Visit to Kew Gardens

The rain didn’t stop Geography students from CTK Aquinas enjoying their field trip to Kew Gardens in November.

They attended a session on ecosystems and climate change looking at how climate change affects our ecosystems today and in the future. Through field-based enquiry students explored and analyzed climate change mitigation strategies while developing knowledge and understanding of this complex issue.  

Their second session was on water and carbon cycles where they investigated the importance of the rainforest in the water and carbon cycles and discovered the impacts that human activity can have on these systems. Despite the damp weather students learned a lot from their visit.

Geography student, Mason said this about his visit to Kew Gardens;

“Our trip to Kew Gardens was a lovely and very intriguing look into the wonderful world of botany and how fauna and flora affect the world and our lives in the short and long term as well as how they adapt to survive in extreme climates and places where their environment is not favourable. The day was split into two sessions. Session one, had my group and I focus on the water and carbon cycle. We were expertly guided by staff to learn how without certain parts of these cycles, like animals eating decaying matter or plants blocking water runoff, would lead to very detrimental consequences for the Earth and our society. We were then taken to a massive greenhouse which simulates the climate of the rainforest enabling, exotic plants to grow and thrive as well as different insects too. We learnt about how there are many products that have ingredients the originate from the rainforest as well as life changing medicines that are extracted from plants and flowers there too. We were then informed about how the rainforest is not being protected and how some illegal practices used to chop down timber is causing the rainforest to shrink which impacts heavily on the massive amount of biodiversity which lives there. We were also taught how to measure the biomass of trees to determine different things about it for example the amount of carbon absorbed or the amount of oxygen it produces.”

Evening of Celebration

Staff, students and parents/guardians alike enjoyed a fantastic Evening of Celebration night recently, full of heartwarming speeches, jubilant celebration and overall cheer.

Our Evening of Celebration is a wonderful night where we celebrate and congratulate the learners leaving CTK that year. Certain learners, who have been nominated by our staff, are also selected to win awards which vary from department awards, all the way to Chaplaincy awards.

Below is a list of winners:

Jessica Benjamin – Textiles

For always being such an enthusiastic creative and going the extra mile with her work. I am certain
you will do wonderful things for fashion in the future. Well done, Jessica.

Lorraine Duncan – Fine Art

For a strong effort at the end and creating some lovely experimental collages that really push the
material process.

Jessica Benjamin – Photography

Again, for always committing 100% and taking some stunning photos along the way.

Mohamed Serrieh – Graphics

For really pulling it out of the bag at the end of the year and creating a personal and thought provoking final piece. Well done, Mohamed!

Rodas Haile – Film Studies

For always being the first to step into the unknown and volunteer her thoughts in class and for her
burgeoning ability to write succinctly and accurately about Film.

Lamarni McEwan – Business Studies

Lamarni has become a model student. He has good attendance and has consistently done well on
all his FSAs over the two years.
In addition he has mentored a first year student at my request without any fuss or hesitation and
always supported other students in his classes.

Omedo Madey – Economics

Has shown a consistent enthusiasm to the subject throughout the course. Omedo has always
demonstrated a positive attitude and is keen to take on difficult concepts, showing a high-level of
resilience and determination.

Francesca Daly – English Lit

Working consistently throughout the course. She writes insightful and sophisticated English essays
and has participated well in revision lessons since I took over the class.

Siobhan Cardy – Politics

Siobhan is an excellent, hardworking and smart working student of politics. She has an excellent
attendance record and consistently does well in her FSAs.

Daiswa Wright – History

Daiswa is a superb student of A level history and her progress throughout the two years of the
learner journey has always been on an upward trajectory. She will be an asset to any university or
organisation that she studies and works for after CTK.

Ashley Rita Huys – Geography

Ashley maintained a high level of commitment to geography over the two-year course, showing
passion and enthusiasm across many topics. She also produced an outstanding NEA on the impact
of gentrification in her local area.

Rachel Quadri – Religious Studies

Tenacious. That is the best word to describe Rachael’s approach to the study of Religious Studies.
During the course, she has wrestled with challenging ideas and made great efforts to master the
many topics covered. In spite of set-backs, Rachael always takes advice before re-committing to
studies time and again. She is now confident in RS – something reflected in improving grades – and
is ready to support her peers when necessary. The journey which commenced at Aquinas will continue through to university as Rachael pursues study at undergraduate level. Well done!

Emmanuella Ansah – French

Emmanuella’s work in French has been exceptional, her commitment and dedication to the course
is incommensurable. She has worked hard since day one and has been a real pleasure to teach.
Her strong spirit and work ethic is an excellent example to all her peers. She was awarded the Jack
Petchey Achievement Award for her fantastic work in lessons, especially, during remote learning.

Emmanuella has always been keen to participate actively in events inside and outside the curriculum, establishing very good relationships with peers and staff alike. I am confident she will excel studying at university and wish her the very best for the future.

Rachelle Ryan – Spanish

Rachelle has been an outstanding student throughout the two years of the course. She has a
natural ability for languages that she has complemented with the motivation to keep progressing
and challenging herself. Her curiosity for Spanish culture has allowed her produce brilliant
investigations on Spain and Latin American countries. Rachelle has been keen to participate in all
extracurricular events; moreover, she has also supported her classmates to succeed in their own
language studies. I am sure she will continue learning and becoming even better in her language
journey. I wish her the best in her future endeavours.

Samuel Balogun – Italian

Samuel has shown incredible dedication to Subject over the past two years, putting in a lot of effort and resilience. He is always very focused, involved, interested in the Italian language and culture. Samuel has always shown great dedication to what happened in the classroom, applying himself a lot even outside the classroom with extra work and homework. Always on time, excellent attendance, producing tasks on schedule and improving a lot during the course. I wish him to continue his future studies with this same dedication and talent.

Kayla Crowder – Sociology

Kayla has demonstrated herself an excellent sociologist. She has been a consistent hard worker
and deserves all the success in the future.

Meher Khan – Psychology

Meher had just moved to the UK when she joined us at CTK, and she has adapted magnificently.
Meher was faced with the task of becoming acquainted with a new area, making new friends
and a new education system. This can be a daunting experience for most however Meher coped
admirably. She settled into class well, she has continuously been well-mannered and merely a
joy to work with. Meher has consistently achieved outstanding grades in all her formal subject
assessments and on no occasion did she lower her standards. Meher is deserving of this award,
and I hope that you achieve everything you have set out to do on this new journey you are about to embark on!

Ismail Adam Adi – Mathematics

Adam, your work ethic is unparalleled. You have shown exceptional academic resilience this year.
Your drive to succeed has not gone unnoticed. It has been a joy to watch you grow into a strong
confident mathematician. You are a role model to your peers and have gone out of your way to
enhance their learning. I am excited to see you accomplish all your dreams. I wish you all the best in your future studies in Aeronautical Engineering.

Ashleigh McDonald – Biology

Ashleigh, you never give up. You embody the qualities of hard work and resilience. You have
constantly tried your best and have received and acted on feedback with charm and good humour.
Congratulations on your efforts in Biology, you deserve all the success that I’m sure will come to
you in the future.

Samson Omotoso – Chemistry

Samson has shown great resilience and dedication through his A level Chemistry studies. He has
used teacher’s feedback in a very effective manner to significantly improve his written answers. He
has been an exemplary student, always completing his homework and lab book in thoughtful and
thorough manner.

Bradley MingielePhysics

Bradley has shown great dedication and commitment to his studies. His work ethic is exemplary.
Bradley has also played a pivotal role in supporting other students in calm and patient manner. He
has been an outstanding student of Physics over the last two years, always obtaining high grades in FSAs and meeting all his homework and lab book deadlines.

Sophie Oughton – Chaplaincy Award

Sophie has supported chaplaincy throughout her time at CTK. Writing for the Diamond club
magazine for the last year. She has helped quietly with charity and events, always being willing to
get involved.

Issa Akmed Serry-Kamal – CTK Graces Award

Issa at all times has demonstrated the GRACES. When faced with challenges he has been resilient
and never given up. He has shown the deepest respect to all members of staff, other students and
himself. In restarting year 13 he was fully aware of what he needed to do and demonstrated a high
level of self-control when working hard in the LRC. He has endeavoured to achieve the high goals
he has set for himself. Issa has been a model student. endeavours.

Daniel Adekoya – Student Enrichment Award

Daniel volunteered to write for the Diamond club magazine for older people during lockdown. He
wrote for six months.

Siobhan Cardy – Student Enrichment Award

Siobhan has been an active member of the eco group throughout her time at CTK, getting involved
in campaigns and attending meetings.

Daniel Adekoya – Careers Award

Since arriving at CTK AQ, Daniel has been proactive in planning his progression and has made
excellent of careers opportunities (many of which take place outside of the Sixth Form day) to develop his personal and professional skillset, such as the BT Elevate mentoring programme. He has made regular use of the Careers Department to review his progression options and to have support with preparing for his university and degree apprenticeship applications. Throughout he has been polite, professional, engaged and enthusiastic, always willing to take feedback and act upon advice given and to go the extra mile. It has been a pleasure to support him and through his dedication and by challenging himself, he now has a bright future ahead. We wish him all the very best.

Mesha Atkinson – LRC Award

Kind and considerate user of the LRC. Always has a smile and listens to ideas.

Jervonte Beckford – Aspire Award

Jervonte has shown incredible determination and resilience whilst he has been at CTK Aquinas. He
has exemplified our motto ‘Be your Best’, working to the best of his ability in every subject and even mentored younger students in Biology.

Esosa Ibude – Outstanding Ambassador Award

Throughout the whole time with us Esosa has been an outstanding ambassador for Aquinas. He
has positively promoted Aquinas and passed on his experience and knowledge to prospective,
students, parents, and governors. He has always been incredibly supportive, and we have really
appreciated the time and energy he has dedicated to Aquinas.

Francesca Daley – Special Endevour Award (In Memory of Andile Mabena)

We dedicate this award to Franky as she has been an outstanding student who showed a great
example of how to overcome any challenges and still achieve high grades! She is a true example
of our CTK Graces especially Grit and Endeavor as Franky has not at any moment decided to give
up when things became more difficult but rather persevered. She came to CTK as a young girl but
leaving as an independent young woman ready to conquer her dreams! We wish her a successful
journey in life and may she continue to inspire those around her.

Owen McCarthy – Grit Award (CTK Graces)

Ben Ravoninjatovo – Respect Award (CTK Graces)

Jeyimbel Dos Reis – Awareness (CTK Graces)

Jaheim Burford – Curiosity (CTK Graces)

Samuel Edo-Osagie – Endeavor (CTK Graces)

Tanya Lam – Self-Discipline (CTK Graces)

Jacob Chacko – ALS Award

We dedicate this award to Jacob for his continuous hard work daily, punctuality and always having
a ‘can do attitude’ which reflected in his academic learning but also as an individual, he has learned
his self-worth and grown in confidence. We admire his dedication and wish him all the best!

Congratulations to all the winners from tonight, and a huge thank you to everyone who attended!

Easter Appeal

In March we launched our second annual Easter Egg Appeal which saw students and staff across the sites purchasing chocolate Easter eggs, big and small, and handing them in to our onsite donation points. The appeal gained lots of attention from students as they continued to demonstrate a great attitude towards almsgiving and outdid themselves with donations!

Come Community Day, more than 300 eggs were rounded up and hand delivered to the Demelza Hospice in Eltham. We were greeted by the amazing nursing staff who gladly helped to unload the special delivery and reminded us of the immeasurable impact that such gifts would have on the children they care for. We would like to thank all who contributed to this virtuous cause and also to think of the families affected by children suffering serious illness and would like to thank organizations like the Demelza Hospice for all the work that they do. 

Sports Day

We were jubilant to finally have the ability to hold our cross-site Sports Day for our learners last week, which saw many of the sixth forms gifted athletes turn out to the sporting event, keen to claim the title of CTK Champions! 

Events began at each site at 1:45pm with Badminton, Football and Table tennis taking place over at St Mary’s, Netball at Aquinas and Basketball hosted by Emmanuel. Once the coaches of students arrived at the relevant sport-hosted site, students were informed of the round-robin style set of rules and eagerly took to their sporting locations. 

This was a wonderful opportunity for students from the pre-existing CTK Football, Basketball and Netball teams to come together and show off their skillsets.

The cross-site event also gave students the ability to converse and mingle with their fellow CTK learners. 

So, which CTK campus was crowned the victors? After hours of sporting amusement, the scores were as such: 

  St Mary’s Emmanuel Aquinas 
Basketball 15 10 
Table Tennis 10 15 
Football 10 15 10 
Badminton 15 10 
Netball 15 10 

This means, with a total of 65 points the CTK Sports Day 2022 Winners are ….

St Mary’s! 

We would like to say a huge congratulations to our fellow teammates at St Mary’s and a very well done to all for the skills, dedication and effort shown towards success! 

Easter Community Day

The last day of the Spring term saw countless activities taking place across the three sites and all in celebration of Easter Community Day! 


ECO: We were pleased to see students incorporating the sixth form’s Eco-friendly ideals into the Easter Community Day by involving themselves in various eco projects that day. One activity involved up-cycling used jam jars and other recyclable masonry to create tea-light lanterns. These were then hand painted, ready to be taken home and used as an eco-friendly alternative to an electric lamp. 
In another mini-Eco Project, students took to the outdoors to hang bird boxes around the sixth form in the hopes of encouraging more bird wildlife on site. The students showed much enthusiasm as they painted and decorated the boxes before picking the perfect locations to hang the new bird homes. 


Cultural: The Easter Community Day continued to be a success with plenty of cultural activities taking place across the sites. This included the

likes of henna hand painting and even live performances in the main hall with renditions of beautifully recited gospel songs. But it didn’t end there. The talent- showcasing continued in the LRC as tactical-minded students took on both peers and staff in a nail-biting chess tournament.

 
Fundraising: The day saw multiple fundraising activities taking place and we couldn’t be more proud of our students for the initiative and generosity shown towards charity work. We were delighted to see students from the ALS department run a sweet stall that raised money for Demelza Hospice, a charity that we have worked with many times in the past supporting the work they do with the families of terminally ill children. 
Another group of students raised money by putting on sporting tournaments whereby entrants would pay a small fee to gain access to the Sports Hall and go head-to-head with an opponent in games such as table tennis and badminton.  
The list of activities was endless and both staff and students alike had great fun, raising over £500 for charity and fully immersing themselves in the spirit of the Easter Community Day!
We would like to thank all staff and students for their commitment to making the day special and for all the hard work they have put in over the past term! 

Realising Opportunities

Aquinas students join the RO Programme with Leicester University

Five learners from CTK Aquinas have been successful in their attempts to join the Raising Opportunities Programme – a programme that seeks to prepare learners for higher education and wider participation. CTK’s partner for the RO (Realising Opportunities) Programme is the University of Leichester and these learners will be guided through the programme by them.  

The learners Alejandro, Rianna, Rachel-Gladys, Ashton and Samuel all received the good news recently that they have been accepted onto the course. Once these learners complete the programme (that runs from the start of year 12 into the beginning of year 13) they can hopefully expect to receive reduced grade offers from UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) when they get to apply. 

Our congratulations go out to these learners, and we hope that they find the course both informative and educational. We would also like to thank our Careers and Partnerships team for orchestrating this programme in collaboration with Leicester University. 

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training

Aquinas students get training in Mental Health

Learners at CTK Aquinas took part in a youth mental health first aid course run by MHFA (Mental Health First Aid) recently. The course sought to teach learners how to identify, understand and help others who may be experiencing a mental health issue. 

These learners will now go on to be the student wellbeing ambassadors for the sixth form and use what they have learnt to promote good mental health practices and procedures. We are excited and proud to have learners who reflect our values and are as passionate as we our about mental health. 

This training has been organised as part of our wellbeing initiative, put in motion by our wellbeing committee. Here at CTK, we understand that the wellbeing of everyone in our community is paramount in ensuring positive development and progression, and we realise the importance of good mental wellbeing. This is just one process of many that our wellbeing committee is currently working on, as well as trips, competitions and more. 

Researchers in Schools Forum

CTK Aquinas is delighted to host the “Researchers in School” forum, organised by both Eton College and Christ the King Sixth Forms on Wednesday the 23rd of March between 1-4pm. The forum includes a number of external speakers offering talks on a variety of subjects including developing a reflective culture in schools and a reflective look at using online courses between schools, to name a few.

To find out more information on the event, please read over the document here. The Event is open to all parents/guardians who wish to attend.

We hope to see you there!

LGBT+ History Month

CTK Celebrates a month looking at the History the LGBT+ Community

We welcomed the celebration of LGBT+ History Month here at Christ the King this February with a variety of activities and displays which sought to illuminate some of the amazing actions members of the LGBT+ community have performed throughout history. 

In the LRC (Learning Resource Centre) we have had wonderful displays installed detailing both prominent historical figures from the LGBT+ community as well as more recent individuals who have achieved something remarkable. Many people have found these displays incredibly interesting and thought provoking. An example of someone on the board was Nicola Adams, who was the first openly LGBT+ woman ever to win an Olympic gold medal in the boxing competition. 

The LGBT+ Society, a student-led group acting as a safe and secure environment to talk about issues relating to the LGBT+ community, has also been discussing LGBT+ history, as well as the positive changes to civil rights in recent history and the landmark events that led to where we are now, including the 1969 ‘Stonewall Riots’ and origins of the Pride in England to name a few. 

Our 10:10 reflection at the start of the month was also dedicated to LGBT+ history month, which emphasised the importance of respecting human identity, dignity and worth, and that whoever we are, our self-understanding can be affected by our past, present and future. 

