Year 10 is important to you as it marks the start of your examination courses. Most subjects are compulsory but for the first time you will choose some of the subjects you will study with the guidance of your teachers.

The curriculum has been designed to ensure that there is a way forward for all of you. There are a great variety of talents; some are more abstract and ‘bookish’ while others involve the ability to organise, get on with people, work in a team, solve problems, provide leadership and be responsible for your own learning and so on. They are all highly regarded.

We are all different and we all have our strengths and weaknesses. What is required of you, the student, is a willingness to work hard. You are all capable of success and we will be expecting you to succeed. It is a time for you to start thinking about what you want to do with your life. Ask yourself which subjects you like best and discuss with your teachers what they could lead to. You will be receiving careers advice during Year 10 and going on Work Experience for a week, which may give you some ideas.

Most young people continue their education beyond Year 11 so start to consider what might be suitable for you. Many courses in Year 10 lead directly to more advanced courses in the Sixth Form. We will help you to set targets for yourself for the next two years so you are prepared for the opportunities post 16 can offer you. If you are not sure see your Form Teacher or Year Tutor. Mr K Jones and I would be very pleased to have a chat about your plans.

During these two years you must learn to plan your work and take responsibility for private study. Many of your subjects will have coursework, or projects, which need to be done in your own time. You must organise your time so as to be able to do them as well as possible. It is most important you attend school regularly because absences have a direct effect on examination results. You need also to think of the kind of person you want to be and understand how much punctuality and the personal qualities of courtesy and reliability are valued.

Take advantage of the opportunities in school and in your neighbourhood to join in activities such as sport, drama and music. They could give you great pleasure now and also when you are an adult.

This booklet sets out to tell you and your parents a little about what subjects and courses are onoffer for you here at St Albans’s read it carefully. Some subjects change drastically between Years 9 and 10, so find out all about them before you decide. There are also some subjects on offer that you won’t have studied before. Lastly, please don’t be afraid to ask for help!

I would like to wish you all the best for the next two years and for your future.

Stephen Lord