Giving students the Advantage

Posted on 1st Jul 2016 in School News, Which London School?

Christine Cunniffe, Principal at LVS Ascot, offers guidance on what benefits a good school should provide sixth form students with along with top A level grades...

For all good schools there should be more to years 12 and 13 than just exams. It is very easy for schools to be drawn in to focusing on these at the expense of everything else, but we believe that there is far more to preparing students for university and work that can be done alongside providing the vital qualifications.

The world of work, and to a lesser extent university, have the potential to take young adults out of their comfort zone, and whilst the qualifications are what will get them there, how do you ensure they are confident and equipped to deal with the new challenges they will face?

We are committed to ensuring that once in work or further education, LVS Ascot has provided them with the necessary tools to go on and excel, by helping them develop that ‘X Factor’ they will need to shine in a rapidly changing and demanding workplace.

That’s why LVS Ascot has created our LVS Advantage programme, giving students the opportunity to experience an enriching course outside of the academic arena in business management. Working with a business development consultancy, the programme consists of six modules and students from years 12 and 13 are encouraged to apply. By its conclusion, they are equipped with negotiation skills and knowledge of how to deal with conflict management, effective communication and strategic decision making, as well as learning key concepts of competitive advantage and marketing and operations.

This type of programme is just one of the ways a school can help sixth formers develop additional skills to complement their academic studies. In December a group of LVS Ascot sixth formers celebrated receiving unique awards thanks to our rare position as the only school in the country able to offer pupils an Institute in Leadership & Management course.

LVS Ascot is owned and managed by the Licensed Trade Charity, which became an approved ILM centre in 2011. This has given us the ability to not only provide valuable in-house training to staff, but also offer sixth formers the opportunity to get ahead via a qualification unavailable in schools anywhere else in the UK. 

The ILM Level 2 Award in Effective Team Member Skills gives students the chance to learn the importance of communication, adapt their own styles of learning and communication, improve negotiation skills and learn how to adapt in a business environment. The facilities at LVS Ascot allow course leaders to create a business environment on site separate from the school, and students have access to support from staff who have experienced the ILM process, allowing greater direction and support on the assignment which follows an intensive two day course. 

Five students in Year 13 saw their achievements celebrated at a special assembly where they received their certificates for the ILM Level 2 Award in Effective Team Member Skills, something which course trainer Jackie Green says will be an important advantage to them in future: “The ILM qualification is recognised worldwide, and for students having it on their CV is a definite plus when applying for universities and jobs. It helps so much in the transition from education to business by enhancing communication, negotiation and team work”.

The Institute of Leadership & Management offers the UK’s widest range of leadership and management qualifications, and with 35,000 managers members of ILM, LVS Ascot is keen to ensure its pupils have the best possible start to life and leave fully equipped for successful careers. We always seek to attain greater academic achievement and enhance career prospects, helping students to aim for, and reach, new heights. The ILM qualification is a great way of doing this as it is such a unique qualification that it sets our students apart and gives them a boost going into university and careers.

Besides additional courses such as LVS Advantage and the ILM award, which enrich and build on the knowledge and interpersonal skills students gather during their time at school, there are also other ways schools can be innovative to help students prepare for life beyond the school and learn valuable interpersonal skills.

We are really focused on helping our students build personal attributes such as communication and leadership. The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is a perfect way to achieve that, and our students are gaining so much valuable experience from it. We are an accredited training centre and so committed to the benefits students receive from the scheme that we now have a dedicated Head and Assistant of Outdoor Pursuits, which is rare for a school.

The scheme is thriving – over 100 students started on it last year with their Bronze Award – and in February several of our students went to St James’s Palace to be presented with Gold Awards in the presence of the Duke of Edinburgh himself, following others who achieved the same feat the previous year. This was a particularly notable achievement as it is rare to complete the award whilst still at school and highlighted our ability to guide students successfully through the various sections to be completed. 

LVS Ascot aims to develop caring, confident citizens for the future. With excellent teaching supported by building additional skills to prepare students for life beyond the school, we are able to achieve this. 

For more information about LVS Ascot, see their profile on School Search.