CTK is an establishment that reveres acceptance and respect, and we are delighted to be able to be able to shine a light on the importance of the LGBT+ community and the positive impact they have made in making our world a better place. 

Social Action

A week of Social Action activities take place at CTK Aquinas!

At Christ the King we are big proponents of social action in our communities and are regularly running events and activities for the benefit of charities in and around our local communities. Below are a few of the recent social action events that have been taking place across the CTK (Christ the King) sites. 

Recently learners and staff were encouraged to wear expressive clothing in aid of “Dress to Express Day”, a day that aims to raise both money and awareness for the charity Young Minds, a charity that seeks to ensure all young people and their families receive mental health support, if they need it. This day raised over £350 for the charity and cannot wait to see this money put to good use. 

In a similar vein, students also took part in “Onesie Day”, which saw learners attend their sixth form in all manner of humorous onesies. This event was run by the learners themselves and was in aid of Mindout, a charity focusing on improving the mental health of people in the LGBT+ community. 

Learners also ran a heart-shaped lollypop stand in the canteen, with the profits going towards the charity Tender, a charity whose mission is to help young people who are the victims of domestic abuse. This was another charity selected by the learners. The total sales managed to raise a fantastic amount of £70 for the charity. 

The grand total from these events was over £400, and we are so immensely proud of our learners for running events like these, whilst simultaneously committing to their studies. It demonstrates how deeply they care about social action and how much making a difference means to them. 

We eagerly await the opportunity to inform you of more acts of charity and social action occurring around the sixth forms in the future. 

Easter Appeal

CTK launches Easter Appeal fundraiser

Christ the King is proud to announce the launch of our Easter Appeal, a fundraiser seeking to raise both gifts and money towards two amazing charities, CAFOD and Demelza.  

CAFOD (Catholic Aid for Overseas Development) is a Catholic organisation that aims to assist anyone in the world who requires aid. Demelza is a charity that assists families with young members suffering from terminal and very serious illnesses. 

The appeal is set to run throughout lent and encompasses a variety of social action initiated by our learners, including a chocolate Easter egg appeal, a GoFundMe donation page and a milkshake stand amongst many more. We are honoured to be organising such an event and are excited to be able to update you once we have news on the status of the appeal. 

If you would like to donate items or funds to the appeal, you can do so in a variety of ways: 

  • If you would like to donate monetary funds, please follow the link which will take you to our GoFundMe page, where we are raising money for the two charities. 
  • If you would like to donate chocolate eggs to the appeal, please bring them to either the chaplaincy, or the reception where they will be collected by the team. 

We would like to take this moment to thank our fantastic chaplaincy team for organising the appeal and continuing to facilitate and run events throughout its course. 

EU Council Talk

Aquinas hosts EU council talk

We were delighted to host a virtual talk from the EU council at CTK Aquinas recently. The talk was well attended by students from a range of A Level subjects including Modern Foreign Languages, Politics, Geography and Sociology. 

Mr Bonello, a Lawyer and Linguist gave us an insightful presentation on the role of the European Union and where the European Council sits amongst the other various European institutions. 

The session was very informative and students left with a deeper knowledge into EU policy-making, including how laws are voted upon and the difference between the EU Council and the Council of Europe.  

Events such as these are part of the CTK initiative to further motivate our students to participate in the wider curriculum as well as their chosen subjects. It is very rewarding to see that this encouragement has resulted in so many students formulating opinions on political matters and broadening their scope of knowledge outside of their studies. 

Holocaust memorial day

CTK hosts talks for holocaust survivors

Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) is marked each year on 27th January – the anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration and death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau. On this day, schools, communities and faith groups across the UK join together in national and local events to commemorate the victims of the Holocaust and of even more recent genocides. 

Deacon Javier, our Lay Chaplin, led a Holocaust Memorial service at each site which staff and students attended.  The service was extremely moving and highlighted the Nazi Persecution and the genocides that followed in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur, in the hope that there may be One Day in the future with no genocide. 

We were privileged enough to host a talk with two holocaust survivors, Paul Sved and Ivan Shaw, who both have fascinating stories about their experiences as young children living in cities under Nazi control. Both speakers, now in their 80’s, gave up their time to speak to CTK lower sixth students as part of the Sixth Forms 10:10 programme. Their stories were extremely moving and highlighted the sadness in their childhood and their victimisation of Nazi persecution. The pair went on to give a recap of their oppression, the time spent away from their families as young children, the day they finally managed to escape Nazi occupation and how they remarkably went on to lead normal happy lives. 

Our students were fascinated by their stories and amazed by the bravery of the survivors. One student said “The testimonies gave me a very harsh yet interesting insight into life during the Holocaust. We’ve heard from historians but not often the survivors and it allowed me to understand the atrocities that were taken upon the people of that time and helped me understand the misfortune they went through. Even with all his discomfort he prevailed and taught a valuable lesson on how two very different views can affect the whole of human history.” – Kanye Cross-Gordon, CTK student. 

We would like to say a big thank you to the Holocaust Educational Trust for arranging this session with us and to the incredible guest speakers for sharing their memorable stories with us at this time. 

Environmental and Green Group

CTK Eco Group Implements Exciting Ideas and Talks

The work of our CTK Eco Group continues to go from strength to strength. The Eco committee meet regularly to take forward the Sixth Form’s Green agenda. In a recent meeting they discussed changes they could make to reduce our impact on the environment. Recently, the group have been looking at the impact of meat farming and the damage that such heavily laboured factories can do to the environment. 

The outcome of these meetings has inspired students to consider eating alternative foods that have little-to-no impact on the environment, as it helps reduce the impact too much meat consumption has on both the human body and the environment. 

The reps launched a competition across the three CTK sites, which looked at identifying meat free dishes that each site wanted to take forward. Entrants had to plan a recipe for their tastiest meat-free dish which would be cooked in the canteen. We await to hear the outcome, but recipes included: vegetarian Pizza, meat free chilly, cauliflower curry along with Quorn based alternatives to traditional meat-based recipes. 

The sixth form also received a visit from the Education and Engagement Officer for the Big City Butterfly Project. This is an exciting new project that aims to inspire Londoners to discover butterflies and moths, and connect them with nature and their local green spaces. As well as offering habitat management advice, they have also offered to run a butterfly ID workshop for staff and students. This is an opportunity to gain skills and knowledge to help increase butterfly monitoring across the project area. 

Oxbridge University Challenge comes to Lewisham

CTK Alumni return for Lewisham University Challenge

CTK Aquinas were delighted to host Lewisham University Challenge’s “Meet the Oxbridge students” event earlier this month.   

Facilitated by university representatives of Queen’s College (Oxford) and Gonville & Caius College (Cambridge), two CTK alumnae, Lorena and Temi, along with other Oxbridge students, shared their experiences of studying at Oxbridge with Year 12 students from CTK and across the Lewisham borough.   

They spoke about their experiences of the application and interview process, managing the academic workload once they started their course, life in college – both academic and social, and the many opportunities offered through clubs and societies at Oxford and Cambridge.     

These open talks enabled students to get an insight into what everyday life is like at Oxford and Cambridge as well as finding out useful information to help with their applications. The event was very inspiring for our Year 12 students that are considering applying to Oxbridge. The success of this event is testament to our strong relationships with our alumni students and our ongoing efforts to encourage current learners to aim high. 

Students Go Skating!

A Level French students take a trip to Greenwich for a spot of lunch and some ice-skating fun!

Thanks to the Jack Petchey Achievement Award received by year 13 French student Emmanuella Owusu Ansah, the entire A Level French cohort were invited to a day out Ice Skating at the Queen’s House in Greenwich followed by lunch at Café Rouge. The Jack Petchey Achievement Award was created to celebrate the achievements of young people across London and Essex and to reward such achievements.

Set in a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the rink was surrounded by iconic architecture and some of the best views in London.

The Ice Skating was thoroughly enjoyed by the students. They relished in being outdoors, in each others company with lots of laughs and no broken bones! Some of our students were beginners but showed excellent progress in mastering their new skills. Others were professionals and took the opportunity to display their hidden talent.

Congratulations to Emmanuella on her award and thank you for sharing the award with your fellow French students!

Bank of England Work Experience

Alumnus Melvin Lopez-Corleone starts Work Experience Programme at The Bank of England

We were delighted to be contacted by CTK Alumni Melvin Lopez-Corleone, who now works at The Bank of England (BoE) as the Senior Regulatory Technology Specialist.

Melvin works within the Innovation area of the Prudential Regulation Authority. The division is at the forefront of researching, applying and delivering advanced technology focused solutions. This includes leading the implementation of Regulatory Technology (RegTech) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) initiatives with a focus on regulation and supervision.

If that wasn’t enough, Melvin has now created a paid Work Experience Programme which he is very passionate about and is eager to introduce to CTK students. The programme, starting in January 2022 aims to give 10 students the opportunity to learn new skills and take on a 4-week paid role in a highly prestigious setting.

With a focus on Business, Maths, Economics and IT students, the programme will include a year-long mentorship with a senior member from the BoE. The application process involves creating a short video, describing why they would make a good candidate for the programme.

Melvin will be reaching out to students via Teams in classes this week to speak to them in more-depth about the programme and urge them to complete their applications by the closing date of December 31st.

Books To Africa

Aquinas makes its first “readcycling” donation!

What is Books2Africa? Books2Africa is a UK registered charity that is improving the quality of education in Africa through the provision of books, computers and educational resources that enable individuals and communities to acquire knowledge and achieve their full potential in a globalized world. The charity collects and ships donated educational resources from individuals and organisations in the UK, reducing waste and increasing ‘readcycling’. 

We are thrilled to have made this new charity connection by donating hundreds of no-longer used textbooks. The donation brings us a great sense of gratitude and pride because not only does it mean we are helping impoverished and disadvantaged schools in Africa, we are also doing our bit for the environment by promoting recycling or “readcycling” as it’s known.

Supporting charities is a huge part of the CTK ethos, so we hope to continue this work in the coming months and make even more donations by sorting through our unused textbooks and even IT tech that we no longer use. You can read more about the great work that Books2Africa have been doing by visiting https://books2africa.org/

Open Day

Success at the CTK Aquinas November Open Day!

We were delighted to kick start our month of Open Days with the Aquinas Open Day taking place on Saturday 6th November. We were joined by a vast amount of prospective students.

The student ambassadors worked tirelessly and professionally to chauffeur individual groups of prospective students around the building as they answered questions and showed our guests to the relevant subject areas. 

Staff also played a key role on the day, interacting with interested students and taking them through the subject course. Some subject ambassadors remained in their classrooms to support their teachers and give the prospective students a real feel of what it would be like to study A Levels by giving them an introduction to the classroom facilities as well as showcasing their fantastic work. 

Each hour-long tour ended with a talk with the site principal Ms Holly Power, as well as Executive Principal Shireen Razey. During these talks, both students and parents were given an in-depth presentation on the full range of subjects and opportunities that Aquinas has to offer. 

We were overwhelmed by the wealth of complementary and positive feedback relayed by our visitors. We would like to say thank you to all the students and staff who contributed to the success of the event and again, thank you to the delightful prospective students and parents who attended. 

Penguin Talks

Penguin Random House UK launch ‘Black Joy’

We were delighted to help promote the recent launch of Black Joy with Penguin Random House UK and Speakers 4 Schools, last week. Penguin Talks is a programme of free, creative talks for young people, giving them the opportunity to both hear from, and directly question, a world-renowned thinker, writer or influential figure from our family of authors.

The aim of Penguin Talks is to help equip young people for the future by introducing a new generation of readers to new ideas and perspectives, and broadening their understanding of issues which speakers feel to be particularly prevalent for this generation.

We were joined by contributors, collaborators and editors; Timi S, Charlie Brinkhurst-Cuff, Sofia Akel and Athian Akec. Our students thoroughly enjoyed the experience and got a great insight into the creation and reason behind ‘Black Joy’ as well as a free copy of the book.

Lewisham Young Mayor

Student, Ana Rodrigues runs for Lewisham Young Mayor

We caught up with Ana, who is currently studying A level Politics, Religious Studies and Sociology and wants to see change being made in her borough for young people through her passion, politics. We wanted to find out what inspired her to join the campaign, here’s what she had to say: 

“One of of the things that inspired me is, as a young person is, I’ve always been very involved in politics, I’ve always tried my best to get involved and make a difference. That’s the biggest thing that inspired me is I want to make a difference in Lewisham, I’d like to be a voice for young people.

Interviewer: If you were to be become Young Mayor of Lewisham, what would you hope to achieve?

Ana: I think that politics is important and that everyone should be involved in it, especially young people, as we are the future of the UK and of Lewisham. I’d like to get young people involved, making sure that theyre taught about politics so that as the next voters, they can have an informed vote.

I’m also really focusing on an eco-friendly borough, tackling child poverty as well as cyber-bullying. Those are my three main campaihn promises, but my most important campaign promise is to listen to young people and hear what they have to say about Lewisham.

Interviewer: What do you friends and family think of your campaign?

Ana: All my friends and family are extremely proud of me. Its been such a good experience. Whatever happens, happens but whatever the outcome I jus hope that I make everyone proud.

Interviewer: What do you hope to do after CTK and how do you studies help align your career goals?

Ana: After I leave CTK I hope to go to Oxford University to study Politics and hopefully one day you’ll see me in parliament! One of my career aspirations is to become a diplomat. That’s something I’m extremely interested in, I speak several different languages. Languages and Politics are 2 of my main passions.

My subjects compliment each other and set me up set me up well for my future as they’re all based around people and will get me to my dream career.

Bike to School Week

CTK Aquinas gets cycling!

Cycling is a brilliant way to combine getting outdoors with getting some exercise! We love the fact that so many members of staff are setting a notable example for our students by showing concern for the environment and swapping four wheels for two! In support of #BikeToSchoolWeek, we have been catching up with staff and students that travel into college via bicycle. Here’s what they have had to say about their daily commutes: 

Mr Forster said: “I find cycling very therapeutic. It is great for the environment as well as my physical and mental health.” 

Miss Stiasny said: “I love cycling to work! It wakes me up in the morning and gives me an extra spring in my step for the day ahead!” 

Ms Power said: “I am lucky enough to cycle through two London parks on my way to work. I like being able to get some exercise at the start and end of my day and clear my mind during my commute.” 

We’ve been speaking to Mr Downes, who loves to cycle to work.

He says, “I’m lucky enough to cycle to two sites, with very different routes. I love cycling because it helps with mindfulness and wellbeing as well as being great exercise!”

COP26 Climate change mock event

Students get debating

We were delighted to be invited to this year’s COP26 Mock event hosted by St Pauls Girls School in Hammersmith. We were very proud to see our student reps advocating in the student Mock #COP26 conference as part of the UK Schools Sustainability Network (USSN) and the London Schools Eco Network (LSEN). The event was based on Climate Change and how different countries have progressed to fight this following the 2015 Paris agreement. 

In this Mock conference our students gathered facts and evidence to debate how far some countries around the world have come in their fight to lower the global warming crisis. 

Arguments were made in favour for various countries including contributions made by Australia to target and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 26% – 28% below 2005 levels by the year 2030. 

What is COP26?

For nearly three decades the UN has been bringing together almost every country on earth for global climate summits – called COPs – which stands for ‘Conference of the Parties’. In that time climate change has gone from being a fringe issue to a global priority. 

The importance of the 2015 Paris agreement 

COP21 took place in Paris in 2015. For the first time ever, something momentous happened: every country agreed to work together to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees and aim for 1.5 degrees, to adapt to the impacts of a changing climate and to make funds available to deliver on these aims. 

For nearly three decades the UN has been bringing together almost every country on earth for global climate summits – called COPs – which stands for ‘Conference of the Parties’. In that time climate change has gone from being a fringe issue to a global priority. 

Fantastic French Start!

A wonderful trip and movie magic

A level French students started the term with a visit to the French Institute in London. They went to Ciné Lumière to watch Annette – the new film of Leos Carax. In addition to being a fun day out and a great opportunity for the Year 1 students to meet the Y2 cohort and vice-versa, this outing was aimed at supporting the students in their academic studies, especially the cultural and linguistic aspects of the course. We cover the topic of Cinema as part of the A level curriculum and this was a fantastic opportunity to view the work of Leos Carax with Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard in the lead roles.

The film was presented in the Cannes Film Festival 2021 official competition, Annette won Leos Carax (Les Amants du Pont-Neuf, Holy Motors) the Best Director award this year. We all had a great time and the weather allowed for a picnic with French baguettes and delicacies in Hyde Park. Not quite the South of France but the next best thing for now!

Oprah Year 12 student said: “Today was really nice and fun. I liked the French Institute and seeing the place; it looked like a palace! It was also fun talking to the 2nd years as they were very friendly. The movie was great! The plot twist was amazing and the way it ended was so annoying! There needs to be a part 2.” Emmanuella Year 13 student said: “I quite enjoyed the movie, and it helped me to notice how script or movie narratives may differ within countries. I doubt I would ever see s

CTK Staff Conference- A Time to Change

The climate is a common good, belonging to all and meant for all – Pope Francis (Laudato Si 2015). 

This year’s annual CTK Staff Conference on environment and sustainability focused on how as a community CTK can continue our journey from an “emerging “to “established” sixth form in promoting environmental sustainability, deepening our understanding of environmental issues and reducing our Carbon footprint.  

We were delighted that Steve Frampton, FE/HE Climate Commissioner launched our conference this academic year. The conference was opened with an overview and discussion of our role as a sixth form in tackling the climate crisis. 

The day was packed with guest speakers, experts in their fields on sustainability and environmental issues. 

