this is only the half way point, and historically, results do improve between AS and A2. We are now expecting superb things not only from the A-level results, but also from the future careers and university destinations of our first cohort.

Our retake students have done superbly as well – with all those resitting GCSE English gaining their coveted C grade. Given that nationally only 9% of students who retake make it, this is really excellent work from all concerned.


Our teachers too deserve some real congratulations. Whether it is the excellent performance across core subjects, including both English Language and Literature, or the real individual stand-outs – the Maths department ensuring that 100% of students gained at least a C in AS maths, or Psychology scoring 27% A grades – they have really outdone themselves. Subjects have consistently added value, and we are only at the start of our journey. Who knows where we can go!

Looking forward to September and a whole new challenge!

Sammy Wright
Director of Sixth Form









On the 24th and 25th of June we welcomed the new intake of year 12s to sample Sixth Form life during our Transition Days. We had a fantastic turnout, well up on last year and reflecting the increased number of applications. We were particularly happy to see more than twenty students from outside Southmoor.


Over the course of two days, students met their form tutors, handed in consent forms for their weekend away at Derwent Hill, learned about the program of events and guidance in the Sixth Form, and most importantly sampled the lessons they had chosen. There were certainly some shocked faces when they realised how much work A-level study demands of you, but we were able to show just how much support the Sixth Form at Southmoor can offer.


The days wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work of our current year 13s, who rounded the event off by competing against year 12 in our first ever Sixth Form Sports Day.


Congratulations to everyone involved!


Mr Wright



Letter from Mr Wright to New Year 12’s

Important upcoming events for new Year 12’s:

I wanted to remind all our new year 12 of the upcoming events, and some of the things you can do to prepare for them.  

  1. Extra Guidance Meeting.   Anyone who is still struggling with their choices and would like to discuss them further before transition days should email Lorraine.cook@southmoorschool.co.uk to arrange an extra guidance meeting – or you can just turn up in the Sixth Form and have a chat!
  2. Transition days – 24th and 25th June.  These are the essential next stages in your progress to Sixth Form.  You will have a chance to meet tutors, experience lessons in your chosen subjects, try out your tablet computers, and get to know other students in your year and the year above. There will be games, prizes, and summer research tasks set. Attendance is compulsory – please come to the sixth form entrance at 9.00am on both days.
  3. Electronic communication. On transition days, you will begin using your Sixth Form email. Please set this up in advance, by going to outlook.com and opening an account using the formula surname.firstname.southmoor@outlook.com. Any problems, call or pop round.
  4. Derwent Hill. Please return permission slip – I enclose another copy in case it has been lost. No money is due until you enrol, but we need permissions ahead of time. If money is tight, remember you may be eligible for a sixth form bursary of up to £1200. Please email Kathryn.sewell@southmoorschool.co.uk if you think this might apply to you.
  5. Martin Gray Academy. We are launching a new football program for sixth form students, where we will have competitive fixtures and students will complete a coaching or refereeing qualification. If you are interested, please email emma.stoddart@southmoor.co.uk.
  6. Enrolment. More details will follow, but you need to be aware that enrolment will take place on GCSE results day. Any problems with missed grades can be discussed then. If for whatever reason you are not available on that day, you can provide us with a letter beforehand indicating your desire to take your place up, providing you get the grades. This can be handed in at the school office, addressed to Lorraine Cook, The Sixth Form at Southmoor. You will then be invited to enrol on the 1st September.


I look forward to welcoming you as a year 12 student in September.


Sammy Wright

Director of Sixth Form


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TEDx at Southmoor 2015


The first TEDxSouthmoorAcademy on Saturday 21st March was a resounding success.

We were immensely privileged to have speakers coming from as far afield as Scotland and London just for the occasion, including former vice-chair of Arsenal and the FA, David Dein. Here are some photos from our fab event…


The TEDx Program is designed to help communities, organizations and individuals to spark conversation and connection through local TED-like experiences.

At TEDx events, a screening of TED Talks videos — or a combination of live presenters and TED Talks videos — sparks deep conversation and connections at the local level. TEDx events are planned and coordinated independently, under a free license granted by TED.

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