- NDA16+ Common Room
NDA16+ Student Life
- Excellent teaching and support
- State of the art learning facilities
- Sixth form only social and study areas
- Financial support with your studies
- Free lessons within your weekly timetable
- 16+ students can sign in and out during the school day
- Dress code developed by students
- Free gym access
- Free Wifi throughout the campus
- Free printing to support your studies
- Free travel on Academy buses for those living more than 2 miles away from the new Campus.
At North Durham Academy we aim to provide as many of our students as possible with financial support to help in their sixth form studies. In addition to the support detailed above, 16+ students may be eligible to apply for further financial support with their studies and travel from the government’s 16 to 19 Bursary Fund.
Each September, the Academy will receive a sum of money to support 16+ students and will allocate that money to students who apply and are eligible for support based upon government guidelines.
There are two types of 16 to 19 bursaries:
A ‘Vulnerable Student Bursary’ of up to £1,200 a year for young people in one of the defined vulnerable groups.
A ‘Discretionary Bursary’ that institutions can award to meet individual needs to support 16+ students in their education. For example, this could be for transport, meals, books and equipment. Discretionary bursaries are available for students who are in receipt of free school meals, or whose family income is less than £25,000* per year. All 16+ students may apply for an ad-hoc discretionary bursary and these are considered on an individual basis where it is likely that a contribution towards the full cost of the claim may be made as a one-off payment depending on circumstances and fund availability.
Please note that full guidance and application forms for the 16 to 19 Bursary Fund are included in the Enrolment Pack issued to all 16+ students in July of each year in preparation for enrolment in September i.e. the start of the new academic year.
*Figure based on current government guidelines.
All Sixth Form students have access to the Sixth Form common room, Sixth Form study area in the LRC with computers and a quiet study room. No other student from years 7 to 11 should be invited or allowed into the Sixth Form areas.
Sixth formers – as they are much older than many other students in the Academy – should not use the Year 7-11 social areas and should make sure they act responsibly in the other areas of the academy.
We expect all students to have 100% attendance and to be on time to every lesson. We realise however, that sometimes unavoidable things will occur which may prevent you from coming to sixth form, or being late to a lesson. When such problems occur you must let us know as soon as possible, or preferably beforehand. If your attendance drops below 95% we will provide you with support and if necessary begin the disciplinary process, so you must be aware that failure to improve poor attendance will mean that you will lose your place in the sixth form.
If there are any personal circumstances such as a medical condition, extra-curricular activities or family occasions (not including holiday), which may affect your attendance, please let us, know as soon as possible.
If you need to be absent, and you haven’t let us know in advance – such as illness – you must ring the Academy before 8:15am. When you return to sixth form, you must bring a note signed by a doctor or your parent/carer, and hand it to our 16+ Progress Leader.
Sixth form courses are extremely demanding and there is a huge amount of work to complete every year before the summer exams. Part of the Learning Agreement that you and your parents/carers signed at enrolment makes clear that you should not take holidays in term time. Holidays taken during term time will be counted as unauthorised absence and may possibly mean you will be asked to leave the sixth form.
The end of term for Year 12 will not be until the rest of the Academy finishes at the end of July and full attendance is required until this time. Once the Year 12 exams are finished the A2 courses begin, as well as work experience and enrichment that is essential to success in Year 13. It is compulsory that students are present for these lessons until the end of term. Anyone not attending will be regarded as not wanting to continue at North Durham Academy into Year 13.
All Sixth Form students are considered as ambassadors for the Academy and, as such, we have very high expectations of 16+ student conduct within the Academy. We expect sixth form students to display high levels of maturity and behaviour as they move around the Academy in between lesson time, at break and lunch and at the start and end of the day. We expect 16+ students to set a positive example for students in lower year groups and give a positive impression of the sixth form at all times.
Sixth Form students are allowed to leave the Academy campus at break and lunch times and during study periods (See Directed Study Time) as long as they sign out and back in – and arrive on time at their next lesson.