Two speakers from C40 cities took part, Andrea Fernández and Aaron Kiely. Around the world, C40 cities are taking bold climate action, leading the way towards a healthier and more sustainable future. They drive the global climate action agenda by creating unique opportunities for cities to come together and showcase their achievements and underscore what needs to be done to secure a greener, healthier and more prosperous future for all citizens. 

Andrea Fernández introduced the science of climate change, its impact and the importance of the global climate conference in Glasgow in November. This followed a discussion on how to maximise the opportunity of COP26 for our sixth form. 

Aaron Kiely, Senior Campaigns Manager for Youth Initiative at C40 Cities, led a discussion on how youth around the world are engaged and what are the key issues for young people, followed by a discussion on how CTK could engage students on this topic. 

Our approach adopted to sustainability at CTK is based on engagement, education, communication and involvement and our second keynote speaker Charlotte Bonner, National Head of Education for Sustainable Development (ETF), discussed what is ESD, the current ESD landscape in FE and how we can embed sustainability in our learners’ experience and also within our community. 

Deacon Javier and Susan Kambalu from CAFOD  presented ‘Caring for our environment’. They explained the work of CAFOD and the call by Pope Francis inviting everyone to take seriously the need to care for creation. Susan explored why we are called by Pope Francis to care for our common home, through sharing the work of CAFOD and providing us with practical actions and resources to help us respond to “the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor” (Laudato Si’ 49). 

The CTK Environmental Green Group have this year focused on developing a 10-point Environment plan. We were excited to be able to launch this to our CTK Community. All members of the CTK community are encouraged to contribute to the CTK 10-point environment and sustainability endeavour, working collectively and individually to promote the common good and to model attitudes through the way we act. These breakout sessions will provide an opportunity to attend two workshops on how we can make a change by following our CTK 10-point Environment plan. 

Our afternoon session heralded an opportunity to listen to our own CTK researchers as they presented our sixth annual Teach Meet. We are always encouraged by their generosity in sharing their pedagogical reflections and research. 

Evening of Celebration

We held a remote evening of celebration at the end of the academic year to highlight the amazing hard work done by our students despite the tough year we have all had!

The cross site event highlighted the hard work and achievements at each and every site across the wide range of subjects we offer by both students and all staff.

Below is a selection of images and messages from staff and students at the end of year celebrations:

Subjects and Winners

– Art & Design – PhotographyJoy Sampson, Fine Art Tiyane Alcide, Graphic DesignTanaka Mhakayakora

– Business- Sonal Ravichandran

– ICT- Sidra Baig

– English Language & Literature- Jada Buisson

– Mathematics- Callis Grant

– Politics- Binnette Grant

– Psychology- Hammed Agboluaje

CTK students’ artwork featured in SFCA National News Exhibition

The Sixth Form Association (SFCA) launched a national art exhibition this week, featuring work from CTK students. Entitled ‘Fake News’ the exhibition showcases students’ creative interpretation of the Fake News theme and their reflections on how hard it can be to distinguish fact from fiction.

More than 250 students from 58 colleges submitted their artwork for the exhibition, which runs from 1st to 22 July.  All pictures can be viewed at the SFCA gallery website here.

Art work from numerous Christ the King Sixth Form students has been included in the online exhibition;

‘Fake News’ by Jessica Benjamin, an A Level Photography student

‘Mid Cap Value Equity’ by Mya Scott, studying A Level Graphic Communication

‘Monitor’ by Amrit Khaira, an A Level Fine Art student

‘Schrödinger’s Cat’ by Rimmini Cameron who is studying BTEC  Extended Diploma Art & Design

‘Segregation’ by Destiny Kiberu, an A Level Graphic Communication student

‘Surveillance’ by Nathan Osei- Prempeh an A Level Graphic Communication student

‘Textn’ by Victoria Pansu who is studying A Level Graphic Communication

‘we’llwatchtheworldburn’ by Matilda Millbank, an A Level Graphic Communication student.        

 Bill Watkin, Chief Executive of the Sixth Form Colleges Association, said:  “The Fake News exhibition is a celebration of the arts and a recognition of the excellence in sixth form colleges, which are a vital supply pipeline of talented artists. But it also highlights how young people feel about having to navigate the vast amount of news and information that is available in the modern world, and at the same time, to discern what is the truth. Art has always played an important role in social and political commentary, and the students featured in Fake News have shown they have the talent to communicate their feelings about this important subject in a powerful and effective way”.

More than 250 students from 58 colleges submitted their artwork for the exhibition, which runs from 1st to 22 July.  All pictures can be viewed at the SFCA gallery website here.

The SFCA will be promoting the exhibition online using the hashtag #6thFormArt2021

CTK Aquinas student nominated for Lewisham Mayor Award

Amy Ohiomoba nominated for supporting GCSE Maths students during lockdown

Amy, an 18 year old A Level Biology, Psychology and Maths student at CTK Aquinas, a selective A Level Sixth Form in Brockley, came up with the idea on her own to set up free Maths tuition for Secondary School students who had fallen behind during lockdown, when education moved remotely. Amy is a keen A Level Maths student who felt she knew the Maths GCSE specification really well and wanted to help students who needed booster sessions to go over topics that they had not been able to learn or had fallen behind in.

Amy felt the sessions were important for young people whose parents could not afford additional tuition. Amy decided to promote the free Maths tuition sessions on her Snapchat story at the beginning of every week. Then every Friday, she chose four new students from those that contacted her, to join her on free Zoom sessions, which she hosted. She quickly gained more students from more and more Secondary Schools wanting GCSE Maths tuition, as word of mouth spread.

Amy set this tuition up completely of her own accord and gave her own personal time to help these students, as she felt passionate about helping young people who were finding learning difficult during lockdown. She put a lot of her time into planning lessons and responding to the topics that students wanted help with.

Amy says; “I’m thrilled to have been nominated for a Lewisham Mayor’s Award and specially selected to appear in the video. I enjoy helping others and feel privileged knowing that I was able to help so many people. The pupils I helped were always really grateful and appreciative.

I plan to continue with my online Maths tuition in the Summer so I can help even more GCSE Maths students”.

Lesley Davies, Assistant Principal for Character at CTK Aquinas, who nominated Amy said: “Amy is a very kind, caring person, who is always helping others. She is a real role model for CTK Aquinas students and we are so proud of everything she has achieved!”

Amy was specially selected to appear in a video, alongside other shortlisted nominees for the Lewisham Mayor’s award. You can view her video here https://www.iamlewisham.uk/mayors-awards.

Amy will receive a certificate and a badge and as a lasting legacy, her name will be entered into the Mayor’s Awards Book, kept at the Civic Suite in Catford.

Cllr Joan Millbank, Chair Mayor’s Awards Panel 2020 said ‘On behalf of the Mayor and your fellow citizens I wish to thank you most sincerely for your contribution. You help make Lewisham a special borough characterised by neighbourliness, caring and a strong sense of community’.

You can read more about Amy’s story with the following links: https://www.fenews.co.uk/press-releases/62450-ctk-aquinas-student-nominated-for-lewisham-mayors-award

https://www.newsshopper.co.uk/news/19043535.lewisham-mayor-awards-celebrates-response-covid-pandemic/

https://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/13827/catholic-school-pupil-nominated-for-lewisham-mayor-award

Partnership Links at Christ the King Sixth Forms

At Christ the King Sixth Forms, a group of Catholic Sixth Forms in SE London and Kent, we have always placed a strong emphasis on careers guidance and support. 

Our Careers Service specialises in the needs of 16-19 learners and has developed over the years to meet the challenges and the needs of both of our students and that of the local community.

We are well aware, with the impact of Covid19 on employment and on Higher Education, that outstanding careers guidance for young people has never been more important. We are proud at Christ the King Sixth Forms of the strong partnerships we have formed with employers and businesses to support our students in their holistic development, gaining the skill set needed to excel in their future ambitions.

We run an extensive range of strong partnerships with employers, universities and industry to benefit our students and worked quickly to maintain these partnerships remotely during Covid 19.

For example, the CTK Annual Fast Track programme supports students in taking advantage of employer led initiatives with high profile organisations such as Barclays, Capgemini, BT and others.  This training is supported by CTK alumni, Pavita Cooper (founder and Director of More Difference a talent and career insight business) and John Perry (former senior HSBC Group executive).  In a normal year, we would offer the FastTrack programme to 50 year 12 students, however, with the move to holding sessions remotely via MS Teams, up to 110 Year 12 students can now reap the benefits of taking part.

At Christ the King Sixth Forms, we recognise the importance of our alumni in acting as role models to our current students and to enable us to build strong bridges with industry links. We develop strong alumni links through our partnership with organisation Think Alumni.  Former CTK alumni Trevor Gomes has set up and runs our highly successful employer linked initiative BT Elevate.  Former CTK Student Trevor now works for BT as a Digital Analyst and has set up the prestigious, over subscribed  scheme with his colleagues. The programme equips students with the skills and experiences needed to excel in both the work place and in higher education.  The move to holding these sessions online during Covid19, too brings benefits, as Trevor and his team are now able to involve US colleagues in the initiative.

At CTK, we also partner closely with charities such as Urban Synergy, who have been able to support students with virtual mentoring at this time.  For example, as a result of taking part in the Urban Synergy scheme this year, CTK student Ava Tamabala was even selected by a panel of senior stakeholders at Refinitiv for a paid internship with them.  Ava’s mentor was the Global Head of Financial Crime & Industry Affairs at Refinitiv and as part of her internship she attended the virtual World Economic Forum at Davos and met with senior stakeholders. As a direct result of this, Ava has written a paper on green crime, which has been published by the Royal United Services Institute (the world’s oldest independent think tank on international defence and security).

CTK’s partnership with Metric Capital, results in three CTK students every year gaining a university scholarship worth £15,000 each.  This partnership is able to make a real difference to the lives of those students.

Nother highly successful partnership with industry is the CTK annual External Speaker Programme, which has an array of over 40 guest speakers taking part each year. Speakers have included Sir Ian Cheshire (Chairman of Barclays), David Thompson (film producer) and Gary Gibbon (Channel 4 News Political Editor).  An unexpected benefit of having moved to the virtual world is that many more high profile people have been able to donate their time.  It has also all allowed us to increase the diversity and range of speakers taking part, for example Judge Peter Herbert O.B.E. speaking to our students from Nigeria. We have strived to maintain diversity within our guest speaker programme, and this year our first guest speaker was Femi Bola (MBE), the first Black Scientist to work for the Medical Research Council in the United Kingdom.

This year, CTK are very proud to have partnered with Eton College, in an exciting project to develop academic resilience at our A Level Centre for Excellence, CTK Aquinas.  Year 12 students have a daily tutorial, currently taking place remotely, which helps to build resilience, this covers areas such as self -efficacy and emotional regulation. At Christ the King Sixth Forms, we believe in the development of the whole student, which is enshrined in our motto ‘ut viteam habent’. With the challenges presented to us all by Covid19 it’s more important than ever that our students are able to develop the skills they need to succeed. The strong partnerships and influential mentors we can introduce our students to at CTK, gives them unprecedented access to unlock the door to the skills, networking opportunities and the support needed to succeed in higher education or employment and to flourish in their chosen career.

Private firm’s £250k funding helps disadvantaged students go to university

Since Christ the King Sixth Forms teamed up with private investment firm Metric Capital to provide scholarships to students in need, 15 young people have realised their dream to go to university. David Pearson, Director of Wider Learning, Careers and Partnerships at CTK, writes about how the partnership, which is thought to be the first of its kind between a college and a business, works…

When I first met CTK student Trevor Gomes, he was an aspirational, high-performing sixth form pupil with a promising career ahead of him. But he faced some significant barriers. 

Trevor wanted to be the first person in his family to go to university but finances were a challenge for him. Like many young people, he worked part-time to help support his family and would need to increase his hours to fund his additional costs – fees, textbooks, a laptop or computer, and the daily cost of commuting to campus from his parent’s home in south London.  

At best his university experience would be a juggling act between studying and paying for it and he would still graduate massively in debt. At worst, the financial barriers would become so overwhelming that he might be forced to give up or not go at all.

University is meant to be an exciting, challenging, fun and rewarding experience. Yet figures released earlier this year found that two thirds of universities have seen a rise in student drop-out rates. Students from disadvantaged backgrounds are more likely to give up their university courses within 12 months.

Christ the King is a group of three sixth forms in southeast London. The majority of our students are from the London borough of Lewisham which is the 31st most deprived Local Authority in England and among the worst four boroughs for educational outcomes. Around 68% of our students come from a deprived area.

Yet almost 90% of our level 3 students go on to university, including Russell Group institutions. A report by The Sutton Trust placed Christ the King sixth forms in the top 6% of schools and colleges nationally for university progression.

Academic achievement is important, but in addition to this we also aim to develop our students as a whole person – to increase their ambition, opportunities and employability so that they progress to university, graduate and enjoy a successful career.

To do this we have designed a range of aspiration-raising programmes. One of our most innovative and successful to date has been our partnership with Metric Capital.

Creating new firsts

We were introduced to Metric Capital, a private capital firm, through CTK student Seni Fawehinmi. Seni met the firm’s Managing Partner, John Sinik, through an American mentoring scheme called Big Brother, which briefly set up in the UK.

They stayed in touch and five years later Seni came to study at CTK before going to university and embarking on a successful career in finance. He told John about the challenges that many of his fellow students faced. Like him, they wanted to go to university but there were a lot of economic sacrifices that they, and their families, would have to make in order to do so. When he heard this, John wanted to help.

After meeting with our Executive Principal Shireen Razey to discuss ideas, they developed the Metric Capital Scholarship Programme, to provide financial aid for academically able students from deprived backgrounds with university aspirations. It is thought to be the first partnership of its kind between a college and a business.

Every year up to three students are chosen for the programme and given £15,000 each – £5,000 a year. Since the partnership was formed in 2014, 15 students have been awarded the scholarship, totalling more than £250k in funding from Metric Capital.

The aim of the scholarship is to cover living expenses, to enable students to focus on their studies and not have to work full time while trying to achieve academic excellence. It also helps to pay for expensive items like textbooks and laptops to facilitate learning.

There is no expectation for students to work at Metric Capital after graduating. However, the firm encourages them to keep in touch and hosts regular events where current and former scholarship students can get together to share their experiences and successes.

Putting partnership into practice

Rolling out the programme was fairly straightforward and communication between the college and Metric Capital has been key to ensuring a successful partnership.

John relies on us to select the right students for the scholarship and we do this based on academic achievement, aspirations and financial background. When we introduce our students to the Metric Capital team, they already know that each one is academically strong and in need. That means that the vast majority of the students they meet are awarded the scholarship, helping to reduce the disappointment of not being chosen.

At interview, John and his team are looking to understand each student’s motivation and to make sure they know that there’s an element of responsibility attached to the scholarship. Students must achieve a certain academic standing to continue to the next year and they are expected to provide a termly report to Metric Capital.

The main challenge for us has been selecting the students. There are many who need, and deserve, support, so it can be difficult for us to choose the candidates. Ultimately, we look for students who have experienced challenges – personally, financially or both – have improved academically and have shown dedication to their studies.

Seeing the results

So far all but one scholarship student has either graduated from university or is still studying. Not only has the funding enabled them to go to university, it has helped to enrich their experience, graduate with less debt and go on to thrive in their careers, in areas such as consulting, accountancy and computer science.

It has been incredibly rewarding for us to see the progression of the students who have successfully completed the programme. One of them is Trevor Gomes.

After being awarded the Metric Capital scholarship, Trevor went to the University of Westminster to study Business Management in 2015. He graduated with a first-class degree and was the highest achiever on his course out of 500 students. He then joined BT, where he now works as a Transformation Analyst in the Transformation Project Team. He is also a 5G Transformation Leader for EE.

Trevor, now 23, is a member of Christ the King’s Partnership Board, helping to steer our partnerships strategy. In October, he launched his own skills development programme, ELEVATE, with support from BT, which aims to equip our students with the skills, knowledge and experience required for the world of work and higher education. So far 14 of our students have benefitted from the face to face ELEVATE programme and its new virtual webinar series is aiming to reach more than 1,000 students. 

Trevor’s motivation is clear – he wants to help young people, just as he was helped. 

For other colleges or sixth forms considering a similar partnership, I would say that it has been a hugely successful and rewarding programme to be involved in. My advice would be to keep in close contact with the students during the course of their studies, and to make sure someone is there to offer further support if needed.

Keep in regular contact with your partner too and provide opportunities for them to be involved in the college. For example, John is a member of our Partnership Board and attends regular meetings. This enables him to see what’s happening at the sixth form and the current challenges that our students are facing. 

Stay in touch with your alumni, encourage them to remain involved in college life and to give something back by helping current students. Our alumni sit on our Partnership Board, visit the campus to give motivational talks, offer mentoring support and provide new links to employers and this works exceptionally well to raise aspirations.

Future plans

We are looking forward to continuing our successful partnership with John and Metric Capital in the future and having the opportunity to see even more of our students achieve great things as a result of this scholarship. 

Our Partnership Board, which is made up of successful alumni, business representatives and employer partners, meets regularly to explore other ways that we can use partnerships like this to benefit our students, whether that’s financially, through developing employability skills or by providing mentoring or other support.

For example, our Fast Track Programme provides a two-day employability coaching programme and the opportunity to gain experience of a corporate working environment and forge links with leading organisations such as Santander, Barclays and BT. We also work with local charity Urban Synergy to host inspirational mentoring events which bring together a wide range of professionals to offer support and guidance.

