It’s time to start thinking about your daughter / son’s next steps after year 11. The below information is designed to help you support your daughter or son to take the next steps.

What the law says about post-16 options…

The official school leaving date is the last Friday of June of the school year in which they turn 16. Also, did you know that the government has increased the age that students must continue in learning?

Year 11 students must be in some form of learning until they are 18 years old. You can choose from the following:

  • Full-time study in a school, college or with a training provider.
  • An apprenticeship.
  • Full-time work (including working in a family business) or volunteering combined with part-time education/training. 

A new booklet has been developed that includes activities to help Year 11 students to explore further education courses and colleges, apprenticeship options and career ideas. Students have been using it in their Personal Development lessons. You can access a PDF version of this booklet by clicking here.


What to study?

The first decision a student needs to make is what to study. There are lots of different subjects and courses to choose from.

Options include general qualifications and vocational qualifications. General qualifications include GCSEs and A levels. These qualifications prepare you for a range of different careers, rather than focusing on a specific job. Reasons for choosing A levels include being good at a subject, enjoying a subject and needing it for a future option/career.

In contrast, vocational qualifications are work-related and can give you the skills needed for a broad area of work or train you for a specific job. Courses are usually practical and involve hands-on projects. Examples of vocational courses include engineering, childcare, hair & beauty, motor vehicle, health & social care and business. Plus there are lots more!

Where to study?

The second decision they need to make is where to study. For example, at Moseley, at another school that has a sixth form, a college or a specialist college.

They may want to stay at Moseley as they know the teachers and are happy here. Alternatively, they may want a change of scenery and decide that another school or college would be better for them.

It will also depend on what they want to study. For example, if they want to do A levels they will need to find a school or college that offers all the ones that interest them. Please note, not all colleges offer A levels (for example, Solihull College) and some colleges may offer A levels at a particular campus (for example, BMET only offers A levels at their campus in Sutton Coldfield).

If they wish to do a practical vocational course, such as motor vehicle studies, you will find that these courses are usually offered by colleges that specialise in vocational courses, such as Solihull College and South & City College (and not, for example, at sixth form colleges such as Joseph Chamberlain College, Cadbury College and Solihull 6th Form College).

There are also newer specialist colleges to consider, such as Aston University Engineering Academy (they specialise in engineering and science courses) and Birmingham Ormiston Academy (who specialise in creative, digital and performing arts courses).

It’s therefore really important that your daughter or son first decides what course or courses they want to do and then find out which schools and colleges offer them.

Research is the key to making an informed decision.

Students need to use school and college websites to check out courses available and to make online applications (ideally by Christmas). We also recommend that they attend school/college open days/evenings. As a result of COVID-19, open days are likely to be virtual and will provide an excellent opportunity to:

  • Explore school/college campuses and to check out facilities.
  • Check which courses are available, how they are taught, how they are assessed and their entry requirements.
  • Meet subject teachers and ask questions.
  • Find out more about the application and interview process.
  • Find out about the pastoral support available.

Year 11 students have been given a list of local college open days/evenings; but check out school/college websites for the latest information (you usually have to book online to attend). Here are the website addresses of local colleges:

For details of other school sixth form open days or colleges out of the local area, please visit their website.

Did you know?

In 2019, 93% of Moseley School Year 11 leavers remained in education and the top 3 most popular destinations were:

  1. Moseley School and Sixth Form.
  2. Joseph Chamberlain College.
  3. South & City College.

Will GCSE grades affect the courses students can apply for?

Yes. To study level 3 courses (such as A levels or BTEC courses) students will usually need a minimum of 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9-4 (many will want this to include maths and English).


Some schools and colleges may want a grade 6 (or higher) to study a specific subject. For example, Moseley School requires a grade 6 in maths GCSE to study A level maths.

