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Sixth Form Information

Attractive Opportunities

Sixth Form in St. Patrick’s Academy offers attractive opportunities to grow and develop and become resilient, confident and competent young men and women, well equipped with the knowledge and skills to meet the new challenges that lie ahead. In St Patrick’s Academy we strive to create a happy and supportive environment which will lead to better learning and greater personal achievement. We offer a wide range of qualifications and provide excellent careers guidance. There are many opportunities to participate in activities in leisure, community, extracurricular and enrichment. Throughout sixth form you will continue to develop skills in leadership, communication, time management, teamwork and resilience; essential skills and qualities which will help to prepare you for life beyond school.


St Patrick’s Academy welcomes to the Sixth Form students whose GCSE results reflect sufficient ability to enable them to cope with the demands of AS and A level study and whose attendance, application to study and general behaviour have been of a high standard.


The Sixth Form curriculum provides a two-year academic and personal preparation for entry to Higher Education, apprenticeships or to employment. As a sixth form student, you are expected to show maturity, self-reliance and a sense of responsibility in your approach to work, and to participate fully in the life of the school.


You can study 3 or 4 AS level subjects. Each week you may expect to spend approximately 5 hours in private study in school and to have 12-15 hours of homework. Since steady work is essential for success at A level, your academic progress and commitment will be closely monitored throughout the two year ‘A’ level course by your subject teachers, tutor and year head.


A positive attitude to personal and social development is also vital. You are expected to develop your personal and social skills through participation in leisure, community, extra-curricular and enrichment activities. You are encouraged to use the excellent range of leisure facilities which are provided on the school campus and close by. You will also participate in clubs, societies, competitions, team events, community and cross-community projects.


The Sixth Form provides an exciting, varied and challenging environment. If you have good academic ability, an interest in your studies and a willingness to exercise and develop your talents, the two years you spend here should prove both worthwhile and enjoyable.

Entry Requirements

Intensive Study

You must be committed to two further years of intensive study.


Attendance: Students must have an attendance rate in Year 12 of at least 90% (unless there are extenuating circumstances which will be discussed at your post GCSE results interview in August).


Behaviour: Students must have observed school rules especially regarding punctuality, conduct, and adherence to uniform regulations, and respect for staff, fellow students and school property.


NOTE: Entry to Year 14 (upper sixth) requires a satisfactory report on your academic progress, attitude to work, attendance and general behaviour at the end of Year 13.

Making ‘A’ Level Choices

Finalising your Choice

When finalising your choice of subjects for ‘A’ level, you should try to follow these guidelines:


(1) Choose subjects which you like


You will be studying a small number of subjects in depth and will have to spend a considerable amount of time at each one so it is sensible to choose subjects which you will enjoy.


(2) Choose subjects which you are good at


Your progress and your performance over the last five years should give you a good idea of your ability in each subject. You should also discuss your suitability for ‘A’ level with your subject teacher. Your performance in GCSE will also help you to decide your choices.


Choose subjects which are relevant to your career plan


(3) The booklet given to you last June is intended as a useful general guide. Whether or not you have decided upon a particular career, you should read very carefully the references to career opportunities to make sure that you are not ruling out suitable careers. If you have any doubts about your choices, discuss these with careers staff.

Study Skills

Work will be Demanding

As a sixth former you have chosen to study further. Your decision indicates that you want to learn more about your selected subjects and that you are prepared to take a mature and sustained interest in your studies.


‘A’ level work will be demanding; you will be expected to become much more active and involved in class, to take part in discussions, to contribute your own ideas, to support these with valid arguments, and to carry out research and background reading. You will need to develop the skills of both oral and written expression. As a young adult, you should be able to approach your teachers in a mature and open manner, to accept their guidance, criticism and correction with good grace and to co-operate fully in class.


For the first time in your school career you find that you have study periods on your timetable. This time must not be wasted. It has several purposes:


  1. to provide time for organised leisure activities
  2. to provide time for community work
  3. to provide private study time which you will use for background reading, using library resources, preparatory work for essays and projects and for collaborative work with other students.
  4. to research and develop your Career Action Plan.


You are now responsible for organising your study and for completing given tasks in your own time. How well you manage this responsibility will have a major bearing on how successful you will be in your AS/A level examinations.


Set aside some time

You should set aside some time each week for physical exercise and for community work. The following activities are available to you:

Fitness suiteTennisGaelic football (boys)HurlingChess
Fitness suiteTennisGaelic football (boys)HurlingChess
SwimmingTable TennisGaelic football (girls)SpinningDraughts
SquashBasketballCross country1K Academy walkGolf
BadmintonCamogieSoccerCouch to 5K

Extra curricular


Young EnterpriseMentoringHeadstrong Group (boys)ChoirConservation & Eco Group
DebatingLiteracy paired ReadingFilm ClubOrchestraPoetry Slam
Public speaking (English & Irish)Liturgical GroupPioneer GroupTraditional GroupCreative writing
President’s Award/Duke of EdinburghCoachingSentinusConservation GroupCoding club

Take part

There are many opportunities to take part in community work during sixth form. These include visits to the Buddybear Trust, St Vincent de Paul, Pope John Paul Award, primary school visits, visits to residential homes, Southern Area Hospice and charity work.

Enrichment activities

Opportunities for students

Throughout sixth form there will be opportunities to complete some enrichment courses such as: First Aid, Cookery Class, Study skills, Mentoring, Literacy training, Mental health awareness, coaching and referee courses.


We have the Ardlann, a Sixth Form Common Room, with tea/coffee facilities available. This provides opportunities for students in Year 13 and 14 to come together to interact socially with their peers and provides some down time from their A-Level studies.


Admissions criteria