Our Barclays RISE programme provides skills development opportunities and insight into working in professional industries. And our External Speaker Programme brings together guest speakers who are experts in their field across a range of industries.  Engaging with businesses helps to provide a breadth of excellent opportunities for students. As we have found, there are many different and innovative ways that successful partnerships can enable students to realise their dreams.

Interview with CTK student Temi who achieved AAA* and is now studying at Cambridge University.

Temi says that her last-minute decision to join CTK has really paid off – after being inspired to apply to Cambridge University and being awarded a CTK £15,000 scholarship.

Temi had originally planned to join her school sixth form along with her friends. However, on GCSE results day she was told that her school was unable to offer her the A Level subject combination she wanted, due to timetabling issues.

She explains: “Although I had planned to stay on at school sixth form, I had done some research into other options and I liked the fact that Christ the King was an independent sixth form – that the whole college – all the teaching, resources and support, was focused on year 12s and 13s.”

Making friends easily

Temi enrolled at CTK to study A Levels in Media, Sociology and English Literature. She was a little nervous as she knew she wouldn’t know anyone there, and it also meant a one-hour journey to and from college from her home on the Greenwich/Plumstead border. However, she says the fact that no one knew each other helped her settle in and make new friendships easily.

She says: “I have made a lot of good friends. There were quite a lot of us who hadn’t joined the college in existing friendship groups – everyone went in feeling the same way. We were all in the same situation and so no one felt excluded. One of the best things has been being part of the Scholarship Graduate Programme (SGP) – which is for students with good GCSE results. It was a great way for me to meet other people who were also ambitious and motivated – we all wanted to stay working on our EPQ til 5pm! It was easy to bond with other people who were just as excited about their studies.

Inspiration to apply to Oxbridge

“When I started CTK, applying to Oxford or Cambridge was something that I had thought about but I just didn’t feel like it was within my reach. On enrolment day, I was told straight away that because of my GCSE results, applying to Oxbridge was something I could look at. I brushed it aside. It didn’t feel achievable.

The moment that changed everything was when I attended an alumni evening for SGP students. It gave me the amazing opportunity to speak to past CTK students who had progressed to Oxford and Cambridge. That was the moment I realised it was something I really wanted to do and something I could achieve if I wanted to. It changed my whole mindset.

From there I went on arranged college visits to both Oxford and Cambridge which inspired me further. On the coach back from Oxford, I got talking to one of my teachers, Miss Nadori about Anthropology. Having that conversation with her made me realise how much more there is to studying as opposed to just studying to get a job. I felt taken seriously as a peer as well as a pupil.

Another key point in my journey was a summer session with two Oxford and Cambridge students. They took me through the application process – how you choose your college and accommodation, and how to write an amazing personal statement. I took so much from that session and so much from the advice from those young ladies. If I hadn’t gone to that session I probably wouldn’t have applied. They both came from state schools – so hearing from them what you can do to stand out and how it feels going in as someone from a state school was just what I needed. It felt like I could identify with them and I felt reassured that I would fit in.

I also received an awful lot of support from Miss Brack, my English teacher and form tutor, Mr Peak, the careers advisor, Miss Nadori and Mr Pearson. One of the great things about CTK is that because it is a group of three sixth forms, I benefited from support from staff across all 3 sites.

I was also part of a booster programme led by Mr Pearson. It was one of the best programmes I have ever been part of and focused on writing my CV, job applications and making yourself as appealing as possible on paper. I used those lessons in my application to Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.

Broadening my experience with enrichment activities

Obviously, my time at CTK was very busy because of my academic work, extension activities like the EPQ and I was so invested in the Cambridge application process. Even so, I did netball and boxing as extra-curricular activities when I was able to. Both were brilliant, I learned a lot about exercise from my boxing coach and met some great friends and competed in tournaments with the netball team.

Scholarship Success

Since I found out that I received an offer from Cambridge I had been looking for a scholarship because I don’t necessarily come from a family with a lot of money and didn’t want to put too much strain on my mum. Mr Pearson and Miss Crampton nominated me for CTK’s Metric Capital Scholarship scheme, which gives 3 students scholarships of £15,000 towards their cost of living while at university.

To apply, I had to write no more than 500 words on why I felt I deserved the scholarship and any obstacles that I overcame. This got me thinking about something that held me back for a very long time. I opened up more and really dug into all the health issues that I experienced growing up and how it made me really limit the way I saw myself. My health issues were what led to me discovering a love of reading, and also made me realise that I could write my own stories.

I was interviewed by the man who founded the scholarship scheme – John Sinik, together with the CTK student who he originally mentored and is now a very successful lawyer in the city. Together, they set up this scholarship scheme five years ago.

John is a great, kind man and it was an honour to be interviewed by someone so successful with a master’s from Harvard University, who came from a background that wasn’t affluent too. It was an enjoyable opportunity for me to really open up about what I had experienced and how it strengthened my view and understanding of education and what it is worth.

My love of books and my inspiration

When I was younger, I suffered from this thing called the Atopic Triangle, which is a rare combination of allergies – asthma, eczema, food allergies, and allergies to other things like dust and grass.

For many years I had felt controlled by my medications and not in control of my own body. Discovering drama, music and dance changed that. And then I read an online novel called ‘Becoming Beautiful’ written by a teenage girl. This book honestly changed my life. It made me realise how amazing a book can be.

Before then, I felt like I was drowning and there was no way out for me. When I read this book, I had never felt so understood. That’s why I’m so interested in all the words we use, especially what is going on right now – how damaging words can be – and how much of an impact words can have over others. It’s why I want to study English Literature at Cambridge!

I am also very grateful because I have an amazing mum and two older sisters who are inspirational to me. My mum pulled me up through every situation and continues to be the most inspirational figure in my life. She moved here from Nigeria with my dad to give me and my older sisters a better life.  No matter what happened to her – what she went through, she always faces things with a kind smile. I try to take on her approach as best I can and that has inspired me and kept me going.

My sisters learned from my mum how to face difficult situations – and seeing how hard working they are has motivated me and made me see that I can do everything I set my mind to. My ambition is to inspire other young women in the future. I want to become a writer of both fiction and non-fiction, inspiring other young people to love themselves and their culture. I would also like to start my own theatre company.”

Extra-curricular activities – why are they so important?

Extra-curricular activities are a great way to learn about yourself, build new skills and meet new people. Plus, when it comes to applying for the top universities or apprenticeships with the best employers, being able to talk about your interests and activities outside of your studies can help set you apart from the competition.

At Christ the King Sixth Forms, we are proud of the opportunities our students have to take part in extra-curricular activities and volunteering, develop in-demand skills and reach their academic and professional goals.

Read on to find out more about our broad range of extra-curricular activities and why they are so important.

1. Develop new interests

Life at Christ the King Sixth Forms is about more than just academic achievement. It’s also a time to discover or develop your interests, aptitudes and talents, make new friends and have fun. Whether you study at CTK Aquinas, CTK St Mary’s or CTK Emmanuel, we offer plenty of extra-curricular and enrichment opportunities which allow you to learn something outside your main academic course. From debating to dance, filmmaking to music, you’ll have many chances to get involved and develop new skills that will prove useful long after you have finished your education. Who knows, you could unlock passions you never knew you had!

2. Gain ‘real world’ skills

One of the greatest advantages extra-curricular activities give you are ‘real world’, or ‘soft skills’, including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Goal setting
  • Teamwork
  • Time management
  • Prioritisation
  • Problem solving
  • Analytical thinking
  • Leadership
  • Public speaking

All these are hugely valuable skills that you will be able to use for the rest of your life. For example, at CTK, you can hone your leadership and organisation skills by being elected on to the Student Council and helping to run events throughout the year, including the Leavers’ Prom, Talent Showcase and charity fundraising events. By playing team sport you can develop your teamwork and problem-solving abilities, and by taking part in the debate society you can practice skills in public speaking. What’s more, taking part in extra-curricular activities demonstrates that you can also manage your time effectively by balancing your interests alongside your studies. 

Impress universities

As well as looking at your grades, universities want to know an applicant as a person – what you’re interested in or passionate about. Joining clubs, volunteering, or having a part-time job shows your attachment to your community and desire to help others, as well as your sense of responsibility and time management. On top of the broad range of extra-curricular activities we mentioned above, CTK students also have the opportunity to take part in fantastic field trips and expeditions, which could include locations such as Kenya, Alaska and the Tien Shan Mountains, as well as retreats and pilgrimages. Here are just some of the activities that you can get involved in at CTK:

  • Community projects, such as helping in primary schools and hospitals
  • Residential visits and overseas trips
  • Work shadowing and volunteering experiences
  • Retreats and pilgrimages
  • Expeditions
  • Duke of Edinburgh Award

All of these opportunities provide great experiences to add to your personal statement for university and could help you stand out from other applicants, especially if you are applying to more competitive universities or subjects such as Medicine.

Give back to your community

At Christ the King Sixth Forms, we do a great deal to support charities and all our students take part in our volunteering programme to support our local communities in South East London and Kent. We run an annual charity day and provide many other ways for students to give back, for example by encouraging them to become mentors and ambassadors, supporting local community groups or volunteering their time to charity organisations. When you volunteer, you have the opportunity to meet lots of new people and improve your social skills, as well as making a real difference to others, so it’s win-win!

Improve your wellbeing

Perhaps most importantly, extra-curricular activities can improve your wellbeing by providing a chance to relax, unwind and relieve any study pressures by spending time doing something you enjoy. And if you’re concerned that taking part in extra-curricular activities will hurt your grades you needn’t worry. It’s widely researched and proven that participating in activities you enjoy can increase your brain function, help you concentrate and manage your time better, all of which contribute to higher grades. So, go on, take that much-needed break – you deserve it!

If you have any questions about our extra-curricular and enrichment activities, please get in touch with our friendly Careers team.

Ready to apply?  We are delighted that you are considering making an application to Christ the King Sixth Forms. We welcome students of all faiths, or none, who would like to pursue their sixth form education in a faith context and who support the ethos of this Catholic College. We are currently taking applications to join CTK in September 2021. If you, or someone you know, would like to apply, then you can do so online – just click the button below. Once we receive your application, we will contact you to arrange an interview. Good luck!

How to write a great personal statement for university

Are you thinking of applying to university? If so, you might have heard about the Personal Statement, which is an important part of the UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) application process. Alongside your academic grades, the Personal Statement is used by universities to decide whether to offer you a place on your chosen course.

At Christ the King Sixth Forms, we are proud of our success in helping students from South East London and Kent achieve places at some of the top universities in the country. Currently, almost 90 per cent of CTK students go on to university, including “Oxbridge” (the universities of Oxford and Cambridge) and Russell Group institutions. Read on for our top six tips on writing a winning Personal Statement and give yourself the very best chance of achieving a place at your first-choice university.

1. Start with a plan

Writing your UCAS personal statement can seem like a daunting task, but if you prepare properly and plan out what you want to say before you get started, you’ll have it finished in no time. Before you start writing, it’s a good idea to briefly outline the points you want to make in your personal statement, and make sure you’re answering the questions; what, why and how

  • What do you want to study?
  • Why do you want to study it?
  • How do your skills and past experiences prove this?

The aim of a Personal Statement is to persuade your chosen university that you’re a suitable applicant for their course, so read the course description closely and identify the academic credentials, skills and experience it requires, which will help you to decide what to write about. It can help to write two lists: one detailing what you know about the course you would like to study and why you know it is the right degree choice for you, and the second focusing on why you are the ideal student for that course and university.

2. Do your research

Universities want to see from your Personal Statement that you have done a good amount of research, so make it clear that you have thoroughly researched the course (for example, we recommend attending Open Days, reviewing course literature and talking to current students) and explain why you have made the decision to study it at university. Highlight the subject knowledge you already have and emphasise why you are the kind of student the university is looking for.

At Christ the King Sixth Forms, our work starts to focus on university progression towards the end of Year 12 and our personal tutors and dedicated, in-house Careers team provide support on choosing a degree course and applying to university. Our highly experienced staff work with students on the particular challenges involved in making applications for Oxbridge, Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Medicine, and other highly competitive Higher Education and employment opportunities.

3. Show how you are unique

The best thing about writing a Personal Statement is, it’s a chance to write about YOU! This is your opportunity to show off what’s great about you, your personality and the unique skills and experience you will bring to the course and the university. Go back to the course description and provide plenty of examples of how you fit what the university is looking for. University admissions tutors often read hundreds of Personal Statements every day so try and make yours stand out by providing a couple of anecdotes linked to your experience and interests. Make it personal and try to avoid any generic statements and cliches. If you were to anonymously give your Personal Statement to someone in your friendship group to look at, could they identify it as yours? If they couldn’t, you should take another look at how you could make it more personal.

4. Talk about your extracurricular activities

Whether you study at CTK Aquinas, CTK St. Mary’s or CTK Emmanuel, we offer lots of opportunities for you to build both your academic and extra-curricular credentials. While we put great emphasis on qualifications, hard work, effort, and academic success, we’re about far more than that. From debating to dance, filmmaking to music, you will have many chances to get involved. Our students also have the opportunity to take part in fantastic field trips and expeditions, which could include locations such as Kenya, Alaska and the Tien Shan Mountains, as well as retreats and pilgrimages. All of this can provide great experiences to add to your Personal Statement and help you stand out from other applicants, but remember to relate them back to the course – if they aren’t relevant, don’t include them. You can use the ABC test to see if you are making it relevant:

  • A = Activity: This might be captaining a sports team, or being part of a drama club
  • B = Benefit: This is the skill(s) you have gained from doing the activity
  • C = Course: How the skill will help you to complete the course successfully

5. Be concise and keep it relevant

According to UCAS, a Personal Statement should be no more than 4,000 characters with spaces and needs to fit into 47 lines on the application, so don’t waste space on details that have no relevance to your chosen course. Be specific about why you want to study this degree and how it will aid your future career plans. Show genuine enthusiasm for the subject you want to study. For example, if you are applying for Veterinary Medicine, your passion for animals should be obvious from the outset. Ask yourself the question ‘so what?’ If you can’t think about a reason to talk about a particular skill, the reader will wonder why you’ve mentioned it at all.

6. Check for errors  

Once you’ve drafted your Personal Statement, be sure to check it through carefully for mistakes, then send it to a friend or family member to read through. It’s extremely easy to miss spelling and grammatical errors in your own work, even using a spell-checker, which is why it’s vital to have someone else read through it before you send it off. Ask friends, family, or a teacher to read it and give their honest opinion and try to take their suggested changes on board. Try reading it aloud too – doing this will make it very clear if something isn’t quite right.

If you have any questions about applying to university or need a bit more help and advice, please get in touch with our friendly Careers team.

Ready to apply?  We are delighted that you are considering making an application to Christ the King Sixth Forms. We welcome students of all faiths and of none who would like to pursue their sixth form education in a faith context and who support the ethos of this Catholic College. We are currently taking applications to join CTK in September 2021. If you, or someone you know, would like to apply, then you can do so online – just click the button below. Once we receive your application, we will contact you to arrange an interview. Good luck!

How to shine through the CTK application process

Are you thinking of applying to Christ the King Sixth Forms? Whether you’re applying to CTK Aquinas, CTK St Mary’s or CTK Emmanuel, you might be feeling a little unsure about what you need to do in order to be offered a place on the course of your choice.

Read on for our top five tips to help you shine throughout and give yourself the very best chance of joining Christ the King Sixth Forms – one of the top sixth form colleges for university progression in South East London and Kent.

1. Choose the right course for you

Before you start your college application, do your research and speak to your teachers and the careers adviser in your school to discuss your options.

  • Which subjects are you doing well in at school and enjoy studying?
  • Are you suited to A levels or would you do better on a more vocational course?
  • What are your predicted GCSE grades in each subject?
  • Do you have a particular career in mind, and will any specific qualifications – such as A levels in Chemistry and Biology for Medicine – be needed?

Our Open Days are a great way to learn more about different subjects and the choice of courses on offer.  They will provide you with a chance to meet staff and students, who will be able to tell you more about what it is like to be a student at Christ the King Sixth Forms. Do discuss your application with your parents or carer. Once you’ve narrowed down your choice of subjects and chosen what you want to study, then it is time to make your application.

2. Complete the application form in full

It may sound obvious, but please make sure you complete the online application form in full and don’t miss any sections. The information you provide to us on the form is very important, so take the time to make sure you have entered the details in all the relevant sections and check the form through carefully for spelling errors, mistakes and typos before you submit it.

As a high-achieving Sixth Form, your academic grades are key to achieving a place at Christ the King Sixth Forms, so check that your application meets the admissions criteria for the course(s) you would like to study. Tell us your predicted grades, or the grades you are currently working at in your assessments. This will help us to decide whether CTK could be the right place for you to continue your studies.

A good attendance and behaviour record is also essential to become a part of our CTK community, so you will need to provide a positive reference from your school and explain any special circumstances or challenges you have faced if you have any issues with attendance.

3. Write a killer Supporting Statement

Our application form includes a Supporting Statement section, which is your opportunity to tell us more about you! This is your chance to tell us why you want to join CTK and what you might want to do in the future at university or in your future career.

We also want to learn about you as an individual: your ambitions, the subjects you love, what makes you tick. And don’t forget to tell us about activities or projects you have undertaken in school or outside that weren’t part of your schoolwork. Perhaps you have been involved in a community project, organised a sports club or are a member of a sports team, dance or music group?

Expect to spend some time on your Supporting Statement and ask someone you trust, like a teacher at school or a family member, to read through your draft to provide you with some feedback. Finally, don’t forget to use a spell checker and make sure you proofread your Statement before submitting.

