I’m an international student in Longley Park Sixth Form. I came to UK in January 2023 and I struggled so much because lot of colleges in Sheffield didn’t accept me because I didn’t have my GCSE Maths and English, but I had my GCE results with me that I did in Sri Lanka. After searching colleges for months, I found Longley Park Sixth Form. I applied and went to the interview because I really wanted to know more about Longley Park Sixth Form and how Sixth Form supports students. I was lucky enough to have received a conditional offer from Longley Park Sixth Form and the started at the sixth form in September 2023. My family and I truly appreciate this opportunity.
When I was in my Sri Lankan school, I didn’t have much freedom. If I tell the truth, I only had 7 hours to rest and sleep because they always pushed us to do our studies and our day started at 7am. As Sri Lankan students, we didn’t have the freedom to do what we love to do in our life. Schools do not let students do part-time work because teachers used to tell us that it would interfere with our studies and that we should not be financially independent until we have finished our studies. They didn’t even let us to do any extra activities. As students it was hard for us to be ourselves.
But when it comes to Longley Park Sixth Form it’s totally different compared to my previous school in Sri Lanka. For example, they give students their freedom to do what they love to do. They don’t push us to do what we don’t like to do and that is one of good point I saw in Longley Park Sixth Form. They give freedom to students to do extra activities additionally from studies. They even do different kinds of events for students, so they can enjoy their college life in Longley Park Sixth Form.
Longley Park Sixth Form encourages student to do independent studies, but in my previous school we had to follow what our teachers told us to do, if we didn’t do it, they punished us. But in Longley Park Sixth Form they give freedom for students for their studies. From this, students have good opportunity to learn by themselves and gain knowledge about their subjects. Moreover, from independent learning students can gain additional knowledge, on top of what the teachers teach students. We have lot of work to do in college, but it doesn’t feel like it’s too much because teachers are organised and help you plan your time wisely for assignments.
The staff in Longley Park Sixth Form friendly and supportive and easy to talk well as the subject teachers in the college. When I had a hard time adjusting to college, the staff supported me, and it’s really helped me to build friendships and confidence for my education. When I was in Sri Lanka I only talked to my Principal and Vice Principals twice in 12 years, but in here it is not like that; I talk to the Principal Jamie and other staff in LPSF all the time. They all support students and encourage them to do their best. However, in my pervious school this didn’t happen. They always helped teachers’ children and whose parents are in high position in society and they didn’t care about normal students who attend to school. But in LPSF they are so supportive, and they help every student who need help from the school or teachers.
What I see in LPSF subjects’ teachers is that they are supportive for students, and they help students’ when they need help. One time I was struggling mentally in the middle of the lesson. My teacher saw this and came to me and asked me whether I’m okay or not and helped me handle the situation and other teachers in that subject helped me to. However, in my previous school, our teachers asked us whether we had a problem with the subject that they taught us and if we say, “I have a question” they would scold us for not listening to them. But in LPSF they allow us to ask any question that we need answering, and they even teach us again the parts that we didn’t understand clearly. What I see in LPSF is they have excellent teachers to teach subjects to students.
Since I have to GCSE Maths and English in my timetable, I’m not currently able to join any clubs or activities in LPSF. Hopefully once I pass these subjects, I will have more time to enjoy a club. But I was impressed by the number of clubs and activities on offer at LPSF, and how they help students with those activities along their studies. They even have a LGBT+ club and the college and students respect every kind of students; they won’t look down at them because of their preference. I really love that in LPSF.
After finishing my college life I’m planning to go to university and then hopefully study for PhD. I had no idea what I should do in my future and had no idea about what career that I should choose. But from tutorial lessons and my course work, I thought I would be a Professor in Business. I’m thankful for Longley Park Sixth Form for giving me idea about what career path I should I choose and how should I work to achieve it.