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Welcome to Minsthorpe Community College, A Specialist Science College

Minsthorpe Community College

Join the Minsthorpe Way!

Minsthorpe Community College is going places. The College became an Academy in 2011 and was judged ‘Good’ by Ofsted in March 2014. Our mission is to seek to continually to improve the quality of education that we provide and this is all about helping teachers to give lessons that genuinely engage learners in the process of learning and developing skills and competencies that will enable them to succeed in the twenty first century workplace. Success for young people in this competitive world demands that they are able to learn, unlearn and relearn and we pride ourselves on teaching our students how to think for themselves. We want every young person here to have a ‘can do ‘attitude, an attitude that does not fear failure but that learns from it.

The College sits at the heart of the local community and welcomes people to the Sports and Fitness Centre, the Happy Days Crèche and the Training and Conference Centre. In addition the College is a nationally recognised quality provider of teacher training both as part of the Wakefield Learning Community and also as the hub school for the Minsthorpe Consortium and the Three Counties Alliance School-centred Initial Teacher Training (SCITT). We are proud to be helping to develop the teachers of tomorrow

Always believe that you can achieve

This is the student motto and it was created by the students themselves. At Minsthorpe we believe that intelligence is learnable. It is expandable-not fixed- and achievement is the product of hard work. The key to expandable intelligence lies far more in the self-belief of students than it does in any ideas about innate ability. At Minsthorpe we stress that putting the effort into learning is a win-win situation- students’ make real progress and strengthen their intelligence as a result.

Travelling- The Minsthorpe Way

You can deliver a curriculum but you cannot deliver values- you can only do this by living them and staff and students are guided by a set of core values: Believe; Achieve; Succeed; Enjoy; Support. These are called The Minsthorpe Way and every student who successfully travels this road with us will know that, in doing so, that they have covered all the bases. All adults (teachers, support staff, governors, and parents) work in partnership and expect our students to strive for excellence. Target grades are aspirational- meeting them is a given; exceeding them the aim. For us education is a joint enterprise. We are all in this together- we all celebrate Minsthorpe’s achievements and we are all responsible for its failures: everybody matters, everybody succeeds, and everybody helps. By involving everyone in ensuring that all are enabled to achieve, the college creates communities which share in the success of all when the highest of aspirational targets are set and met. We recognise the truth behind the African perception that "if you want to walk fast, walk alone; but if you want to walk far then walk together" and value the contributions of everybody in the college in achieving our goals.

Minsthorpe Community College's mission is to change for the better the lives and life chances of all members of our community. In order to achieve this we are committed to the achievement of rapid educational transformation within the college through the development of outstanding practice based upon sustainable collaboration. Minsthorpe Community College aims to be a college in which all children are enabled to reach their potential through the provision of high quality education within a caring and supportive environment. Guided by the principle of ‘learning without limits’ students are responsible for their own learning and strive to achieve at the highest level in an environment that allows the values of the ‘Minsthorpe Way’ to flourish.

Careers Education Information and Guidance

Good careers education is vital and at Minsthorpe Community College it is woven into everything that we do. Done well it assists students to make decisions at important transition points and supports them during their key moments of choice, from primary to secondary school and from school to further education, higher education or work. It also aims to develop the career management competencies that will equip students to manage their career pathways and opportunities throughout their lives. At Minsthorpe we use CEIAG to develop more than just an awareness of the world of work- we also use it to help our young people become work-ready and to develop their character. At the College we have embedded the Gatsby Benchmarks into our careers strategy and aim to ensure that our students have as many encounters with people from the world of work as we can. For us careers education is not separate to our core business nor is it a bolt-on to it- it is our core business and we have found that students who have a clear idea of where they are going apply themselves much harder in lessons. A key function of secondary schools is to prepare students to transition successfully toward a future career path. This involves providing curriculum opportunities to build students’ general capabilities, support students’ interests and aspirations, and support them to make informed decisions about their subject choices and pathways. For us good careers education makes for a better education. Students are much more engaged and highly motivated about their future when they have a clear understanding of themselves and how they might live and work when they leave school. Not only are students more motivated here, they have better relationships with staff as well because we show an interest in them as people, not as statistics. Careers are now increasingly seen not as being chosen but as being constructed through the series of choices about learning and work that people make throughout their lives and, at Minsthorpe, our role is to help our young people construct their choices from an informed perspective.

Ray Henshaw


About us

We are a popular and successful College which is rapidly expanding.   Students enrol on an extensive range of both academic and vocational courses.  