4. Excel in the interview

Once you’ve completed your application form, you’ll be invited to attend an interview either in person or online. As with any interview, aim to be the very best version of yourself by dressing smartly (even if the interview is done via a phone or video call), using good manners and being friendly and polite.

Read the interview invitation carefully and make sure you bring anything you need with you, such as a recent school report or a portfolio of art work if you are applying for an art course. Also, be sure to plan how you will get to the interview if it is at college, and make sure you arrive on time.

You can improve your chances of success in the interview by preparing for it in advance and making notes to use as prompts if you need them. Remember: the interview is a two-way process and is as much a chance for you to find out about CTK as it is about us finding out about you. You might want jot down some questions to ask, which also shows us that you have done some research about Christ the King Sixth Forms and are well organised.

5. Keep up the good work at school

Following your application, we will contact your school for a reference. The reference is a really important part of our admissions process so it’s important that you continue studying hard. Make sure your attendance is good, you’re on time for all your lessons and you keep on top of your homework. All Christ the King Sixth Forms are underpinned by values of mutual respect and positive encouragement, so we will also want to know that you will be able to meet our high standards of behaviour.

If you have any questions about applying to Christ the King Sixth Forms or need a bit more help and advice, please get in touch with our friendly Careers team.

Ready to apply?  We are delighted that you are considering making an application to Christ the King Sixth Forms. We welcome students of all faiths and of none who would like to pursue their sixth form education in a faith context and who support the ethos of this Catholic College. We are currently taking applications to join CTK in September 2021. If you, or someone you know, would like to apply, then you can do so online – just click the button below. Once we receive your application, we will contact you to arrange an interview. Good luck!

Covid Update

START OF THE NEW TERM

Start of Term January 2021 

On 31st December we emailed all students and parents/carers, please check you emails regarding returning to Christ The King in January. 

Please note all BTEC exams will take place as planned.

As you will have probably heard, the Government has recently announced that it is asking Schools/colleges to stagger the return of many students following the Christmas break. Monday 4th January is a staff INSET day with no lessons taking place.  Online teaching will take place for most students from Tuesday 5th January.   In practice this will mean that many students at CTK will take part in their lessons from home using Microsoft Teams and they should not attend Sixth Form. However, our Sixth Forms will remain open to students who: 

Do not have access to a computer or the internet at home 

Are the child of a key worker. 

Government guidance may change so it is important to check your emails and our website for any updates but we expect to restart face to face teaching on site as follows: 

Year 13 (Upper Sixth A Level and Upper Sixth BTEC) Monday 11th January, 

Year 12 students including Level 1 & Level 2 Monday 18th January 

Examinations 

If you are due to have any BTEC examinations in January these will carry on as planned. Please come into College for the times that have been communicated.

Students and parents/carers are asked to check their email accounts for more detailed information. 

Christmas Gift Appeal

Christ the King Sixth Forms has teamed up with the EKC Group in Kent to launch a Christmas Gift Appeal. 

We will be collecting donations of toys or Christmas presents, or donations  to ensure that those in need still get to experience the joy of receiving something special this Christmas.  

Shireen Razey, Principal of Christ the King Sixth Forms says; “Our students are keen to make a difference in the local communities where they live and work, many of which have been effected by the pandemic. Our Sixth Forms do a lot of work supporting charities, and we all wanted to make the festive period special for young people who have experienced such hardship this year”. 

If you would like to donate to the campaign you can donate presents off at CTK St Mary’s in Sidcup, CTK Emmanuel in Lewisham or CTK Aquinas in Brockley.   

Suitable Donations: 

The charities are only able to take new items, sealed in their packaging. The items they can accept are: 

  • Toys 
  • Puzzles 
  • Colouring Books or Puzzle Books 
  • Gift vouchers 
  • Toiletries 
  • Chocolates/biscuits or hot chocolate 

You can also donate money at the fundraising page EKC Group and Christ the King Sixth Forms have set up:  gf.me/u/y8iw73

Charities 

The charities we are collecting for are: 

Demelza Hospice Care for Children https://www.demelza.org.uk/ 

St Vincent de Paul Society https://www.svp.org.uk/node/606 

Refuge https://www.refuge.org.uk/  

Our Gift Appeal in the Press 

You can read the full article at https://www.fenews.co.uk/press-releases/58649-college-couple-team-up-to-make-christmas-special

TES Article

CTK have been featured in an article in TES magazine to showcase our partnership with Metric Capital.

Metric Capital have been providing support to CTK students with university scholarships, and boosting young peoples chances of employability and career progression.

Act of Charity Day

For Act of Charity Day, CTK students took part I writing thank you notes and pictures thanking the NHS, local Fire brigade, Kent Police, TFL, Key workers at Queen Mary’s hospital, local care homes, and local supermarkets.

Dear NHS workers, 
Thank you so much for your hard work during these tough times. The NHS is a unit full of amazing people. It really does take a

 group of truly special and selfless people to help the whole country and make a huge difference on a daily basis.

 The NHS has helped this country of millions and millions innumerable times. We are all in your debt for this amazing care 

that the whole organisation provides. 

The NHS has set a global example of what national healthcare should look like. It is undoubtedly the best in the world. 

Filled up to the brim by people willing to make sacrifices day in and day out. You have all put yourself and your family in

 a vulnerable position. However that hasn’t stopped any member from being brave and helping the global effort to tackle 

not just a virus, but provide the right of healthcare to everyone irrespective of their background. 

The determination required for this task is truly a feat in which everyone should aspire to reach in order to excel in anything

 they pursue. Pots and pans will never be enough to show how much we appreciate the greatness that comes from each individual 

working long hours to make sure that a whole nation is put to rest assured that they will be safe. 

Happiness, rainbows and pride fill the streets. The NHS has provided a light in the darkness that is the state the world is in at the

 moment. People are happier knowing that the NHS are forever fighting illness and are on our side. We, the nation, wholeheartedly 

support the NHS and is thankful for the heroes who make it what it is today. 

Metric Capital Scholarship

This week, three Christ the King sixth form students have been awarded a scholarship from Private capital fund management firm, Metric Capital worth £15,000 each.

Each successful student was carefully selected according to their academic performance and formal virtual interview process.  Christ the King students Temitope Idowui, who hopes to study English Literature at the University of Cambridge, Keona Burey who hopes to study Primary Teaching at the University of Chichester and Jon Hamilton who hopes to study Biomedical Sciences at the University of Southampton, all successfully received a scholarship worth £15,000 over the course of their University degree.

The Metric Capital scholarship programme with Christ the King is in its ninth year and to date has awarded almost £500,000 in scholarships to hardworking, ambitious Christ the King students.  Metric Capital, worked in conjunction with Our Turn Global, a charitable organisation that uses social media to raise awareness about initiatives that have a positive impact on society to award the scholarship.

The scheme is led by Metric Capital’s Managing Partner, John Sinik. John was first introduced to Christ the King by one of his mentees, and he was inspired to create the Metric Scholarship Programme after meeting high performing, aspirational students at Christ the King, who dreamt of going on to University, but faced financial challenges in doing so.

Metric Capital Managing Partner John Sinik says:  “Tuition fees are only a part of the expense of going to University. There are living expenses that can be overwhelming for people and ultimately drive their decision not to go.  The scholarship plays a key role in allowing the students to pursue their dream of obtaining a University degree”.

Collegiate Principal Shireen Razey says:   “We are delighted to continue working in partnership with Metric Capital with this fantastic venture. We are so proud of our hardworking students at Christ the King and it is a great opportunity to support them in their university aspirations.”

Temitope Idowui, who is currently studying A Levels in English Literature, Media Studies and Sociology at CTK said ‘I can’t tell you how happy I am right now. I can’t wait for my mum to get home from work so I can share the news with her. A scholarship like this will really help me financially in the year ahead and it will mean I do not need to find a part time job and can concentrate on my studies.’

Keona Burey, who is currently studying a BTEC in Health & Social Care at CTK said;  ‘I am so blessed to have met such amazing inspiring individuals this morning. I am delighted to have been awarded this scholarship and I know it will help me greatly at university.’

Jon Hamilton, who is currently studying A Levels in Biology, Chemistry and Physics at CTK said; ‘I am so happy to gain this scholarship. I had no idea my teachers thought so highly of me and it will be a great help in my ambition to become a doctor.”

Historic England Archive – ‘Picturing Lockdown’

CTK student Mya recently entered a photography competition for the opportunity to be showcased in the Historic England Archive. Out of over 1000 submissions only 100 photographs were picked for the archive, Mya was included in this chosen 100.

Polly Braden, an renowned artist and photographer who focusses on culture, the everyday and communications, selected Mya’s photo as her favourite out of all the photographs, and the BBC contacted her to write a story about her.

SFCA National Photography Exhibition 2020

Today sees the launch of At home, an online exhibition of photographs taken by sixth form college students during the Covid-19 lockdown. Over 140 students from 46 colleges submitted their photographs for the exhibition that runs from 4th to 19th June 2020. The exhibition is being co-ordinated by the Sixth Form Colleges Association and all photographs can be viewed on the SFCA gallery website here.

Launching today’s exhibition, Gillian Keegan, Apprenticeships and Skills Minister, said:

“This has been a difficult time for the entire country but this exhibition is a wonderful example of how creativity can flourish in the face of adversity. It’s great to see how these sixth form students have captured the experiences of lockdown from a young person’s perspective. A huge congratulations to all exhibitors and I wish them every success for the future”.

Bill Watkin, Chief Executive of the Sixth Form Colleges Association, said:

“At home highlights the extraordinary artistic talent that exists in our sector. We are holding this exhibition to recognise and celebrate excellence in sixth form colleges, but also to stimulate our thinking about the world this summer. It is imperative that we keep the arts in education secure and flourishing. If young people are to make a valuable contribution to society – even if they are to be successful scientists, engineers, doctors and technicians – they need to develop their creative skills, their artistic sensitivities and their ability to interact with others. All of this will be more important than ever in the post-Covid world”.

‘At home’, the SFCA National Photography Exhibition 2020 can be viewed here: https://www.sixthformcolleges.org/411/at-home

Our CTK A Level Graphics students who have been entered:

Emilia – ‘The Search For Life’

Matilda – ‘Isolation

Victoria – ‘Through the Dark’

If you’re a Year 10 or 11 student interested in Photography and feel inspired be sure to enter our CTK Photography competition here –> https://www.ctk.ac.uk/year-11-virtual-school/ctk-photography-competition/

International Nurses Day

On International Nurses Day we at CTK want to thank all our nurses, like our former student Sarah, across the country for all that you are doing. These unprecedented times have made it most important to value and protect our NHS and so much of that weight falls on all our nurses all over the country, helping us win the battle against Coronavirus. From here at CTK: thank you Nurses!

Fundraising for the local Community

Our staff, students and wider CTK community are always keen to help support local charities, especially now during the Coronavirus pandemic.  The outbreak has had a major impact on all of our lives but particularly for vulnerable groups who need support now more than ever.

Volunteering and supporting others is at the heart of our Catholic Mission and we always strive to support our local community; now more than ever we need to come together to give back to those who are most vulnerable. 

We set up a Just Giving Page, aiming to raise £1000 to be shared between three local charities that we work closely with:

Greenwich Bexley Hospice need our support at this difficult time.  

The Athena service Lewisham/Greenwich, run by Refuge, offer support to young adults suffering gender based violence. With a 25% increase in domestic violence locally, any money raised will be a lifeline for this charity.  

Lastly, Lewisham Foodbank which CTK also supports regularly.  Food banks are experiencing shortages during the crises and every pound raised feeds a local vulnerable family in need.

We actually surpassed this, and our current total is at £1148! Thank you for all your donations, it is greatly appreciated to help these charities serving the local community in need at this time.

The Catholic Ethos in the Covid-19 Pandemic

The Tablet have released an article written by our own Collegiate Principal Ms Shireen Razey all about our Sixth Forms response to the Coronavirus and what we have been doing as a community to support those in need and give back to our NHS.

https://www.thetablet.co.uk/blogs/1/1437/the-sixth-forms-witnessing-to-a-catholic-ethos-in-the-covid-19-pandemic

The article highlights all our Sixth Form has done, between staff and students, to ensure everyone feels supported in these times of adversity. Along with college prayer everyday our Chaplains are working hard to ensure all our staff and students are awoken each day with spiritual messages to make these isolated days less lonely. Our prayer group at midday and staff reflection allows everyone to appreciate what we have and value the friends and family we all have helping us through this time.

Our ample charity work has never been so prevalent and we have raised over £1000 towards charities in need in our community. Ms Razey ends the article with this prayer which we hope provides comfort to everyone struggling during this time.

Christ the King Sixth Forms Prayer 

God of Love,  

 As members of the Christ the King Sixth Form family we ask for your continued blessing upon our work and study. You are the source of all truth and wisdom.   

May we experience in full the Life that you offer us each day, to become the best that we can be.  

Let no distractions or fears prevent us from trusting in your endless care for us.  

Shine your Light into our lives that we may become brighter beacons of faith, hope and love in our community.  

We make this prayer through Christ the Lord. 

Amen. 

Uplifting art

We are so excited to see our CTK family helping to brighten up peoples daily walks and help us all through this difficult time by joining the many other houses painting rainbows and putting up supportive messages for our NHS.

Credit to Ms Johnson’s son James for his amazing window art.

Ms Power’s son Joe aged 4, for his brilliant rainbow.

Ms Schutze’s daughter Natalya aged 4 for her beautiful creation.

Sport Relief

This year for Sport Relief students and staff were invited to wear sports clothing for a £1 donation for those in need across the UK and the worlds poorest countries. A huge thank you to everyone who supported our charities and took part.

A great deal of students even took advantage of using the fitness suite and taking part in other sporting activities to get into the sporting spirit.

Easter at Christ The King

Easter is a very special time here at CTK and despite not being together at this time, this did not stop us celebrating together. We encourage students and parents to spend time with all the family they can, and although we cannot attend Church at this time, there are lots of resources that allow you to take part in mass and services from your own home. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxIsefyl9g9A5SGWA4FvGIA

Our choir director Ms Christian-John had some great words of wisdom this weekend:

“A MESSAGE TO MY CHOIRS: 1. Don’t stop singing 2. This virus won’t last forever 3. Please keep on singing at home 4. I miss you already 5. I look forward to seeing you all again soon 6. I’m praying for you and your families 7. Keep the faith and be encouraged ??? I’mSoProudOfYou!”

Ms Christian-John also posted an amazing video on her YouTube channel dedicated to all the students and staff at CTK at this hard time. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=210&v=vAqWaes0-oc&feature=emb_logo

Donations for Lewisham Hospital Staff

Here at CTK we value charity, community and supporting others wherever we can, and this has never been more important than now. Christ the King was happy to be able to help our NHS by donating 200 science goggles and 600 pairs of disposable gloves and an array of chocolate goodies to Lewisham hospital. We also donated milk and biscuits to St Vincent de Paul Society (England & Wales).

We also donated over 200 Easter eggs to local charities and our students will be writing messages of support to NHS start using https://www.thanksamillionnhs.co.uk/

Pray as you stay

Upon the news that pubic gatherings, including mass and church ceremonies, have been cancelled for the foreseeable future, our Chaplaincy team have worked hard to ensure all staff and students have all the resources to keep the faith in the hardest times. Alongside conducting our daily College prayer online every day, our Chaplains have been providing prayers and videos for us all to follow and watch with family to help us all through difficult times. We encourage everyone to visit https://pray-as-you-go.org/retreat/pray-as-you-stay for a great Prayer series containing reflective music and words for each day as people are at home to encourage daily prayer.

God of Love,

As members of the Christ the King Sixth Forms family, we ask for your continued blessing upon our work and study. You are the source of all truth and wisdom.

May we experience in full the Life that you offer us each day, to become the best that we can be.

Let no distractions of fears prevent us from trusting in your endless care for us.

Shine your Light into our lives that we may become brighter beacons of faith, hope and love in our community.

We make this prayer through Christ the Lord. Amen.

Spiritual wellbeing has never been more important, visit https://www.alonetogether.org.uk for more ideas, help and resources for getting through this time of self isolation and distancing from those important to you and our ordinary lives.

Students working from home

We are thrilled to receive inspiring work from our students, showing how to be productive from home. This stunning postmodernist architectural design for Unit 7 BTEC Extended Diploma is by Tarique.

Thalia, one of our Graphics students for her component 2 exam produced this with the theme of social media and conformity.

Margate Geography trip

Geography students took a trip to Margate to assess the effectiveness of the coastal defences and to investigate if they have had an impact on the coastline.

They carried out Beach profiles, groyne measurements, questionnaires, measured long shore drift and carried out a bi-polar cost benefit analysis. The class split into groups and carried out different data collection to calculate consistent results.

CTK Alumni Trevor Gomez – BT Beyond Limits

Our CTK Alumni, Trevor Gomez, visited the BT Sport Studios for the new brand launch; and got the chance to talk on camera, touching on what it means to go ‘Beyond Limits’ with BT. Trevor talked to CEO Philip Jansen about his views of the exciting changes at BT, and an inspirational quote from Philip was ‘If we start with our people the possibilities for our customers are limitless’.

Trevor talked to Philip about ‘ELEVATE’; a skills development scheme for young adults, linked to his very own scheme he is running; the BT ‘Work Ready’ Programme. Trevor says he is looking forward to carrying the theme of ‘Beyond Limits’ when he presents to the Marketing Unit of BT about his role and work as a ‘5G Maker.

Trevor is an inspirational alumni to represent CTK; working with young adults and helping to revolutionise the world of technology.

Working from home

We are extremely proud to see many of our students embracing working from home and not letting it halt their enthusiasm or stop them from producing amazing pieces of work.

