We believe that every child, no matter their academic profile, should aspire to become an independent learner and thinker.
We begin this process in First Year and continue to foster this spirit of inquiry in lessons and co-curricular activities as pupils move up the school. Subject teachers work closely with individual pupils to offer stretch, challenge and support, with our small class sizes providing the flexibility to tailor learning experiences.
The school offers the HPQ (Higher Project Qualification) for Third/Fourth Year pupils and EPQ (Extended Project Qualification) for Lower Sixth pupils, in which they work closely with a supervisor (usually a member of staff who does not teach them) to research, plan and deliver a 'product' of their choice. The skills developed in these project qualifications - independence, critical thinking and reflection - support pupils with their wider academic programmes as well as being highly valued by universities and employers.
It is vital that pupils do not equate all learning with assessment. To this end, pupils compete in a range of co-curricular external competitions including Maths, and Science Olympiads. We also offer a wide range of co-curricular lunchtime and after-school activities, as well as many departmental trips throughout the year. The Symposium Lecture series, a weekly after-school talk delivered by an external or internal speaker, is open to all Fifth year and Lower and Upper Sixth pupils.
Professor David Crystal OBE with Pocklington School Upper Sixth Form students, following his lecture at the school
Pupils interested in applying for competitive courses in Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Science and Physiotherapy are strongly supported in the Sixth Form with university choices, personal statements, work experience opportunities and interview practice. We are involved in Problem Based Learning Facilitator training at Hull York Medical School and clinical work experience at Hull Royal Infirmary (particularly relevant for Medicine). In addition, we welcome visiting professionals to offer advice and support with mock interviews (both traditional and Multi Mini Interview).
Our Oxbridge Advisor identifies and supports potential applicants to Oxford and Cambridge from the end of Fifth Year through to Upper Sixth. We invite speakers from both universities to visit school in early November to address pupils in these year groups. We also travel to Oxford and Cambridge in February and June of the Lower Sixth year, staying in college accommodation where possible, meeting current students and attending subject-specific talks.
In Upper Sixth, Oxbridge applicants benefit from an extensive programme of mock interviews, personal statement sessions and activities that support their preparation for both applications and Oxbridge study. We are also fortunate to have a number of Old Pocklingtonians who attended Oxford or Cambridge and willingly come back to advise current pupils.