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30 March 2020
By Sam Lain-Rose

COVID-19: Support and Guidance for Year 11 students

We know that it has been incredibly difficult recently. COVID-19 (Coronavirus) has affected everyone and in these unprecedented times, things can seem unsettling, uncertain and confusing.

I would like to reassure you that The Education People are working tirelessly to provide the support and guidance you and many young people need. We may not have all the answers – so please be patient with us and assured that as we do find out more, we will update you here on this information page.

The Education People have sent a letter to every young person in Year 11 about your plans for September and these should arrive from 24 April 2020. View the letter to Year 11 here.

Year 11 GCSE’s and what does that mean for you?

The government has announced that all GCSE exams are cancelled and how they calculate your grades are explained on the website.

Stay in touch with us

Kent County Council is required to stay in touch with young people for two years after Year 11 and provide free support and advice. To do this, The Education People will contact you at regular intervals. To find our more about how we do this, visit Kent County Council’s website.

We would really appreciate your time letting us know what your plans are for September by completing this September Guarantee online form. Please use the reference that was given to you on your letter or contact us (details below) to find out what your reference number is.

What shall I do if I haven’t applied for a post-16 place?

If you haven’t applied for a sixth form or college place after Year 11 – there is still time to do so.

Please visit KentChoices and school websites to see if they are still open for applications. It is a good idea to have a backup option for September and important that you consider the entry requirements against your expected grades. IF you still need support, please do not hesitate to book a telephone appointment by visiting here.

We are not clear how long things will take to get back to normal, however, it is still important for you to consider your post-16 options and make applications to the relevant providers. This is because after Year 11, young people are required by law to participate in one of the following options until their 18th birthday.

  • Stay in full-time education (i.e. sixth form or college)
  • Start an apprenticeship or training
  • Spend 20 hours or more a week working or volunteering, while in part-time education

I would like some advice on my options after Year 11

If you would like advice and guidance on your options after Year 11, you should first try to contact your school. If you need further help, do not hesitate to contact the National Careers Service hotline on 0800 100 900 or you can book a telephone appointment with our team by visiting here.

I want an apprenticeship, how do I apply?

We advise that you seek advice and guidance from a support adviser by booking here, particularly in these uncertain times. You can find more information about apprenticeships and browse vacancies by visiting ApprenticeKent or the National Apprenticeship website.

Please bear in mind that recruitment for a number of employers may be on hold due to COVID-19 or the way they recruit will be adapted, so you may not receive an immediate response.

I want to go to sixth form, how do I apply?

To apply for a sixth form place, please use the KentChoices website (wherever possible) or through the individual school websites, checking the closing date for applications for the individual school and their entry requirements.

I have applied for sixth form, what is going to happen now?

Young people awaiting offers from their school sixth form applications are encouraged to look out for communications from the school they have applied for.

Schools are awaiting further guidance and will update their applications via the school websites or by email when more clarity and information is available.

I want to go to college, how do I apply?

To apply for a college place, please use the KentChoices website and ensure you have checked their entry requirements.

I have applied for college, what is going to happen now?

Young people who have applied to a college in Kent, the colleges are doing everything they can to ensure a smooth application process in these challenging times. Each individual college are making their own contingency plans and will be in touch with every applicant.

Every college in Kent are still accepting applications for courses starting in September 2020, with these being processed as normal.

Ashford College

East Kent College (EKC) Group - (Ashford College, Broadstairs College, Canterbury College, Dover Technical College, Folkestone College and Sheppey College) 

  • EKC Group are unable to hold interviews with prospective students for the new academic year. However, rest assured that if you have been invited to an interview, the College have your contact details and will be getting in touch with you once they have some more clarity over when they will be able to reopen to interviews. Until then, EKC Group hope you stay safe and look forward to welcoming you into their College as soon as possible.

Hadlow College

  • Hadlow College has made the decision to postpone all scheduled interviews for prospective students. Their Applications Team will be in touch to advise them of the postponement and will provide updates as alternative measures are put in place

MidKent College 

  • MidKent College are offering those young people with an interview booked before Easter a telephone interview. Young people should check their emails for further information. Enquiries can be directed to [email protected]

North Kent College 

  • North Kent College are contacting those with existing interviews to rearrange and they are in the process of changing their acknowledgement message for new applications to explain how they will be dealt with in the future. Enquiries can be directed to: [email protected] and further information on their COVID-19 Strategy can be found here

West Kent College 

  • West Kent College have made the decision to postpone all scheduled interviews for prospective students. Their Applications Team will be in touch to advise them of the postponement and will provide updates as alternative measures are put in place.

Need information, advice and guidance on your options after Year 11?

Your school should be able to provide impartial information, advice and guidance about post-16 options available. However, due to many schools working with a ‘skeleton workforce’ you may find it easier to contact a free careers guidance team at your nearest college.

In addition, The Education People are able to provide free impartial information, advice and guidance for young people so be sure to get in touch!