CTK A Level Photography student Tillie has taken this image this week entitled ‘isolation’.

Great progress from an A Level art student demonstrating how to be productive and work towards your goals from your home.

Spirituality Conference 2020 – The Power of the Word

Here at Christ the King, we recently hosted our second successful Spirituality Conference, welcome to all students across all sites, focusing on The Power of the Word.

The conference started with a welcome talk about what the days events and a song from the Gospel Choir. Throughout the day we were welcomed by many guest speakers, including Father Christopher of the St. Fidelis Friary, an Ash Wednesday lunch service, and a special performance from professional Gospel singer Natalie Christian John.

The day was a huge success and allowed a space for staff and students to network, but also reflect and learn about themselves and those around them.

Coronavirus – Latest Update

Update – 20th March

Following the announcement that education providers will close, apart from to the children of key workers and vulnerable students, the Government has now published its list of Key workers here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision

If you fall into the key worker category, please email us to confirm at enquiries@ctksfc.ac.uk, that you would like your child to attend College.   All the parent’s whose children fall into the vulnerable category were contacted by email yesterday.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers

Update – 19th March

College Closure 

Christ The King Sixth Forms will be closed from Monday 23rd March to all students, until further notice (apart from key worker’s children and vulnerable students) following the Government’s announcement last night that all schools and colleges will close at this date, due to the Coronavirus outbreak. 

Home/Distance Learning 

  • Students should check their College emails, teachers will be setting and marking classwork. Students have been fully briefed on how to study from home using online systems, Microsoft Teams, Moodle and email. 

Exams 

  • The Government announced yesterday that examinations will not take place this Summer.  We do not yet know what the Government’s plans for awarding grades will be, students should be encouraged to keep completing work set and submitting all work, please continue to check your email for updates. 

Vulnerable students and Key worker’s children 

  • We aim to remain open in some capacity for Key Worker and vulnerable students. We will be writing to those students separately to inform them of this. 

Bursary Payments 

  • A full payment will be made to all students who receive bursary payments, in the next few days.  We will continue to pay your money directly into your bank accounts, with an additional payment of £4 a day to cover free school meals.  The FSM payment will be made until the Easter holidays in the first instance as we understand a national scheme will be set up and we will update students with the information as soon as we have it. 

Students who have been offered a place for study at Christ the King Sixth Forms in 2020  

  • Please rest assured that this will not affect your application.  Once we know what the Government’s plans for awarding grades, we will update you.  

Students who have applied for a place for study at Christ the King Sixth Forms in 2020  

  • We will continue to process your application as normal.  We are postponing interviews for the present time. As an oversubscribed sixth form, we don’t want you to be disadvantaged by this so we will be making offers based on application and school report/reference.   

Students who wish to apply for a place at Christ the King Sixth Forms in 2020  

  • Applications will remain open, you can apply online or download an application form.  We will be touch once we receive your application. 

Contacting the College 

If you need to contact us during this time, please contact staff on their usual email address. If you have not heard back within 24 hours or the matter is urgent please contact us via  enquiries@ctksfc.ac.uk  

We will continue to keep you updated via email and website announcements on our website, please also keep up to date with Government guidance which is updated daily on www.gov.uk/coronavirus

We keep you all in our thoughts and prayers. 

Update –  18th March 

PARTIAL CLOSURE OF SIXTH FORM for Lower Sixth BTEC Level 3 and Lower Sixth A Level Students 

Following the Government’s recent announcement regarding self-isolation measures, unfortunately staffing levels are at a point where we are unable to teach all students safely onsite.   The health and safety of our students and staff is our number one priority at all times, therefore we will be implementing the following measures: 

From tomorrow, Thursday 19th March, until after the Easter Holidays, Tuesday 21st April, only Year 13 (Upper Sixth students), BTEC Level 1 & 2 students and those sitting GCSE/Level 1 Maths and English should attend lessons onsite. 

All remaining students should stay at home and teachers will be setting and marking work online. It is important that students continue to work hard and keep up to date with their studies. In tutorial yesterday students were fully briefed on how to access their college work from home using Microsoft Teams, Moodle and email. 

The situation is changing daily, we anticipate there will be further developments, parents and staff will continue to be updated via email.  We will continue to post updates on our website.  For further information on Coronavirus, please visit the Government website, which is updated daily. 

Update – 17th March

As you are probably aware, the Government announced new guidance yesterday regarding coronavirus.  We will continue to keep parents/guardians updated via our website but please ensure you are following the Government guidance which is updated daily www.gov.uk/coronavirus

I want to reassure you that Christ the King Sixth Forms are taking all necessary steps to protect our community and are continuing to follow official guidance from the Government and the local authority. We have taken protective measures which includes, asking that external visitors do not visit our sixth forms, postponing work experience, extra curriculum events and all trip and visits.   

Our sixth forms remain open for all students – this is the current official Government guidance.  If your son/daughter is unwell or self-isolating, report this as you would normally by following the absence procedure and telephoning us.  

If your son/daughter has the symptoms below, please keep them away from college.  Latest Government advice on how long they should stay off for can be found by visiting  www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection 

  • A new persistent dry cough 
  • A temperature that is above 37.8 C 

Government guidance now also says that if anyone in your family has these symptoms, the whole family should isolate for 14 days.  

Today in your son/daughter’s tutorial we have outlined the above, as well as given them instructions on distance learning, so that they are able to access their emails and college work from home, should they need to at this present time or near future. 

Current Government advice is that anyone at risk of increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus, needs to follow social distancing measures.  All students with a pre-existing condition that this applied to will be written to today.  If you think this applies to your son/daughter and we aren’t aware of their medical condition, please contact m.nunes@ctksfc.ac.uk 

Update – 16th March

Ensuring the health and wellbeing of students, staff and our sixth form community is of the upmost importance to Christ the King Sixth Forms.  We have therefore decided to implement a range of measures aimed at attempting to protect our community from the transmission of coronavirus. 

We continue to closely follow the Government’s advice and our sixth forms will remain open at this present time. However, we will be taking a number of measures to mitigate against transmission of coronavirus. 

 These will include, but are not limited to: 

  1. We are asking that external visitors do not visit our sixth form.   
  2. Student interviews will be postponed, all students will be contacted with information regarding this. 
  3. We ask that parents do not visit our sixth form.  Any parental meetings will be conducted by telephone.   
  4. We will be cancelling any external activity for students, such as work experience, visits or trips, they might have been planning to take as part of their course.  

Any further updates will continue to be posted on our website.  If you have any questions about these measures, please get in touch, by emailing enquiries@ctksfc.ac.uk  

Further information about Coronavirus can be found by visiting https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-government-response  

Update – 13th March

Coronavirus (COVID-19): UK government response – Updated 13 March 2020

Symptoms

The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:

New continuous cough and/or

High temperature

For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild infection

Key messages

If you have symptoms of coronavirus infection (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home and do not leave your house for 7 days from when your symptoms started. (See ending isolation section below for more information).

Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water.

Stay away from vulnerable individuals such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions as much as possible

You do not need to call NHS 111 to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after 7 days contact NHS 111 online. If you have No internet access, you should call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999

For more information on the above, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-people-with-confirmed-or-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

Update – 2nd March

Department for Education Coronavirus helpline

Today, the Dfe have launched a new helpline to answer questions about COVID-19 related to education. Staff, parents and young people can contact the helpline as follows:

Phone: 0800 046 8687
Email: DfE.coronavirushelpline@education.gov.uk
Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday)

We know that some of you may have concerns or questions about the current outbreak of Coronavirus – officially known as COVID-19.

We want to reassure you that we are working hard to minimise the risk to our students and staff and are following Government guidelines at all times.

For the latest information and guidance, please see the Government’s website.https://www.gov.uk/guidance/wuhan-novel-coronavirus-information-for-the-public

World Book Day – Thursday 5th March

Great books to read if you’re considering a future in Literature, or just if you want to develop your reading further:

The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger – In his classic coming-of-age novel, Salinger presents, through the eyes of his iconic protagonist Holden Caulfield, an intense critique of society’s superficiality and its effects on adolescence.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/1951/08/11/the-vision-of-the-innocent

Paradise Lost by John Milton – What can be deemed a daunting read consisting of a 12-part epic poem, Paradise Lost tells a great story of man’s fall from grace, the battle for heaven and a strive for redemption.

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20170419-why-paradise-lost-is-one-of-the-worlds-most-important-poems

Summertime: Scenes from a Provincial Life by J.M. Coetzee – An author not known to many, Coetzee, within a collection of interviews, utilizes a very interesting form to create what becomes a very self-deprecatory but reflective novel on the self and their relation to society.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2009/sep/06/jm-coetzee-summertime

St Mary Magdalen Primary School Visit

Here at CTK Aquinas we were honoured to have a visit from students from St Mary Magdalen Primary school to collect the year of the word candle.

As our local catholic school they walked along to join with us at our weekly mass. After an enjoyable visit with our Chaplain, accompanied by juice and biscuits they talked about their future and coming to our college when they get older.

Valentines at CTK Aquinas

This February our students really got stuck in to the Valentines spirit, selling lollipops for a very special charity very close to the heart of CTK.

Ahotokurom is a charity based in Ghana, that helps to provide support and practical aid to sufferers of Leprosy and their families. Our Sixth Form has been supporting this charity and their worthy cause for over 20 years, and are glad to say our support has helped the charity expand to also include help to those suffering with disabilities.

Chaplaincy Day at Aylesford

In an event hosted by the Education Commission, our Chaplains from all Christ the King sites, took a trip to Aylesford for a Chaplaincy day

Along with chaplains from all over our diocese, our chaplaincy team attended talks and activities, all guided by lead speaker Fr David O’Malley, a Silesian of Don Bosco, who guided and informed our team with his years of chaplaincy and classroom experience.

With over 20 years’ experience in chaplaincy and youth support, our chaplaincy team received invaluable first hand advice and information to bring back to Sixth Form and utilise in strengthening our community.

Trinity School Progression Event

We were delighted here at CTK Aquinas to host a successful Progression Conference for the keen Year 11 students at Trinity School. Upon arrival students were greeted with a welcome talk from the Principal and a presentation from Christ the King Scholarship Students demonstrating the amazing higher education opportunities we have here at CTK. Moreover, in the afternoon had the chance to get involved with many different subjects, including Sociology and Psychology.

The 40 students delved into subjects specific to our Aquinas site, and received invaluable talks by our subject teachers all about what it is like to take these subjects at Sixth Form level. The students also received mentoring from current Sixth Form students to learn all about life at CTK Aquinas.

Currently 64 former Trinity students attend Christ the King, and we hope to see this continue following the success of our Secondary School visits and events.

CTK Alumni Visit

We were delighted to welcome back to Sixth form yesterday evening, CTK alumni, who have studied Medicine or studied at Oxbridge to share their experiences with current Y12 students. The alumni represented a range of careers from junior doctors, to the media to politics.

Mrs Nadori, who organises the annual Alumni Evening, said: “ Our alumni offer great advice to students aspiring to study Medicine or applying to Oxbridge. It is always fascinating to hear how they have progressed in their respective careers.

Urban Synergy

Urban Synergy’s ‘Tips to the Top’ Role Model seminar is one of the highlights of the academic year at Christ the King Sixth Forms. The annual cross-site event, which features panel discussions and speed mentoring sessions, inspires confidence in our students and gives them an opportunity to interact with leading industry professionals.

Discussions of this kind not only broaden student horizons but also provide a valuable insight into the qualities of academic and professional success. The mentoring programmes and inspirational seminars organised by the charity provide support, guidance and encouragement for young people, and motivate them to achieve their best.

This year Christ the King Sixth Forms was fortunate enough to welcome the following guest speakers to the panel:

  • Colin Donaldon, Bristh Airways Pilot
  • Ade Adelekan, Chief Superintendent
  • Troy Von Scheibner – Magician & TV Personality (CTK alumnus)
  • Mahta Mehari, Senior Software Project Manager
  • Adrian Grant, Entertainment Producer

The evening opened with an introductory session, in which the panel discussed their personal journeys and outlined the steps they have taken to get to where they are today. This was followed by an insightful Q&A session, in which students addressed personal questions to members of the panel.

Students, as always, left the event feeling both inspired and motivated about their future potential!

Elevate Mentoring Programme

The Elevate Mentoring Programme was launched this week to CTK students by alumnus Trevor Gomes and his BT colleagues Tom Culley and Radostina Velinova.

The programme was created by Trevor to equip students with the skills and experiences required to enter the world of work and higher education.  Twenty students took part in the launch and the programme will cover topics including: Personal Branding, Networking, Interview skills, Resilience at Work, Mentoring and careers at BT and EE.

As part of the programme students will take part in a number of activities and external visit including a trip to Wembley Stadium and meeting businessman Levi Roots.

Barclays Rise Programme

The Barclays RISE Programme (Revealing the Industry to Secondary Education) was launched this week to CTK students by Zainab Kwaw-Swanzy, Yaa Ofori-Ansah, Adetola Oshin and a number of their Barclays colleagues.

The programme has been running for a number of years and was originally created by former CTK student, Michael Lee, and his colleagues within the Barclays Graduate Scheme. They wanted to provide a platform where they could share their experiences whilst mentoring students who may have limited opportunities and insight into working in professional industries.  

Each student on the programme is assigned a mentor and works with them through a four session programme.  The weekly sessions are split into two parts with the first part being an interactive presentation on the development topic of the week.  The second part is an opportunity for each mentee to have the chance to speak to and work with their mentor individually.

Following the successful completion of the mentoring programme there is also the opportunity for students to gain work experience with Barclays.

Paula Dunkley Visit

CTK Aquinas was delighted to host a talk Paula Dunkley from Lewisham Council. Paula spoke to students about what Higher and Degree Apprenticeships are and how students can gain a fantastic experience in the working world that demonstrates to employers that they can ‘hit the ground running’. 

Apprenticeships are a great alternative to university and can give students a real chance to put their skills into practice and helps them to gain more confidence in a working environment. They also get to earn while they learn.

CTK Fast Track Programme

Everyone needs to be aware of the career opportunities available to them in the future and how to best take advantage of them. To support this, the October half term saw the launch of the sixth annual CTK Fast Track Programme. As in previous years, the programme involved a large number of students from all three CTK sites coming together at CTK: Emmanuel for two days of training.

The morning session of the first day was led by CTK alumnus Seye Olokede who spoke about his own experiences and how students can “Develop a professional work ethic.” During the talk Seye covered topics including the importance of time keeping, personal presentation and the skills needed to work well and succeed in the modern workplace. During the second part of the first days training, we welcomed Trevor Gomes and Louis Howell who spoke to students about a wide range of opportunities they could become involved in. They also spoke about the use of social media in a professional environment and the benefits of networking through LinkedIn.

The first day concluded with Maria O’Regan along with her colleagues from Santander conducting two workshops “Building and presenting a compelling CV” and “Competency based Interviews”. Working in small groups, students had the opportunity to get advice and guidance on their CVs and how they could develop their interview techniques.

The second days training started with a presentation from Zainab Kwaw-Swanzy and Tola Oshin from Barclays regarding the RISE programme. The rest of the day was run by The Unloc Enterprise Academy and focused on alternative career routes for students; specifically on self-employment and entrepreneurship.

Feedback from students and guests was that the training was hugely beneficial and will have a positive impact on their career aspirations and goals.

Question Time Experience

Christ the King Sixth Forms organised a pre-election ‘Question Time’ experience for students across our three sites on Wednesday 45th December. Candidates from the local constituencies were in attendance to field questions from students ranging from how they are engaging young people in politics, tackling knife crime and mental health issues amongst young people, to housing and of course Brexit. The students asked searching and challenging questions of the party representatives.

The following candidates attended and fielded questions from our audience; CTK Emmanuel – Richard Galloway (Young people’s party), Janet Daby (Labour), Gavin Haran (Conservative), Ade Fatukasi (Lib Dem), Rosamund Addo-Kissi-Debrah (Greens) and Roger Deep (Independent), CTK St Marys – Simone Reynolds (Lib Dem) and David Tingle (Labour), CTK Aquinas – Andrea Carey (Greens), Bobby Dean (Lib Dem) and Adam Abdullah (Labour).  It was an excellent, thoughtful and informative experience for all concerned.

Louis Howell Visit

CTK students at Aquinas and St Mary’s were delighted to have Louis Howell, Director of Revolution Hive, talk to them this week about his life and career.

Louis explained to students that as someone who has interests and experience in Marketing, Media, Sports and Youth programmes, he has had to demonstrate a versatile skill set that has helped him to excel at roles in both the commercial and voluntary sectors.

Louis also spoke to students about the different roles he has managed, co-ordinated and delivered in Marketing, whilst also demonstrating a flexible and adaptive approach to everything he does.

Having grown up in Lewisham it is always a pleasure for our students to hear from Louis and he will be back in October to help with the CTK Fast Track Programme.

Magdalene Adenaike visit to Aquinas

CTK: Aquinas was pleased to welcome Magdalene Adenaike, award winning entrepreneur CEO, Founder of Music Relief and a member of the FRSA (Fellowship of the Royal Society of Arts) for a talk to its students.

Magdalene has been a regular visitor to us over the years and she shared with students her experiences of being a teenage mum who faced redundancy and homelessness but never gave up on her dream of being successful in the field of music. Having left school she decided not to take the Accounting & Statistics course her parents wanted her to. She eventually worked for Barclays for four years, until she was made redundant.  Supported by her partner she studied for a degree at UEL in Music Industry Management whilst also volunteering as a vocal coach in the local community.

