Frequently Asked Questions

College Life

Do I have to wear a uniform?

Sixth form students do not have uniform requirements, you are allowed to wear whatever you feel most comfortable in. We just ask that students wear clothing that is appropriate for a learning environment.

How do I know where to go for my classes?

Students will be given a personalised timetable that details what lessons they have, what room they are in and who their teacher will be. The College is laid out in department areas and teaching takes place in rooms associated with that department, so finding the way around quickly becomes second nature. Maps are also provided on taster days and students have an induction to ensure they are comfortable with where they need to go. 

How long am I expected to attend college each day?

The basic College day runs from 8.30am to 3.00pm with lessons starting at 9.00am. Sixth Form students are free to come and go from the College site when they do not have a lesson or other activity. Depending on their timetable this will mean students could have some late starts and some early finishes. Twice weekly Sixth Form students are required to be in at 8.30am to come together for assembly and tutor time.

I'm not catholic, can I still attend St Paul's?
Absolutely! We are a welcoming school, and we invite everyone to join us. We hope that we express our Catholic values through our actions, namely that we are kind, generous and supportive towards others. This means that we value each and every person regardless of their beliefs or background. We also express our values by making time to pray and reflect on what is going on in our lives and the world around us. We say a short prayer in tutor time and have occasional liturgies (common prayer) with wider groups in the school. At heart, what we are doing here is thanking God for all the good things we have. 
We also believe that God gave us good brains and curiosity, so we want students to be inspired by their subjects and activities and to become intellectually and socially independent. No sheep allowed! Be yourself! We challenge students to find meaning in the world and to take positive action as a result. We believe that this will enable students to flourish and be happy. 
What kind of facilities are available to use?
Our modern purpose-built campus provides excellent teaching spaces with designated areas for each subject including high-tech science labs, practical technology areas and adaptable classrooms. There is a Sixth Form specific wing of the College containing teaching areas, our large and airy Sixth Form Common Room and the Sixth Form Café which provides hot and cold food and good quality coffee. The College also has a designated chapel offering a quiet, calm space for personal reflection.  
The sports facilities at St Paul’s are excellent with a full size, FA-approved 3G sports pitch, as well as five tennis courts, basketball court and a sports hall providing opportunity for numerous indoor sports. The whole College is level and accessible to students with additional needs including wheelchair access. Just across the road from St Paul’s is the Triangle Leisure Centre that has gym, swimming and numerous other facilities which students can also access on a student membership. The Triangle has direct access through an underpass from the College allowing for safe, easy passage. 


How do I apply for a course?

At St Paul’s we use an online application form directly to the College. Please complete this form which can be found here detailing the courses you are currently studying as well as those you would like to take. The deadline for applications is Friday 15th December. We will invite students to attend an interview in the Spring to discuss their options and ensure the right pathway for each individual. 

Can I apply for both A Level and BTEC based courses?

Yes! Provided they have the appropriate grades at GCSE and an average point score of 5.3 or higher, students can choose between a solely A Level based curriculum, a wholly BTEC timetable or a combination of the two. We will discuss a student’s options with them to ensure they are choosing appropriate courses to make them successful in their chosen future. 

Can I apply for a course if I have not got a relevant GCSE?

Most A level courses do have a GCSE requirement in either that subject or a related one if it is not commonly studied at GCSE. However, there are several that do not and all the BTEC courses have no previous related study requirements. To get onto the Level 3 Sixth Form provision, students will be expected to have at least five GCSEs at grade 4 or higher.

What happens if I do not achieve the grades I need?

If things do not go as well as hoped with GCSE results, we may still offer a place at St Paul’s to all students. However, their course choice may be limited. If a student does not obtain a grade 4 or better in English Language and/ or Maths GCSE, there is a legal requirement that students retake these qualifications.


What is the length of a lesson?

Lessons are 50 minutes long with a maximum of six lessons in a day. 

How many students are in each class?

The majority of our classes are small with less than fifteen students; however, this will vary depending on the subject and students’ choices that year. Since we build our timetable based on the courses students have chosen on their application form, we can put on additional classes to ensure class sizes remain small. The maximum in any class would be approximately twenty four.


Is there available student parking?

Our campus allows for plenty of parking which student are welcome to use. We just ask them to register their car with the main office for security and safety purposes. There is also additional parking at the Triangle Leisure Centre across the road. 

What buses are available to take me to St Paul's?

Several bus companies run services to St Paul’s at the beginning and end of the day. Spaces on these are organised directly with the company but we can provide information from the appropriate provider. The number 100 bus also serves the Triangle Leisure Centre throughout the day and runs into Burgess Hill town centre, giving easy access to the station. 

How far is the nearest train station?
Burgess Hill and Wivelsfield stations are equidistant from St Paul’s, approximately a 30 minute walk away. These stations provide regular trains to London, Brighton and Lewes. 

Safety & Wellbeing

Is the college wheelchair accessable?

Yes. St Paul’s has elevators, accessible toilets and other facilities to allow students with any impairments to access the school and have an equal opportunity. 

Where do I go if I am struggling?
We all struggle sometimes, so you are not alone! Your natural first port of call is your tutor or, if you are struggling with a specific subject, the teacher of that subject. We also have 3 specialist staff who lead the Sixth Form who have seen a lot before and would love to help you. If you want to talk to a Senior Prefect, they are available and give a helpful insight from a student’s perspective.  
Several members of staff, including on the Sixth Form team, are Designated Safeguarding Leads (DSLs). This means that they are the people to turn to if you are uncomfortable or feel that your physical or emotional safety and dignity might not be being respected. You will see who they are when you come in and they are all contactable via email. 
We are also lucky to have a College chaplain and Fr Chris, who are a great help, as is the quiet time you can have for yourself in the chapel. If you need Learning Support, we have a welcoming group of experts in that department, and the same goes even for any IT struggles you are having! Finally, we also have a College counsellor who is a trained professional who is available on request.