Parent and Carer Information

Recording Here: New Lower Sixth Parent Information Event (virtual) - Monday 18th September, 6-7pm

This virtual event will be hosted by College Principal Justine Barlow and Deputy Principal Sarah Dumont. It provides an opportunity to find out more about how you can help your child through their studies, and will highlight the support your child will receive whilst they are a student here. There will also be the opportunity to ask any questions using the live chat feature.

PLEASE NOTE: If you are unable to attend the webinar live, please still register and you will automatically receive a follow-up email with a link to a recording so you can watch this on demand.


Recording Here: Lower Sixth Parent Progression Evening (virtual) - Thursday 18th April - 5.30pm-7pm

Notre Dame's Lower Sixth Parents' Progression Evening is for the parents and carers of lower sixth students took place online on Thursday 18th April. The webinar covered the UCAS application process, student finance, alternatives to university, and Notre Dame pastoral support. We hope this event will help you support your child with any applications to higher education, apprenticeships and / or employment. You can watch the recording below:


Reporting a Student Absence

If an absence from College is unavoidable, a parent/carer must contact the student's Achievement Tutor before the student's first timetabled lesson of the day. This can be done by emailing them directly or by calling College on 0113 2946644 and dialling the extension number for the Achievement Tutor when prompted (voicemail active). Please feel free to leave a message or request a call back.

The contact information you need for the student's Achievement Tutor is sent directly to the email address provided for parent/carer within the first week of the academic year. Please call and speak to the main office to check your email details if this email has not arrived.

Student timetables are available on our Cedar Parent Portal and we ask that any appointments be made outside of lesson times where at all possible. The term dates for College are available here. Students are not permitted to 'authorise' their own absence, evidence may need to be shown and Achievement Tutors will contact parents/carers if a pattern of unauthorised absence occurs.

Parent / Carer Mental Health Webinar Recording - Tuesday 7th December

Click below to find out how you can further support your child's mental health and wellbeing. 



As children get older and more independent, issues that affect them can be harder to spot and deal with. Learning about potential dangers can give you the knowledge and skills to act if there is a problem. It could also help keep your child safe by preventing problems before they happen. You know your child best, so if you’ve got a feeling something’s up – you’re right not to ignore it. You can access ParentWise below, which contains a range of advice and tips to support you:

ParentWise Website

Parent Letters and Information 2023-2024

We send half-termly newsletters to all parents - if your email address changed please let the college know.

Coronavirus Risk Assessment

Notre Dame Catholic Sixth Form College remains committed to providing high quality face-to-face education throughout the Coronavirus Pandemic. In response to the DfE we regularly review the arrangements we have in place to control the virus.

The fundamental controls that we have in place include:

  • Encouraging good hygiene from everyone 
  • Maintaining appropriate cleaning regimes 
  • Keeping occupied spaces well ventilated 
  • Following Public Health advice on managing confirmed cases of Covid 19. 
Term Dates



Leeds Uniform Exchange

Leeds School Uniform Exchange is a project launched by Zero Waste Leeds. We’re building a movement to help Leeds become a Zero Waste City by 2030 and as part of that we’re developing a school uniform re-use network across Leeds.


Carers Leeds

Carers Leeds offer support to people affected by the drug and/or alcohol use of someone they know, whether that is a family member, a loved one or a friend. We refer to this group as ‘concerned others’.


Lower Sixth Progression Parents Evening







Why does Notre Dame have internal UCAS deadlines? How do these work?

This is to ensure that there is sufficient processing time to meet the UCAS application deadlines. Once a student has completed their parts of the application the Achievement Tutor needs time to check for errors and then add a 4,000-character reference before sending it off to UCAS. This can take up to 10 working days. Internal deadlines keep everyone on track to meet the external deadlines and guarantee your application with be processed promptly.

How many courses can my child apply for?

Your child can apply for the same subject at up to five different universities. It is possible to apply for different subjects at different universities, but this can make it hard to write a strong personal statement. We would strongly advise your child not to apply for five different courses at the same university. Further guidance from UCAS is available here:

Only one university seems to offer my child’s chosen course. Can they apply for similar/related courses?

Yes, this is fine, so long as all five courses are similar enough to allow for a strong personal statement.

What’s the difference between foundation years and foundation degrees?

As it explains here, foundation years are an extra year of study at the start of the course that allows students who don’t have the required entry requirements to study a degree. They support students to develop the skills and knowledge they need to progress onto the first year of a degree. They are for people who haven’t studied the A-levels that the degree requires, or who didn’t get the grades they needed, or whose qualifications aren’t accepted for the course.

A foundation degree is equivalent to the first two years of a full degree and will take two years to complete if you’re studying full-time. A student can ‘top up’ their foundation degree to a full undergraduate degree with an extra year of study. The entry requirements for a foundation degree are usually more flexible than those for a full undergraduate degree. Find out more here:

Students can apply for both foundation years and foundation degrees through UCAS.

Is my child less likely to receive an offer from their fifth choice of university? / Do the individual universities see all five university choices or just their own?

