GCSEs (General Certificates of Secondary Education) are the qualifications that most British students take at the age of 16 (Key Stage 4). Students at Ashbourne take a core curriculum covering Mathematics, Science, English Language, English Literature, another major European language, PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education) and Sports. In addition, students can choose from a range of options, so as to take 8 or more GCSEs. This course can either be taken in one year or as part of a broad two-year curriculum.
Ashbourne College’s commitment to small class sizes, individual attention, academic excellence and superb location enable GCSE students to thrive and realise their potential. There is no better private college for GCSE courses in London.
Individual attention begins with the intimacy of classes where there are rarely more than ten students. Aside from the excellent opportunity for engagement, the workload for teachers is less and so they may devote more time to assessing each student’s work individually. Students make progress and learn because of the discipline of regular homework and their efforts are rewarded because of the attention the teacher gives to each piece of work.
Each student at the college is assigned to a personal tutor who is the first point of contact should parents have any concerns about the progress of their children. For GCSE students this role is taken by the head or deputy head of GCSE who, in liaising constantly with teachers, acts as a mentor and motivator.
Attention to the individual is reinforced and supported by reports, which are written by each teacher twice a term. The college is purposefully exam-orientated, so the reports will include grades for mock examinations, which are set with the same interval.
The college has a stunning location next to Kensington Gardens in central London. Its situation offers splendid opportunities to visit nearby cultural icons such as the Science and Natural History museums and the Victoria and Albert Museum, to name but a few of London’s world-renowned cultural attractions.
Ashbourne is far more informal and collegiate than most secondary schools. Because of the great range of subjects found within the college’s curriculum, there is great diversity at Ashbourne, which is reflected by the equally broad range of personalities, interests and ambitions of its students.
Most students develop a warm affection for Ashbourne and form friendships that will be lifelong, despite the short-term nature of their courses. Student happiness is our most important outcome.
New GCSE grading system
The new GCSE grading system is set to roll out from summer 2017. It has caused much discussion amongst educators, as they foresee some initial bumps in the road with the changeover to numerical grading. The following article outlines some of the key points, in addition to some thoughts from our Head of Middle School, Rupert Browett.