If students mainly get grades 3 or 2 in their GCSEs they could consider doing a level 2 course for one year, such as GCSE resits or a BTEC course (plus maths and English GCSE re-sits). For example, if they got all grade 3s in their GCSEs and wanted to study health & social care, they could study the one-year BTEC level 2 health & social care course (and re-sit their maths and English GCSEs). If successful, this could then lead to the two-year BTEC level 3 extended diploma in health & social care (equivalent to 3 A levels).

Alternatively, if their grades are lower than 3s and 2s, they may want to consider taking a level 1 vocational course for one year (plus maths and English GCSE re-sits).

For some courses, they may have to start at level 1 or level 2 as they have to learn the basics first e.g. motor vehicle courses.


An apprenticeship is like a job and students need to demonstrate a strong interest in their chosen apprenticeship area and be ready to start a job!

Apprenticeship entry requirements vary. You have to check apprenticeship vacancies to see if there are any specific subjects and/or grades you need to have. For example, some may want 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9-4, others may ask for a Level 2 qualification in English and maths (such as GCSEs at grades 9-4). Others may ask you to take a numeracy and literacy test before you are accepted onto the apprenticeship.

Although apprenticeships are advertised through-out the year, ones for Year 11 students will mostly be advertised later in the school year (April/May onwards). However, some large employers, such as Jaguar, usually have an earlier deadline (such as December/January).

You can search and apply for apprenticeships using the national apprenticeship website – go to

Other useful websites are:

Students can also check out employer websites if they have a particular employer in mind.

Did you know?

Students that start an apprenticeship earn a salary, get paid holidays, receive training, gain qualifications and earn job-specific skills. Lots of different types of apprenticeships are available and the top 4 types with the most opportunities in Birmingham last year were:

  1. Business and law.
  2. Engineering and manufacturing.
  3. Health and care.
  4. Information and Communication Technology. 

It’s also possible to get a degree by doing an apprenticeship. This is called a degree apprenticeship. Degree apprentices earn a salary and don’t have to pay university tuition fees, saving them £9,250 a year!

Enterprise Adviser - We welcome Isa mutlib


We would like to introduce you to the school’s new Enterprise Adviser, Isa Mutlib, who will be supporting the school to promote apprenticeships.

Isa Mutlib is the CEO of The BAME Apprenticeship Alliance, an organisation that works with young people from communities to encourage them to consider apprenticeships as an alternative to university.

Isa says “I’m thrilled to be an enterprise adviser for Moseley School. The opportunities now available through apprenticeships for your child are extraordinary. Nearly every single major company is offering an apprenticeship. They can get a really good job with big brand companies, gain a qualification and even a degree in many fields all whilst being paid for it and walk away with no debt. I’m excited to share more information on what apprenticeships are with you over the next 12 months.”

Isa is also keen for parents and carers to contact him if you have questions about apprenticeships or want to know more about apprenticeships. Contact him at:

Year 11 Careers Support

The school provides the following support during Year 11 to help your daughter or son make an informed post-16 decision:

  • An opportunity for a 1:1 careers interview with the school’s qualified careers adviser, Mr Silgram.
  • A presentation from the school’s careers adviser about post-16 options.
  • Careers lessons as part of the Personal Development curriculum.
  • Year 11 Careers Booklet.
  • Online careers support – email Mr Silgram at
  • Apprenticeship event on 30 April.
  • Careers advice and support on GCSE results day.
  • The careers section of the school website. Click here for Careers Advice and Guidance
use the School Website to support your daughter / son

You can use the website to help your daughter or son to make an informed decision about what to do after Year 11.

It includes further information about all the topics in this newsletter. There are 16 sections and you may find it helpful to check-out the following ones:

  • Options after Year 11.
  • Apprenticeships and traineeships.
  • Further education.
  • Parents and carers.
  • Useful websites and information.

Click here for Careers Advice and Guidance

Term Dates

School News

Student Handbook

Photo Gallery

School Website Design by Blue Apple Education