When your UCAS application is sent to the universities you’ve chosen, they can’t see where else you’ve applied, or which university you put last – or first. So, this won’t affect the likelihood of you being offered a place by any particular university.

How many conditional offers from universities can you accept?

You will need to wait until all the universities you’ve applied to have sent you a response. If more than one university offers you a place, you can pick which one you’d prefer to go to and make this your firm choice. You can then pick a second university as your back-up plan and make this your insurance choice. Usually, the insurance choice has lower entry requirements. You can read more about this here: (Please ignore the deadlines given; these relate to current U6 students.)

Will Notre Dame be able to support any students who may be interested in studying abroad or undertaking a degree where there is an option to study abroad for part of the degree?

Yes. If students wish to study abroad, or apply for degrees that include a placement year abroad, the Careers Department can support them in their research.

My child wants to study in Europe, but I’m worried about finances. Will a student loan cover fees there?

If your child wants to study their whole degree abroad, UK student finance is unlikely to be available. If your child is a UK national, they will need to contact any universities they’d like to study at to ask what their fees will be and whether they will be eligible for financial support. 

A UK student studying in the EU may need to rely on savings, parental support and part-time work to cover living costs.

My child would like to attend the University of Leeds to study law. As they will be living at home, we’re wondering if that means they can only apply for a tuition fee loan?

Student finance consists of a tuition fee loan, which is paid directly to the university, and a maintenance loan, which the student is paid at the start of each term.

All UK nationals can apply for the tuition fee loan (see this webpage for eligibility details but how much maintenance loan your child receives will depend on your household income. University students who live at home receive a lower loan amount than those who live away. You can read more about this here:

You can also use this student finance calculator to estimate the loan your child will get:

Is student finance still available for students choosing a foundation year?

This depends. If the foundation year is an integral part of a course and, when they enrol at university, the students enrols for the entire course, then they can access student finance. If the foundation year prepares students to take a higher education course, then it may not be covered. We’d strongly advise students considering a foundation year to contact the college or university offering it to check if it’s eligible for student finance.

You can find out more about this here:

Can college find and support my child to get work experience and if so when does this happen in the college year? What happens now that some employers are no longer offering work experience?

Experience of the workplace is a vital part of our careers programme. All our students have opportunities to gain this experience through their curriculum subjects. This is an example:

In addition, students who wish to progress into certain degree subjects, or who intend to go into an apprenticeship or full-time employment after college, are advised to arrange and attend an onsite placement if possible. This can take place at the end of lower sixth during the summer break or during any college holiday. Students should not miss lessons to attend a work experience placement.

Universities and employers have been more flexible about their work experience requirements in recent years due to the number of companies who now work from home or whose work placement offer remains limited due to Covid.

Any students who’d like support with experiences of the workplace can speak to the Careers Department.

Can you help my child to find an apprenticeship?

Yes. All students receive information and guidance regarding apprenticeships as part of their tutorial programme. Anyone who wishes to progress into an apprenticeship or employment after completing their studies at college is provided with targeted support during upper sixth (and beforehand if they visit the Careers Department).

This support includes an introductory workshop on alternatives to higher education, one-to-one careers appointments, the annual college Careers Fair, and further workshops covering CV writing, searching for jobs, finding and applying for apprenticeships, and taking a gap year. In addition, regular job bulletins will be emailed to upper sixth students promoting apprenticeship/employment vacancies and upcoming events/webinars.

We keep in touch with these students over the summer term and after results day to check how they are getting on and offer further support as needed.

How much do the results from the upcoming mocks influence predicted grades?

Mock grades will contribute but not entirely. UCAS predicted grades are based on a balanced view of a student's performance across all assessments given, combined with knowledge of their minimum target grade (a performance indicator from GCSE results) and teachers view of potential for growth within the subject based on factors like Attitude to Learning. 

What if my child wants to take a gap year? Does Notre Dame support students applying for university during the year after their A-levels?

Anyone taking a gap year can apply through UCAS as an ex-Notre Dame, which means that the college will support them with their application, write a reference for them, and provide feedback on their personal statement. Before they step down from upper sixth, students are asked to let the Careers Department know if they intend to take a gap year, so that appropriate guidance can be provided for them. Students take a gap year will need to start working on their UCAS application as soon as possible after A-level results day.

Do places still get given through clearing if a child does not get their grades?

There are always places available on some degree courses at some universities on A-level results day and usually for a few days afterwards. However, we can’t guarantee that a place will be available at the university / on the course that your child would prefer e.g. for medicine at a Russell Group university.

The Careers Department will be in college on A-level results day to support students, and will continue that support during the following days either in person or by phone or email.

If a university open day takes place during the week, would a student be given authorised leave to attend?

Absolutely yes, it is extremely valuable for students to attend open days. This would be supported by authorisation, providing evidence is shown to their Achievement Tutor prior to the day.

What support do you offer students who are unsure if they want to go to university and don’t know which career path they want to go down?

We would encourage these students to make an appointment with the Careers Department to explore their options.

By browsing our site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Find out about cookies here Accept & Close