It was at this stage of her life that Magdalene fully realised the healing power of music, not just on her, but on the community: bringing people together and helping them share their issues. This is when she was inspired to found Music Relief in 2011, inspiring young people to grow their business through their talents, transforming their lives through the process and breaking down barriers that stops them from progressing. 

Magdalene is also author of the book “From Shame to Strength. Music Saved Me” in which she describes the influence of music in her life. Magdalene advised the students: “In growing up, life has its way of throwing challenges at you. Its your job to deal with those challenges .”

Visit to the University and Apprenticeship fair at The Emirates Stadium

On 27 September, nearly 40 CTK students enjoyed a visit to the busy and bustling Apprenticeship Fair at the Emirates Stadium in North London.  The event gave students the opportunity to talk to employers and training providers about apprenticeships, as well as speaking to the many universities present about Degree Apprenticeships. 

One of the Upper Sixth students who attended and had found it worthwhile, said:

“I didn’t expect to find so many degree apprenticeship opportunities to get my qualifications for accounting and finance.”

If you are planning to look for an apprenticeship alongside or instead of applying to university, please book an appointment to discuss this with the Careers Team at your site or email: careers@ctksfc.ac.uk

Christ the King Sixth Forms announces launch of new sixth form centres

Press Release Thursday 26 September 2019

Christ the King Sixth Forms announced plans today to create the borough’s first Catholic selective sixth form centre.  CTK Aquinas will open its doors in 2020 to high performing A Level students and will be the area’s only sixth form centre of its kind.  In another first, Christ the King Sixth Forms will also be launching London’s only Catholic sixth form centre for vocational students, CTK Emmanuel.

Under the plans announced today by Joint Collegiate Principal Shireen Razey, new students joining Christ the King Sixth Forms in 2020 will choose from three distinct sixth form centres, based on their university ambitions, career aspirations and prior academic performance.

CTK St Mary’s will continue to provide an extensive range of both A Level and high level BTEC qualifications at its sixth form in Sidcup.

Joint Collegiate Principal Shireen Razey says: “Over the past 12 months, we have consulted extensively with staff, parents, alumni, universities, our employer advisory boards and Catholic partners.  As a result we have built a distinct picture of why students and parents choose each of our sixth forms as a place to study, what they value about their environment and teaching, and where there are additional opportunities to supply something unique which is not currently offered within the local community.”

From September 2020, CTK Aquinas will launch as a selective A Level centre for excellence.  The Christian values of the Catholic college, combined with a high quality curriculum, developed in partnership with independent schools and the scholarship graduate programme, will appeal to those with top GCSE grades.  Students will be taught in a purpose built sixth form, by specialist teachers with a focus on progressing to the UK’s top Universities.

Students will be offered a range of 23 subjects at A Level and will need to have achieved at least 48 points at GCSE in order to apply, with an average grade profile of 6. Those studying Science and Maths will require a GCSE grade 7 or above.  Students wishing to study for an A Level subject will need a grade 6 or above in that subject at GCSE.  Dress code will be formal, with students required to wear business-like suits, with tailored trousers and skirts.

Another first will be the launch of CTK Emmanuel as a centre for professional excellence.  From September 2020, CTK Emmanuel will provide high level technical and vocational qualifications, for students who aim to progress to university or into careers in engineering, science, media, business, law, health, education, sports and performing arts.   Currently, almost 90% of Christ the King’s BTEC students progress onto university, which is significantly higher than the national average.  In 2018, 50% of Christ the King students that secured a place at a Russell Group University, had studied a Level 3 BTEC Qualification.  CTK Emmanuel will offer the widest range of university focused vocational courses in the area and will be London’s only dedicated sixth form specialising in vocational courses.

In Sidcup, CTK St Mary’s will continue to provide a wide range of 30 A Level and BTEC courses and graduate programmes to suit a variety of abilities, including the highest performing GCSE students on the Advanced Graduate Programme. 

The three sixth forms will provide extensive choice for local students across London and Kent with a wide range of courses on offer to suit all abilities and aspirations, and a place for all hardworking, ambitious students.

Christ the King Chair of Governors Rupert Evenett says; “We believe that across each of Christ the King Sixth Forms, we are able to offer every young person with ambition, drive and aspiration the chance to study up to the highest level and gain entry to leading universities. Our Christian values are underpinned by our CTK graces, built on character education, which are; grit, respect, awareness, curiosity, endeavor and self-control. These values are key to the success of our students and key to our sixth form communities.”

Janet Daby MP inspires the next generation of Lewisham school leaders

Janet Daby, MP for Lewisham East, spoke to the next generation of Lewisham School leaders today at training event designed to prepare them to be role models in their schools and communities. 

The event explored topics including being an effective representative, communicating ideas clearly and exploring roles and responsibilities. Janet opened the event and spoke to students about the qualities needed to be a good leader.

“I was delighted to speak to the students today. It’s so important that they are able to access this kind of training, which will help them to be leaders in our community and access opportunities in later life.  I am so proud of these students and our local schools, who are training the next generation of Lewisham leaders,’ said Janet.

 Head Boys and Girls, Prefects and Student Leadership teams from local schools attended the event, including Bonus Pastor School, St Columba’s Catholic Boys School, St Thomas More School, Deptford Green School, Saint Gabriel’s College and St. Mary’s Catholic High School, amongst others.

David Pearson, Director of Wider Learning, Careers, & Partnerships at Christ the King, said: ‘We were delighted to be able to host this event and to welcome Janet Daby to speak with students.  Effective communication, interpersonal and leadership skills are invaluable tools which can help students during their schooling and in the future and this was a fantastic opportunity to bring students from local schools together to learn from the experience’.

The training day explored topics including, being an effective representative, communicating ideas clearly and exploring roles and responsibilities.

The event was run by the Unloc Enterprise Academy which a non-profit organisation is helping to enable schools and colleges to inspire, motivate and develop the enterprising mind-sets of their young people. 

Unloc was founded in 2013 by award-winning young leaders and advocates Hayden Taylor and Ben Dowling.

Christ the King students awarded £45,000 in Metric Capital Scholarships

This week, three Christ the King sixth form students have been awarded a scholarship from Private capital fund management firm, Metric Capital worth £15,000 each.

Each successful student was carefully selected according to their academic performance and formal interview process.  Christ the King students Veronica Marafini, who hopes to study Translation and Interpreting with Modern Languages at the University of East Anglia, Kafilat Alogba who hopes to study Law and Sociology at the University of Warwick and Chanin Peart who hopes to study Business Management at the University of Westminster, all successfully received a scholarship worth £15,000 over the course of their University degree.

The Metric Capital scholarship programme with Christ the King is in its eighth year and to date has awarded £300,000 in scholarships to hardworking, ambitious Christ the King students.  Metric Capital, worked in conjunction with Our Turn Global, a charitable organisation that uses social media to raise awareness about initiatives that have a positive impact on society to award the scholarship.

The scheme is led by Metric Capital’s Managing Partner, John Sinik.  John was first introduced to Christ the King by one of his mentees, and he was inspired to create the Metric Scholarship Programme after meeting high performing, aspirational students at Christ the King, who dreamt of going on to University, but couldn’t afford it.

Metric Capital Managing Partner John Sinik says:  “Tuition fees are only a part of the expense of going to University. There are living expenses that can be overwhelming for people and ultimately drive their decision not to go.  The scholarship plays a key role in allowing the students to pursue their dream of obtaining a University degree”.

Collegiate Principal Shireen Razey says:  “We are delighted to continue working in partnership with Metric Capital with this fantastic venture. We are so proud of our hardworking students at Christ the King and it is a great opportunity to support them in their university aspirations.”

Christ the King celebrates another year of excellent results success

Students and staff at Christ the King Sixth Form celebrated another year of excellent examination success at all three sites. As a dedicated specialist sixth form, Christ the King offers a wide range of A Level courses available to talented and ambitious students.

Christ the King students, across sites in Sidcup, Brockley and Lewisham were delighted with their results, which exceeded national benchmarks once again and will be progressing to universities across the country or into apprenticeship or employment opportunities.

Co Collegiate Principal Shireen Razey, said “The high volume of students achieving A Level qualifications at Christ the King makes all of us associated with CTK very proud. Progression onto prestigious universities and employment opportunities can be truly life changing and it gives us great satisfaction to see our students benefit from such destinations. We wish each of our students every future success”.

Rose Figueroa was delighted to get top grades A*AA in Sociology, History and Politics and is going to study Politics and International Studies at Warwick University. She said; ‘I’m so happy to have gained a place at Warwick, where I can spend a year abroad and use my Spanish. All my teachers at CTK were so supportive and encouraging and I would like to thank them’.

Two Christ the King students secured prestigious College scholarships, worth £15,000 each, from private capital fund management firm Metric Capital.  Kafilat Alogba achieved AAB in A Level Sociology, Psychology and History and is going to study Law and Sociology at Warwick University.  Veronica Marafini gained A level grades AAA*B in French, Spanish, Italian and Business and is off to study Translation and Interpretation at the University of East Anglia.  Veronica said’ I’m delighted with this opportunity! I would recommend anyone to come to Christ the King, because of the quality of teaching and the opportunities which are available’.

A number of students secured highly competitive places to study Law at top universities, including Priestess Bassey, who was delighted to achieve grades AAB and is going to Sheffield University.  She said; ‘the teachers have been extremely encouraging, I’m so proud of my achievements’. Chibuzo Amatoby studied Psychology, English Literature and Politics and achieved grades A AB, and will be studying Law at Nottingham University.  Kieran Reidy studied Geography, Law and History and gained grades AAB. He is going to Queen Mary’s University. ‘Christ the King helped prepare me for the level of study needed to succeed at University and the teachers are so supportive’.

As well as success for aspiring Law graduates, Christ the King students gained places on highly competitive medical science courses.  Mambo-Kien Awah Alanga achieved AAB in Maths, Chemistry and Biology, she will now study Biomedical Science at St George’s University. Mambo was delighted with her results; ‘After studying Biomedical Science I want to study Medicine and fulfil my ambition of becoming a doctor.  Since coming to Christ the King, my confidence has really grown and I’m following my dreams now!’  Mahadi Sadejhi gained grades ABB in Chemistry, Biology and Persian and achieved a place at highly competitive Kings College London to study Medicine.  He said; ‘my tutor has been a very positive influence, she is so supportive, I can’t thank her enough’.

With so many reasons to celebrate, the class of 2019 can now begin the next stage of their education life journey.

Annual CTK cross-site external speakers programme

CTK Aquinas was delighted to have Tilly Franklin, Director of Investments at Alta Advisers, launch the annual CTK cross-site External Speaker Programme.

Over 70 students Business students had the opportunity to listen to Tilly’s inspirational talk about her life, career and what is involved in running a private equity fund.  Tilly explained to students how she came to work in private equity despite not initially studying Business or Finance.

Tilly spoke of her path in education: from attending her local school before going to the University of Cambridge, followed by London Business School and then Harvard University. She also explained about the variety of previous roles she has held at BBC Worldwide Ltd, Virgin Management Ltd. and McKinsey & Company.

David Pearson, Director of Wider Learning, Careers, & Partnerships at CTK, said: ‘Tilly Franklin has got our External Speaker Programme off to a fantastic start. She is one of many high-profile speakers who will be coming into our colleges over the next few months.  Our students gain a great deal from hearing these inspirational, high-achieving individuals speak about their own education and career paths.’

CTK Aquinas Evening of Celebration 2019

This month, we held the Christ the King Evening of Celebration at CTK Aquinas. Our annual Evening of Celebration provides our students with the opportunity to reflect on the friendships, knowledge and skills that they have developed whilst studying at Christ the King. The event allows us to honour all their hard work and academic and extra-curricular achievements.  

There were a variety of keynote speakers at the 2019 Evening of Celebration.

CEO and Founder of Music Relief Foundation: Magdalene Adenaike, was one of the guest speakers at Christ the King Aquinas. Magdalene is a multi-award-winning entrepreneur, who uses music workshops to develop the confidence and self-worth of young people. She launched the knife crime initiative ‘More Than Able’, a Leadership and Resilience Program that trains young people to become ambassadors for positive change. She is a fellow with the Royal Society of Arts and is one of the most powerful inspirational speakers in the UK.

It was a great privilege to have all our guest speakers join us in celebrating the achievements of our students and Christ the King would like to extend its sincere thanks to them all for taking time out of their busy schedules to honour the occasion. The College would also like to commend all of the 2019 leavers on their tenacity and hard work and looks forward to welcoming them back on results day in August 2019. 

Christ the King Acts of Charity Day 2019

Over 800 students from the three Christ the King sites in South East London took part in supporting their local communities, across London.

 Students took part in activities such as helping feed the homeless at Brixton soup kitchen and taking part in the pay it forward initiative, helping to support the homeless at Second Shot Coffee in Bethnal Green. Students from Christ the King St Mary’s in Sidcup, Aquinas in Brockley and Emmanuel in Lewisham, gave their time to help out at foodbanks in Greenwich, Eltham and Lewisham and visited a care home in Deptford to take part in activities with the residents. Students also worked in ‘The Charity Shop’ in Sidcup, which raises funds for the Canterbury Oast Trust, which supports people with learning disabilities in education and work.

The Christ the King motto is ‘Ut Vitam Habeant’ which means ‘that they may have life’ and every student in encouraged to develop as a whole person and to be actively involved in both the college and in their local community.

This year students have taken part in a number of charity events. They have donated goods and volunteered time at local food banks, taken part in sponsored walks to raise money for Second Shot coffee. At Christmas, Christ the King students created Christmas boxes, filling them with goods to donate to the Samaritan’s ‘Operation Christmas Child’ appeal’.  At Easter, students created Easter baskets, filled with treats and messages of hope for the children of local Delmelza hospice, and refugee children, who have no access to benefits, through the Revive charity.

Although the initiative is called Acts of Charity, it is not only about charity work.  Christ the King students also actively get involved in community work.  Christ the King students have taken part in litter collections in local parks, worked in care homes and primary schools and got involved in recruiting new shops to join Lewisham’s water bottle refilling scheme, which allows people to refill plastic water bottles on their premises to reduce plastic waste.

Co-Collegiate Principal Rob McAuliffe said “At Christ the King we aim for all of our students to develop into young people that will go on to make a positive contribution to society, and the charity and community work, is an important part of this.  Helping the local community helps our students to make a positive contribution to their area they live and study in.  Students find getting involved in the activities really rewarding, as well as building confidence, team building and leadership skills, which they will use to help them as they progress onto University or employment”. 

Aquinas Art Trip to Margate

The upper students studying Fine Art and Photography A Level at Aquinas, went on a trip to Margate on a particularly sunny day in February.

We went to the Turner Contemporary Art Gallery, where we saw an exhibition by the artist Katie Paterson. Some of the artworks we encountered included: A mirror ball reflecting nearly every solar eclipse, a candle scented as if journeying from Earth into a Black Hole and music bounced from the moon’s surface!

Afterwards we assembled on the beach and made cyanotypes (an old photographic process), from items we found, fixing our images in the sea – Mr. Jones was particularly proud of his result.

We finished the day by visiting a junkyard and taking photographs of discarded fairground attractions and a bear before piling back on to the minibus and heading back inland.

Creative Arts trip to Oxford

A-level Fine Art, Graphic Communication and Textiles students visited the beautiful university city of Oxford.  

Students were able to take in the architectural beauty of the city and visited the Pitt Rivers Museum which displays the archaeological and anthropological collections of the University of Oxford.  Housing over 600,000 objects, photographs and manuscripts from almost every country in the world and from all period of human existence, the displays – showing over 55,000 artefacts – are organised by type, rather than geographical region or time period. This typological arrangement can function as a ‘democracy of things’ and encourage global cross-cultural reflection and celebration of human creativity and cultural diversity. 

A fantastic day was had by all and A-level Graphic Communication student Elienai Peprah remarked he was in awe of “The beauty of how artefacts can capture moments of human existence.”

Barclays Rise Programme 2019

The annual Barclays RISE Programme was recently launched by Zainab Kwaw-Swanzy, Yaa Ofori-Ansah and a number of their Barclays colleagues to CTK students.

Barclays RISE (Revealing the Industry to Secondary Education) is a mentoring programme, initiated by the Embrace Forum at Barclays and supported by local charity Urban Synergy. It was designed to engage, equip and encourage young people aged 16-18 with the skills and confidence they need to excel in their futures. The scheme was founded by former CTK student, Michael Lee, and fellow colleagues within the Barclays Graduate Scheme. They wanted to provide a platform where they could share their experiences whilst mentoring students who may have limited opportunities and insight into working in professional industries.

Each student on the programme was assigned a mentor and worked with other students through a four session programme.  The weekly sessions were split into two parts with the first part being an interactive presentation on the development topic of the week.  The second part was an opportunity for each mentee to have the chance to speak to and work with their mentor individually.

Following the successful completion of the mentoring programme there is also the opportunity for students to gain work experience with Barclays.

Spiritual Treats at Kintbury Retreat

During the last week of February, a group of students from Aquinas and Emmanuel took part in a retreat at the Kintbury retreat house. Along with students from St Charles 6thform, they spent 3 days examining who they were as a person, searching deep their own relationship with God surrounded by the beautifully picturesque Berkshire countryside. Hosted and facilitated by the excellent Kintbury volunteers, the students had a truly fantastic experience. As one attendee said

“I think it was amazing. It was a chance to relax and take a break from your life outside of the retreat. It gave me an opportunity to make friends and meet amazing people.“

“Caroline, Or Change” theatre trip!

Last Thursday a group of CTK English Literature students went to see Tony Kushner’s musical masterpiece ‘Caroline, Or Change’.  It tells the story of Caroline, a black maid struggling to provide for her family on her wage of $30.

