Fifth Year is the first year of the Senior Cycle Programme which is of two years duration and culminates in the Leaving Certificate or International Baccalaureate examinations. Fifth Year marks a big change of gear from Transition Year as students are now encouraged to focus more on the academic side while at the same time maintaining a balance to ensure that they can maximise their potential. Consequently the Fifth Year Programme is wide ranging and offers substantial and continued support to our students. Some of these support networks are:
It is important that Fifth Year students choose subjects which they find stimulating and which will help them remain interested and focused. At St Andrew’s we are aware of this and consequently hold a Subject Options Information Evening for prospective Fifth Year students in January or February of the previous academic year. All parents and students are encouraged to attend. Another Information Evening held at the start of Fifth Year. This is to ensure that students and parents have all the information they need and to allow for any additional questions regarding the Fifth Year Programme.
Fifth Years are encouraged to be proactive in their study so that they perform well in examinations. Consequently they have access to the library from 8a.m to 6p.m. daily. Additionally the progress of Fifth Year students is constantly monitored. Five reports (in October, December, February, April and June) are sent to parents during the year to help gauge the individual progress of each student. Based on these reports, additional support may be offered to those students who are not reaching the grades they desire.
Guidance and Careers Department
The College provides qualified careers staff who work with our Fifth Year students, helping to guide them regarding their career options and providing them with information on prospective universities they may wish to attend either in Ireland or abroad.
A motivation and optimum exam performance day
This occurs in August, at the start of the academic year. All Fifth Year students spend a day with a team of experts to enhance their motivation and study techniques for the year ahead. This day emphasizes for students the importance of Fifth Year in laying a solid foundation for academic success in the final exams at the end of Sixth Year.
Relationships and sexual education programme
Fifth Year students are educated on the responsibilities they should be aware of as they reach adulthood. This programme is given by a team of qualified teachers who examine key issues such as sexuality, relationships, addictions, depression and substance abuse. This programme is conducted over the course of a day. Students are split into small groups and are encouraged to ask any questions they may have.
Mentor and Prefect programme:
We believe that Fifth Year students should have the opportunity to demonstrate their maturity. Therefore in Fifth Year they will have the opportunity to apply to become a college Prefect and Mentor to our First Year students.
Extra curricular Activities
Fifth Year students are encouraged to take part in the vast range of extra-curricular activities the school has to offer. Sport has always played a major part in the history of St. Andrew’s. From September to March students have the opportunity to participate in rugby, hockey, badminton and basketball. From mid-March until the end of May students can participate in cricket, athletics, tennis and soccer. At St. Andrew’s we are aware that not all students may have a desire to play sport. Therefore we offer additional extra-curricular activities such as Model United Nations, drama, choir, debating, computer club, and Christian Union. At St. Andrew’s we like to believe that we have something to offer every student.
Our Sixth Year Students are young adults who accept the responsibilities which come with adulthood. Therefore in this their final year in the College, we endeavour to prepare them for the freedoms and pressures of life in general and for third level education in particular.
With this in mind we grant students a number of privileges such as:
- The sole use of a dedicated Sixth Year Centre which includes a social space, tuition rooms and study room
- Freedom to leave the College Campus during break and lunch to visit local shops
- After-school study facilities
- Sixth Year students are allowed (with parental permission) to return home to study after 2.30pm only if no scheduled classes are available. This privilege is designed to allow students who wish to do so to study at home. Click here for consent to leave form.
Our Sixth Year Team recognises that in order for students to fulfill their potential they need constant support. We use student driven Individual Educational Plans to ensure that students are focused on their goals and that they reach their targets throughout the year, ultimately achieving a successful Leaving Certificate/ International Baccalaureate.
We support students by providing a strong pastoral care structure, creating a partnership between students, parents, subject teachers and form teachers. The Headmistress, a Year Head and the Guidance Department provide additional support to this core group.
The Sixth Year students traditionally provide leadership to the rest of the student body, playing an active part in all College activities. They act as Mentors to incoming First Years, perform duties as college Prefects, participate in sport, provide the backbone to the MUN and Grapevine and lead the student body in other activities such as the college Choir, One Act Drama group, the college Musical and many other areas.
The Sixth Year students are led by Student Officers elected by the student body and staff. Their duties range from leading the Student Council and representing the College at formal events to liaising with the Sixth Year Team on all matters related to the student body.