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About the College

West Suffolk College is on a mission to be the best college in the UK – we believe our community deserves nothing less.

We’re making history at West Suffolk College in a place famous for it. On a stunning campus in the heart of historic Bury St Edmunds, we’re advancing ambitious plans to become a leading vocational and academic college, serving our students outstandingly, and supporting the success of businesses and the regional economy.

We provide an outstanding education to every one of our students. Our ethos is to put our learners’ success at the heart of everything we do. That means we do everything we can to help our students succeed and be the best they can be.

We have an impressive range of courses, high quality facilities, inspiring tutors and incredible opportunities to open up a career or succeed in higher education. We believe in engaging with our students as young adults in a supportive and encouraging environment and we aim to give the best opportunity to develop, grow and become passionately involved in their own education.

As a partner College of the University of Suffolk, we offer more than 40 foundation and honours degrees at the College across a wide range of subjects. We also have strong links with business and industries in the region to make sure our students develop skills that will increase their employability.

We are a large local employer with 786 staff and a turnover of £28 million.

  • Success Rates
    • 84.2% success rate for all ages on long and short qualifications
    • 86% success rate for 16-18 long qualifications
    • 80.8% success rate for 19+ long qualifications
    • 78% success rate for Full Apprenticeship Framework
    • 88.7% success rate for Full NVQ2 and 3 delivered in the workplace
    • 87.7% success rate for Higher Education students

Abbeygate Sixth Form College

abbeygate sixth form college external front

Abbeygate Sixth Form College will open in September 2019; the pupils will initially be accommodated at Suffolk House until the building work is complete.

The new sixth form will be situated by King Edwards VI School – opposite the County and Borough council offices and us, and is now expected to open in spring 2020.

David Gartland, Principal, said: “I am excited that Abbeygate Sixth Form College will be opening in September 2019. Our A-Level provision will complement the outstanding post-16 education already being offered by our partners West Suffolk College and One Sixth Form College in Ipswich as part of the Eastern College Group. The opening of the new building will be a landmark moment in post-16 education for West Suffolk”.

The College will offer 30 different A-level subjects in Art, Biology, Business Studies, Chemistry, Classical Civilisation, Computer Science, Criminology, Dance, Drama and Theatre Studies, Economics, English Language, English Literature, Film Studies, French, Further Maths, Geography, German, Government and Politics, History, Law, Maths, Media, Music, Music Technology, PE, Philosophy and Ethics, Photography, Physics, Psychology, Sociology, Spanish and Textiles.

All current year 12 students at King Edward VI School will automatically transfer to Abbeygate to complete their second year of A Levels.

Abbeygate Sixth Form will have a presence at the College’s open events and will be holding their own open event in January 2019. The application system is now open and prospective interviews will take place from November 2018 through to May 2019. Staff recruitment is expected to begin early 2019.

Abbeygate Sixth Form College is an exciting new addition to our educational offer, attracting a new customer base and this will strengthen our position in the education landscape. Prospective students are being invited to apply for courses both at Abbeygate and West Suffolk College if they so desire; this way ensuring there are options available for them to make the decision that will be most beneficial to their educational journey.

The Trust is working in collaboration with Abbeygate's four founder schools on all aspects of the project: King Edwards V1, Stour Valley Academy, Sybil Andrews Academy and Newmarket Academy.

Find out more at www.abbeygatesfc.ac.uk or see a fly through of the new building here.