Two Hove sixth forms are to merge after working together over the past two years.
Blatchington Mill and Hove Park are to combine their sixth forms and operate the new college from Hove Park’s premises.
Letters have been sent to parents and the new sixth form will take its first students in September net year.
In a joint statement the schools said: “Two Hove schools’ partnership work has created further opportunities for a joint sixth form.
“The governing body at Blatchington Mill has decided to seek to merge Blatchsix with the post-16 provision of Hove Park.
“The two schools have had a joint course offer for the past two years and this proposal seeks to take this partnership working a step further and merge the two school sixth forms in Hove into one.
“The college will be sited at Hove Park School and students would join the new joint provision from September 2018.
“As a result of this the governors have asked the local authority to take forward a proposal to change the age range of Blatchington Mill from 11 to 18 as it is at present to 11 to 16 and the local authority is currently considering this request.”
Blatchington Mill head teacher Ashley Harrold said: “Our school sixth form has been hugely successful in ensuring our students made it to university, employment or further training.
“Over the past 10 years the college has excelled in ensuring that students who wanted to continue their studies in a school-based setting could thrive.
“However, as a small college, it has become increasingly difficult to offer suitable breadth of subjects for all students to study.
“Changes to post-16 funding over the past five years have made it impossible to maintain a broad and varied curriculum – which we see as essential – with the number of students we have on roll at the college.
“For the past two years, we have collaborated with Hove Park School and shared a joint offer of courses across both sites.
“This partnership has been highly successful and the two colleges share the same ethos of excellent pastoral care and support for students.
“The proposal, which we have asked the local authority to consider, is to formally combine the two sixth forms – for the ongoing benefit of students in Hove.
“There are a range of fantastic post-16 institutions across the city and the proposed new joint sixth form will work alongside those providers to deliver a diverse post-16 offer that meets the needs of all students.”
Hove Park head teacher Jim Roberts said: “The proposed combining of HP6 and Blatch6 based here at Hove Park will ensure students continue to access high-quality post-16 provision in a school setting.
“We are very proud of our sixth form and the bespoke culture and ethos that has been established over time to ensure each student is known and supported as an individual.
“Working in partnership over the last couple of years has been an important step forward in ensuring we meet the needs of a variety of students.
“The proposal of a joint sixth form strengthens this commitment and secures this provision for the future.”
The schools added: “The proposal would take effect from September 2018 and would not affect students currently studying at the college, who will all be able to complete their courses.”
LIKE WHAT WE DO? HELP US TO DO MORE OF IT BY DONATING HERE.