Offering an insight into life at Cheltenham’s independent senior school, sixth former George Hanks talks education, achievements and leadership opportunities in this interview with SoGlos.
Please can you tell SoGlos readers a little bit about yourself, and your education at St Edward’s Senior School?
My name is George Hanks, I’m 17 and a student at St Edward’s Sixth Form. I have studied here since Year 7; I sat 13 GSCES achieving 10A* 2 A’s and an A Distinction in Further Mathematics. I am now in my last year sitting Mathematics, Biology and Physics.
What is life like as a Sixth Former and what extra facilities can you look forward to?
Life as a sixth former at St Edward’s School is amazing. The community and people here are great. There is so much to do such as sports, music, drama, business, technology and even academic based extra-curricular activities to get involved with. There will always be something that you can be a part of.
Life as a sixth former at St Edward’s School is amazing. The community and people here are great. There will always be something that you can be a part of.
What do you like about the Sixth Form curriculum at St Edward’s?
The sixth form curriculum at St Edward’s is focused around your chosen subjects, with roughly 11 lessons per subject per fortnight. This gives lots of teaching time during the 55-minute lessons but it also includes for study time, PSHE, games and visiting speakers (every other week).
These aim to teach life skills, prepare you for university life and give you more freedom and responsibility.
How do you think you benefit from the small class sizes in Sixth Form?
St Edward’s typically has very small class sizes with never more than 15 pupils per class. This will depend on subject choices, but even so, these class sizes will be very small compared to other schools.
This allows teachers to know students much better, allowing them to help if necessary and push further when appropriate. Lessons also feel much more direct and can be catered to how individuals or small groups learn best.
Can you tell us a little bit about the extracurricular activities on offer at St Edward’s Sixth Form?
At St Edward’s there is a huge range of extra-curricular activities. Personally, I have been involved in the senior rugby team with sports being a huge part of sixth form life. However, there are a wide variety for those who don’t just like sport, such as choirs, school productions and a young enterprise team.
What are the benefits of getting involved in the leadership programme and becoming a prefect?
Last year, I was a science prefect and now I’m a house captain. These positions have taught me a lot about time management, leadership and organisation. They have also helped me get involved with the school community more, especially with the younger pupils. Not to mention that they are also lots of fun!
You will learn a lot of skills at St Edward’s that will help you in further education and beyond.
What would you say is the main benefit of getting involved with activities outside of the classroom?
The main benefit in my opinion would be the skills you learn, whether its team-work on the sports field, leadership as a prefect or time management as a member of cast in the school production. You will learn a lot of skills that will help you in further education and beyond.
How do you maintain a balance between extracurricular activities and academic achievements?
Personally, I find that good planning and organisation allows me to maintain a good balance, but doing work when set and keeping on top of tasks can prevent me feeling stressed or overwhelmed. Also, taking time to take a step back and relax prevents burnout and losing track of tasks.
What do you personally think the best thing about life and an education at St Edward’s?
My favourite thing about life and education at St Edward’s is the support and sense of community. Teachers helping me push myself beyond the curriculum and peers pushing me outside my comfort zones and supporting the decisions I make is something I have found to be invaluable.
And finally, what are you plans for life after St Edward’s?
After my exams this summer I am going full time in creating my own business. I am hoping to start a clothing company this year and further pursue my goals within the fitness industry.
For more information about St Edward’s Senior School visit stedwards.co.uk directly.