Sixth form students must wear their ID badges on the lanyard provided at all times. Because we allow students to wear their own clothes it is important that we are able to tell who is a member of our sixth form so that we can ensure we keep our Year 7-11 students safe and can quickly identify anyone who should not be on the Academy campus.
16+ Students at North Durham Academy will not be required to wear a uniform like students in Years 7 to 11. We do, however, have a dress code as you would expect in any adult place of work or study. The sixth form dress code has been designed by students and allows our 16+ students to dress as they like within the guidelines provided.
Photographic ID badge should be worn on a lanyard and be visible at all times.
- Clothing that is too revealing or likely to cause embarrassment must not be worn.
- Students should not wear clothing with offensive pictures/writing or football shirts.
- 16+ students are allowed to wear jewellery that is minimal and discreet. Excessive facial piercings, make-up and hair styles/colours should not be worn in the Academy.
- The wearing of hats, scarves and outdoor coats inside the Academy and in lessons is not allowed to help with safeguarding the building.
- Headphones should not be worn in lessons to ensure an effective learning ethos in our classrooms.
- 16+ Students are permitted to wear sixth form hoodies inside the Academy.
The list above is not exhaustive and is intended to show what our students believe is acceptable for 16+ study. Where a student is concerned about the appropriateness of their clothing choices, they should consult the Assistant Principal 16+ for guidance.
The list above is not exhaustive and is intended to show what our students believe is acceptable for 16+ study. Where a student is concerned about the appropriateness of their clothing choices, they should consult the Head of Sixth Form for guidance.
For every subject you take you will need to provide yourself with a pad of A4 lined paper, pens, highlighters and general stationery as well as an A4 ring-binder to keep your notes in. You will not be using exercise books in lessons, but you will have to hand in your file for regular file-checks so keeping neat notes for each subject is essential.
Sixth Form students will have access to a locker to store their personal belongings and files during the day. Electronic charging lockers for sixth formers’ ICT devices and mobile phones are available – students will need to bring their own chargers for each device.
Students will have independent study periods in their timetable each week. As you begin your sixth form courses it is important to get as much support as possible to make sure you make the step up from GCSE to sixth form study. As the term goes on, there will be the opportunity to receive more study time in each subject to allow you to develop your personal study and research skills which are essential to achieve high grades. This will be available to students who are working well in lessons and are achieving, or exceeding their target grades. The total amount of study periods you have each week is therefore up to you, and how hard you work at the start of term.
While we understand that many students will work part time, research by Durham University has clearly proven that working too many part-time hours while at sixth form will significantly affect the grades you achieve in your exams. It is essential that you achieve the right balance between sixth form and part-time work. If you achieve this, there will be no problems during your time in sixth form. If you do not achieve the right balance, we will support you as best we can, but ultimately, you may need to choose between sixth form and working.
Students are permitted to use their mobile phones/earphones within the 16+ common room only. Mobile phones/earphones are not allowed to be seen or heard anywhere else in the academy building. Any 16+ students who do not adhere to the policy will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the NDA Climate & Attitude for Learning policy.
Our policy regarding smoking is the same as for adult members of staff in the Academy. We discourage you from smoking as strongly as possible, and will provide support to stop smoking as part of tutorial lessons and to anyone who asks for help.
There is no smoking allowed anywhere on the Academy campus. If you must smoke, then this must be well away from the Academy campus, and in a way that does not affect local residents or reflect badly on the Academy.
Eating sandwiches, Paninis and snacks in the common room is fine, as long as all rubbish is put in the bins provided and any spillages are cleaned up. Cooked food should not however be brought up from the refectory into the common room due to the problems of spilling cooked food on the way to, or in the common room, disposing of dirty plates and the smell in areas where people will be working. Cooked food should therefore be eaten only in the downstairs eating areas.
Cooked food from outside the Academy should not be brought onto the Academy campus. If you buy takeaway food for lunch or break, it must eaten before you come back into the Academy and wrappers dispose