She has developed a hardened persona due to the adversities she has faced and this is reflected in the refrain that runs throughout the show ‘and I am mean, and I am tough, but $30 ain’t enough.’  Caroline works long hours in the basement tending to the needs of a wealthy Jewish household and, despite her hard exterior, the young boy in the family befriends her.  Taking pity on Caroline, he leaves loose change in his pockets in the hope that she will take it to enable her to look after her family.  This poses a dilemma for the protagonist, what is more important: her pride or feeding her children?

Our students were engrossed in the production and it really enabled them to see how to analyse plays in performance (which is a requirement of component 1 of their A Level).  The motif of change running through the play was intriguing: the literal change left in the boy’s pockets and the rapid societal change that was happening in 1960s America, which was causing Caroline to feel left behind.  Indeed, A Level English Literature student Funmi found the context fascinating, she said the musical: ‘gave [her] an insight into the lives of people of different races and how the death of John F. Kennedy affected people in America at the time’.  Another student Natasha really focused on the staging and she said the director used ‘clever stage positioning to show the class differences between the characters.’

Nadirah commented that the show was ‘vibrant and highly enjoyable’ and whilst the subject matter was serious, there were also moments of humour.  This was largely down to the magical realism of the piece; the singing washing machine in particular was an excellent vehicle for providing a commentary on Caroline’s life and internal thoughts.  It was great to catch ‘Caroline, Or Change’ at the end of its West End run and we are already looking forward to our next theatre trip! 

Trip to Greenwich University

First and foremost, we would personally like to thank The University of Greenwich for having us. With the picturesque panorama of London’s boasting skyline and the supreme symmetrical structure of the 1890s university (who proudly claim the likes of Malorie Blackman and Charles K. Kao as graduates), the opportunity bestowed upon us to attend a lecture given by Dr Justine Baillie; a senior lecturer who specialises in American fiction and African-American writing.

At daybreak, we ventured off through the busy roads of the world-famous town, Greenwich, known for the traditional location of the Prime Meridian, our eyes captured by the ethereal historical landmarks such as the archaic building, the National Maritime Museum, and the world famous Cutty Sark.

 Dr Baillie introduced us to her mindset through bullet point notation of “key dates”, “the development of American writing” and “the American frontier.” Her encyclopaedia of knowledge of American history such as, the Declaration of Independence and the 1620 Arrival of Pilgrims at Plymouth enticed us to do some background research on the historical context of our literature texts. From the interwar classic, The Great Gatsby, to Steinbeck’s realist fiction novel, The Grapes of Wrath, and lastly the renowned drama, A Streetcar Named Desire, Christ the King’s English Language and Literature classes were bewitched to attend more of the University of Greenwich’s twilight lectures. Although the upper sixth class did not find the lecture as useful due to already having further knowledge around the texts, on the other hand, the lower sixth had more to take from it.

CeCe Sammy Visit and Performance

Students at CTK Aquinas were delighted to recently have an exhilarating talk and performance by CeCe Sammy.

CeCe is a British vocal and performance coach, known for her TV appearances and behind the scenes contributions as a vocal coach and judge on various music and entertainment shows such as Pop Idol and The X Factor.

 CeCe spoke to students about her life and career. She explained how she is a graduate from the London College of Music and was originally a classically trained pianist before going on to coach chart acts such Charlotte Church, Will Young and Leona Lewis.

 Students left her talk feeling energised about their futures as welling having their passion for music nurtured.

Valeria Locatelli (Chief Auditor) and Sumit Sabharwal from M&G Investments

Economics and Business students were delighted to hear a talk by Valeria Locatelli (Chief Auditor) and Sumit Sabharwal from M&G Investments. 

M&G Investments are one of the UK’s largest and longest established investment houses and is more than 80 years old.  

Valeria and Sumit spoke to students about the work they do. They explained that an auditor is someone who prepares and examines financial records. They ensure that financial records are accurate and that taxes are paid properly and on time and that they assess financial operations and work to help ensure that organizations run efficiently.

Valeria and Sumit also explained how they progressed into their current roles and the numerous opportunities that are available for students in the finance industry.

Duro from 2020Change

All three CTK sites were delighted to have Duro from 2020Change come back once gain this year and speak to students about the valuable work they do in the local communities.  2020Change was set-up to build the next generation of community, business and political leaders. 

 Duro spoke with great passion about how he strongly believes that today’s young people have the potential to become tomorrow’s leaders. He stressed that all they need is someone to show them how to use their past experiences as transferable skills and this would allow them to thrive in the corporate world.

Duro also explained to students how he successfully built and sold his first business before deciding to work in the charitable sector. We hope to see Duro and 2020Change again next year!

Psychology Conference

On Tuesday 4th December Year 13 Psychology students from all three sites attended a revision conference at CTK Aquinas. The conference was given by Professor Jean-Marc Lamont, an experienced Senior A’ Level examiner with over 20 years’ experience of teaching A Level psychology, including being Head of Psychology in a high performing Sixth Form College – he achieved 22 A*s last year!

He is a prolific author of text books and revision guides for A’ Level Psychology and is an accomplished deliverer of staff and student events. He delivered a very interactive session to our students, developing their exam skills in two particularly tricky topics. The students gained lots from it; “He really helped us to maximise our marks in both short and long answer questions.”, “He really helped me understand how to break down the marks given for short answer questions.”.

Urban Synergy’s Role Model Seminar 2018

Urban Synergy’s ‘Tips to the Top’ Role Model seminar is one of the highlights of the academic year at Christ the King. The annual cross-site event, which features panel discussions and speed mentoring sessions, inspires confidence in our students and gives them an opportunity to interact with leading industry professionals.

Discussions of this kind not only broaden student horizons but also provide a valuable insight into the qualities of academic and professional success. The mentoring programmes and inspirational seminars organised by the charity provide support, guidance and encouragement for young people, and motivate them to achieve their best.

This year Christ the King was fortunate enough to welcome the following guest speakers to the panel:

  • Andrew Cole, Retired International Footballer
  • Oliver Adebayo, Trainee Orthopaedic Surgeon
  • Troy Von Scheibner – Magician & TV Personality (CTK alumnus)
  • David Olusegun – CEO, Black Diamond Records (CTK alumnus)
  • Natalie Scott – Fashion Stylist (CTK alumnus)

The evening opened with an introductory session, in which the panel discussed their personal journeys and outlined the steps they have taken to get to where they are today. This was followed by an insightful Q&A session, in which students addressed personal questions to members of the panel. Professionals from banking, medicine, technology, fashion, politics, construction, law, teaching and research based professions then took part in a speed mentoring session which comprised a string of five minute talks with small groups of students. We were delighted that among these professional were another three CTK alumni:

  • Seni Fawehinmi: New Business Development Manager – Thomson Reuters 
  • Jeff Perkins: Executive Director – Storyful 
  • Charisma Jones: Solicitor – Lime TV 

CTK students left the event feeling both inspired and motivated about their future potential!

European Young Translator of the Year Competition

Christ the King Sixth Form College has been selected as one of only 73 schools in the UK to take part in the prestigious young translator competition run by the European Union.

The European Commission’s Juvenes Translatores competition is designed to promote multilingualism, language learning and careers in translation. Contestants are asked to translate a text of about one page from any of the 24 official languages of the EU into any other official language. The competition is open to second-level students who were born in 2001. One winner from each Member State will be invited on a three-day trip to Brussels, with an award ceremony in the headquarters of the European Commission

 The competition will take place simultaneously across Europe at 9am on Thursday 22nd November. Christ the King will be represented by 5 linguists:

1.Doua Khila

2.Deborah Momoh

3.Abigail Tenkorang

4.Aminata Kebbeh

5.Cristina Aguilar Mbula.

We are also taking this opportunity to ask all Modern Foreign Language students to take part in the same contest as part of an internal translation competition.  There will be a prize for the best translation in each language – French/Spanish or Italian.

CTK Fast Track Programme

Changes in technology and the labour market mean that students need to be aware of the career opportunities available to them in the future and how to best take advantage of them. To support this, the October half term saw the launch of the fifth annual CTK Fast Track Programme. As in previous years, the Programme involved 50 students from all three CTK sites coming together at CTK: Emmanuel for two days of training.

The morning session on the first day was led by Dr Rupert Evenett (Chair of Governors) who talked to the students about “Developing a professional work ethic.” During the talk Dr Evenett covered topics including the importance of time keeping, personal presentation and the skills needed to work well and succeed in the modern workplace.

During the second part of the first days training we welcomed Seye Olokede, a former student from Christ the King, who spoke about his own experiences and what it takes to be a success. During this session Seye talked about the use of social media in a professional environment and the benefits of networking through LinkedIn.

The first day concluded with Maria O’Regan along with her colleagues from Santander conducting two workshops “Building and presenting a compelling CV” and “Competency based Interviews”. Working in small groups, students had the opportunity to get advice and guidance on their CVs and how they could develop their interview techniques.

The second days training was run by The Unloc Enterprise Academy and focused on alternative career routes for students; specifically on self-employment and entrepreneurship.  

Feedback from students and guests was that the training was hugely beneficial and will have a positive impact on their career aspirations and goals.

Monster Confidence Event at Plexal

Ten students from Christ the King: Emmanuel, St. Mary’s and Aquinas attended the ‘Monster Confidence’ Event at Plexal, Queen Elizabeth Park in Stratford.

This event was run by the Stemettes who promote women in STEM (Science, Technology, Maths and Engineering). The students were involved in confidence workshops, mentoring and interview practice. They also met many inspirational women who currently work in STEM. It was an inspiring day for all. 

Sabrina Toshi, who is studying A-level Maths, Physics and Chemistry said ‘Once the “Monster Confidence” event started, I enjoyed every single moment. I had the opportunity to meet and talk to professionals from some of the biggest, worldwide companies.’

Annie Koudiane – My Start in Studying at De Montfort University

Hi, my name is Annie and I used to be a student at Christ the King Sixth Form: Aquinas. I studied BTEC Business and graduated in 2018 with a D*D*D. I have just started at De Montfort University, studying Accounting & Finance.

My university experience has been wonderful so far. Last week I had my introductory sessions where I met my lecturers, tutors and class members for my course. I really enjoyed my Matriculation ceremony, where I was welcomed by the Vice-Chancellor into the Business and Law Faculty. 

I have also joined two clubs which are Archery and GoGlobal; GoGlobal lets student have the opportunity to travel the world, volunteer in another country and help the environment or local community whilst developing key skills. 

 I am very lucky in that with the help of Christ the King I have been awarded a £15,000 scholarship by Metric Capital Partners for the duration of my studies. Metric Capital Partners are a capital fund management company and the firm’s managing partner is a gentleman called John Sinik.

 I am really looking forward to studying at De Montfort University and of a great year ahead!

Modern Foreign Languages Competition – Outward Bound Canada Trip

For the second year running, CTK Modern Foreign Languages department had the amazing opportunity to send one of their students to a once in a lifetime 21-day Outward Bound trip in Canada, fully funded by Stuart Horne Bursary.

The MFL candidates took part in a language competition. This year’s lucky winner was Charlie Sharpe. Charlie is a committed student of Spanish who is also studying Classical Civilisation, Maths and Philosophy.

Charlie has always shown a great interest in taking part in extra-curricular events and discovering new things. Last year, Charlie took part in a trip to the European Parliament in Strasbourg and showed a great enthusiasm for European and international relations.  Charlie is also very sporty and likes to set himself new challenges. He was the perfect candidate for the Outward Bound Canada trip and was looking forward to visiting Canada, exploring the country and developing further his sense of adventure. Although he knew how hard this adventure could be, he was delighted and ready to embrace this opportunity. Charlie said the trip had changed him in a very positive way. He now feels more prepare to deal with social interactions and groups. He has also changed his priorities and pays a lot more attention to his surrounding and the environment. According to Charlie, if everyone could take part in such a trip and have the same experience, the world would be a better place.      

The Stuart Horne Bursary has a mission to provide economic assistance and an array of educational, adventurous, and transformational experiences across Canada to teenagers and young adults from the UK who may never have before had either the option or the chance to participate in such an amazing opportunity. The Stuart Horne Bursary seeks to support youth by providing and funding scholarships to universities, schools and outdoor leadership programs.

Dame Nicola Brewer Visit

CTK: Emmanuel was delighted to have Dame Nicola Brewer, Vice-Provost International, University College London (UCL), launch our annual External Speaker Programme.  

Over 100 students had the opportunity to listen to Nicola’s inspirational talk about her career as a senior diplomat at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.  Nicola explained to students how she came to be British High Commissioner to South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland from May 2009 to September 2013.

As Vice-Provost (International), Nicola talked about her responsibilities for UCL’s Global Engagement Strategy to achieve fair solutions to global challenges. Nicola also spoke of her work on Women’s Rights and her role as Gender Equality Champion on UCL’s Senior Management Team, something she is extremely passionate about.

Simon Spearman, Principal of CTK: Emmanuel, where the visit took place, said: ‘Dame Nicola Brewer has got our External Speaker Programme off to a brilliant start. She is one of many high-profile visitors from the worlds of academia, politics, and industry who will be coming into our colleges over the next few months.  Our students gain a great deal from hearing these inspirational, high-achieving individuals speak about their own education and career paths.

Beginning of Year Academic Mass with Archbishop Peter

Along with other Catholic schools and Colleges, CTK Students, Chaplains, the Vice Principal and Chair of Governors represented the College at the Education Commission’s Beginning of the Academic Year Mass in St George’s Cathedral on Tuesday 11th September.

Archbishop Peter was the main celebrant who spoke about the importance of Catholic Education that provided the opportunity of developing the whole person. Some of the students pictured below with Archbishop Peter were also involved in the Choir that consisted of a range of schools. It was a joyful and uplifting occasion that cemented the sense of being part of a wider family of Catholic schools and Colleges in the Archdiocese of Southwark.

National Citizens Service Visit at Aquinas

It was great to hear Rhia and Jonny from the National Citizens Service (NCS) come to CTK: Aquinas and talk to students about all the ways that they can get involved with NCS and embark on exhilarating challenges whilst building skills for both work and life.

Rhia and Jonny explained that NCS exists to help tackle some of the biggest social challenges in our country. The aim is to engage young people both in social action in their communities and the democratic process, building their understanding of their responsibilities as citizens.

More than 400,000 young people have already said YES to NCS and this number includes many CTK students.

Excellent exam success for Christ the King Students

Students and staff at Christ the King Sixth Form are celebrating another year of excellent examination success at all three sites. Students have progressed onto some of the most prestigious universities in the country.

Esther Adebiyi achieved AAA in Law, Psychology and Sociology and is going on to studying Law at Warwick University. Tariq Odunua gained AAA in Psychology, Business and RE. Tariq will be attending the University of East Anglia to study Business Finance and Management. Jothom Ajakaiye achieved ABB in Psychology, History and English Literature and will be studying Law at UEA.

 Ella Denman will be studying Law at Sheffield after gaining AAB in Sociology, Law and Psychology.  Aminata Daboh achieved ABB in Sociology, English Literature and Media Studies and will be attending Aston University to study Law with Management.

Molly Gazzard achieved AAB in Psychology, Sociology and Philosophy.  She will be going to Brunel University to study Drama and Theatre Arts. Niall O’Malley gained AAB in History, Sociology and Government and Politics and will be going to Liverpool University to study International Politics and Policy.  Natasza Strapko achieved A*A*B in Psychology, Sociology and English Language and Literature. She will be going to Loughborough University to study Psychology and Criminology. Teniola Dada is going to Kent University to study Psychology after achieving ABB in Sociology, Philosophy and English Literature.

Maria Tulea is going on to study Architecture at Nottingham University after gaining A*BB in Fine Art, Mathematics and Design and Technology. Alyshia Gomez gained AAB in Maths, Chemistry and Biology and will be studying Computer Science at University of Surrey.  Olivia Aimable-Lina will be studying Social Work at the University of Birmingham after gaining grades AAA* in Sociology, English Literature and Textile Design.  Steven Le achieved A*BB in Mathematics, Further Mathematics and Chemistry and will go on to study Mathematics at Surrey University.  Patricia Mofus will be studying Political Science and Sociology at the University of Birmingham after gaining A*AB in Sociology, Psychology and English Literature.

Rob McAuliffe, Collegiate Principal, said “Once again our A’ Level students have achieved excellent results and we are proud to say that progression to university and employment from the college is extremely strong. The hard work of staff and students is to be celebrated. Our young people are ambassadors for their generation and our best wishes go out to each and every one of them as they start the next phase of their education or employment journey. There are some remarkable individual achievements and successes but there is also a sense of whole college achievement here at Christ the King. As a community we go from strength to strength”.

A Talk by Paul Morris

Christ the King was delighted to recently host a talk by Paul Morris who is the Managing Director for Europe, Middle East and Africa at Willis Towers Watson.

Paul talked to over one hundred of our students about growing up in California and the academic and personal challenges he faced when studying at Harvard University, receiving both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees with Honours in Applied Mathematics.

Paul’s consulting career has seen him work in California, New York and the UK and he spoke at length about how he and Willis Towers Watson promotes diversity and inclusion in their work place.

After the talk Paul said:  

“I thoroughly enjoyed the talk with the students.  It is inspiring to see thoughtful and inquisitive students who will be leading our communities, businesses and governments in the years to come.  Christ the King Sixth Form is doing a great job to prepare them for their futures.” 

CTK Aquinas
Sprules Road
Brockley
London SE4 2NL
020 7358 2400
aquinas@ctksfc.ac.uk
Christ The King Sixth Forms