Our Lady's Abingdon - Why I Chose OLA 6th – Student Stories

Why I Chose OLA 6th – Student Stories

Alice's story

“I’m Alice and I’m now studying History of Art and French at the University of Bristol. I was fortunate to be a part of the lovely community at OLA and look back at my time there very fondly. Throughout my GCSEs and A Levels I was encouraged by a fantastic range of hard-working, inspiring and supportive staff whose enthusiasm for their subjects really showed. At Sixth Form what especially stood out to me was the quality of teaching. For instance, with smaller class sizes we received a great deal of academic support and really bonded with fellow students, many of whom I’m sure will be friends for life.

What I most appreciated about OLA was the absence of an excessively high-pressured environment. This not only helped me flourish as a person but also meant I was the most relaxed and prepared I could possibly be to take my exams. For me, this was the deciding factor in choosing OLA. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my time there and feel proud to have been a part of the school.”

Isabel's story

“Why did I chose OLA 6th for A-levels? I did look around at other schools as we had when searching for a secondary school.

The sixth form closest to where I live was unable to offer me my 4 choices at A-level of Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Chemistry even though they take 270 students a year! They offered me Biology instead of Physics but I want to study engineering at university.

The local technical college could offer my 4 A-levels but there would be no Duke of Edinburgh, no drama and no sport there.

OLA offered me the 4 subjects I wanted and can provide the co-curricular I enjoy. I’m really pleased to be staying here where the teachers already know me so well and my friends are. I’m already working on my Duke of Edinburgh Gold and the staff are already helping me with my army and university applications. I also know that if we go back into lockdown OLA teachers will deliver my full timetable remotely. Thank you, OLA!”

Freddie's story

“I chose OLA Sixth Form, because I felt that the school was friendly and supportive in my decisions for what I wanted to do at A Level. They couldn’t have been more encouraging for me to do an A Level in Music, despite being the only student in my year on the course. This combined with some of the best teachers in the school for each one of my topics has given me a tremendous boost in confidence, reassuring me that I have made the right decision with the school. I feel the teachers and members of staff that are a part of the Sixth Form community are very helpful and are always available to talk about issues on a wide range of topics. I am so grateful to the school for all of the hard work they do for their students, in order to help us achieve our best.”

Ben’s story

“I have been at OLA since Year 7. When it came for me to decide if I wanted to go to another Sixth Form I decided against it. This was for many reasons; the main one being that I didn’t want to leave behind the relationships I had made specifically with the teachers. I get along well with them and I didn’t think going to another Sixth Form would be worth the time and effort when there was already a brilliant Sixth Form at OLA. Another factor was the subjects I had chosen for A Level (English, History, and Psychology) which are some of the School’s strongest departments. So I knew I would excel and enjoy my A Levels working in my current teachers classes. This all went through my head when I was thinking about Sixth Forms, which made the decision easy for me to stay at OLA. This is also a decision many of my peers decided to make, due to our outstanding GCSE grades as a year. We all exceeded our expectations at this school and want to do the same for our A Levels. With these reasons I am enjoying and excelling at OLA Sixth Form.”

Lianna's story

“Being one of the first international students at OLA has been a real pleasure. When applying for schools to study A Level in the UK, I received four offers. OLA became my final choice because it has a long history and mature educational system. I used to learn clarinet before coming to the UK, therefore OLA’s high ranking in music among UK schools attracted me. However, my passion for languages was another attraction to OLA.  My language teacher here is a native speaker. Lessons are taught in small groups, which has helped me in an unimaginable way. The excellent teaching team in the school, especially those who teach me Languages, Maths, Economics and the English Language Support classes are always ready to help me… even during their own break time!”

Imogen’s story

“OLA is a lively and innovative environment that allows you to express yourself in any way you choose to do so. This atmosphere has been created by the teachers who are really engaging and as the school is so small it allows for everyone to be friends with each other across all years. As I have help from learning support, I feel that the school is very good at nurturing and caring for all needs. The support that I received from learning support encouraged me to stay because I know that I have everything I need to help me if necessary. OLA Sixth Form allows everyone to take on a role of responsibility no matter how small, I think this prepares us for the future as we learn the idea of true commitment and it helps us develop into young adults with skills we can take into the future with us.”

Isabel’s story

“My decision to remain at OLA for Sixth Form has enabled me to be in a friendly, supportive environment, to have lots of opportunities to take on responsibilities (such as House Captain, Mentor and Ambassador). The wealth of experiences I have had from studying at OLA means that I have been elected as Head Girl. Staying at this friendly and stimulating school is the best decision I have ever made.”

Ziyi’s story

“I chose OLA for Sixth Form to be with friends and to learn in a positive and caring environment that encourages me to achieve my full potential.”

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