Our Beauty Therapy courses are taught in a brand new dedicated Beauty Salon to which all students have access for beauty treatments.

Our success is based on the belief that students deserve the best in terms of teaching facilities, extra-curricular activities and individual support. 

At Minsthorpe students benefit from high standards of teaching, effective tutorial support and excellent advice/guidance.

We offer an extensive enrichment programme where students will be able to develop their skills and interests through a wide range of activities including sport, volunteering and work experience.  This learning experience will help prepare our students successfully to pursue their further opportunities in education/employment.

Students will also have a weekly General Studies lesson which will support them in developing their personal and economic well-being as they mature into young adults and help develop academic and essay writing skills. 


We are rightly proud of our Post 16 provision, and how we continue to grow in this area. 2013 saw our best results at at A Level. Particularly impressive was the measure of how many qualifications students achieve.  For the first time this has surpassed national figures by some way and has risen from 524 to 809 over the last three years. BTEC Diploma results are amongst the top 10% nationally.

We continue to add to our curriculum by increasing the number of courses we can offer, and adding to and improving our facilities. Our Level 3 Beauty course is taught at our new third site – WSETEC. The launch of our collaborative courses, Construction and Hairdressing have also been an exciting development over at WSETEC which boasts state of the art facilities.


We firmly believe that all students deserve one to one quality advice about progression onto Post 16 courses, and to that end put in a comprehensive package of Taster Sessions in Post 16 lessons when students are in Year 11. Each student is interviewed by specialist Post 16 staff following this and in the summer, students attend a Post 16 Induction Day.  However, we also believe that our students are life long learners. More than 90% of our students when leaving Year 11 progress into further education and training. At the end of Post 16 more than 60% stay in education and this figure is rising with applications to University significantly higher year on year.


Our Post 16 provision boasts an excellent mix of academic and vocational courses from subjects studied lower down the college to new subjects such as Psychology, Sociology, Economics, Forensic Science, Photography and Health and Social Care. The vocational route offers Level 3 BTEC Diplomas in Child Care and Learning Development, Sports Development and Coaching, and Beauty.

Our vocational courses at Level 1, 2 and Level 3 boast a 100% pass rate, with the results in the top 10% nationally, and with a range of progression routes offered. We also run courses at all levels collaboratively with Hemsworth Arts and Community College as part of our Wakefield South East Learning Community; the curriculum here offers courses such as Level 1 Transition, Level 2 and Level 3. Students achieve very good pass rates at AS and A2 level with records being broken year on year and increasing numbers of students progressing to university.


We offer a Tutorial and Enrichment Programme each week which is a compulsory part of the students’ curriculum. This year the Post 16 Enrichment programme has allowed students to engage in activities such as sports, finance, ICT, dance, work experience and volunteering to name but a few. We also run the AQA Extended Project, an examined course which allows students to expand their knowledge of a specific subject developing their research skills by focussing on a specific area of interest. These activities together with their Tutorial Period leads to the ASDAN CoPE Level 3 qualification which is equal to an AS Level.

Engagement in the wider Curriculum is an important part of the Curriculum and we take great pride in the work we do on our ACE days and in the fundraising activities that students have taken part, and continue to take part in.


In Post 16 at Minsthorpe Community College the Curriculum offer ensures all students are fully prepared for the working world and in Year 13 they are all encouraged to make university applications. These are made through UCAS, and a lesson is timetabled each week to help students complete applications, gain interview techniques and support with how to apply for Student Finance. We also work closely with students not pursuing university and support them with CVs and job applications as well as working closely with our own Post 16 Careers Education and Guidance staff and MAP services in college. Being offered a place in Post 16 at Minsthorpe Community College means that students are assured that they will study in an environment where ‘no child is left behind’. We are an inclusive Post 16 establishment and support students to pursue all manner of courses and experiences. We have an extensive support network in Post 16 and choosing to stay on here means knowing you will receive the highest standards of support both inside and outside the classroom.


Facilities available

We are lucky to have a purpose built Post 16 Centre located between the Science Block and the Sports and Fitness Centre. This is a two storey building which houses the learning centre equipped with computers solely for Post 16 use, social area, incorporating a Post 16 Café, and administrative functions for Post 16 students. Students are taught in specialist areas relevant to their course of study.


  • Dedicated Post 16 block
  • Self-contained Café
  • Self-contained Study Area with computers, printers and Photocopying facilities
  • Access to new and refurbished subject areas.
  • A purpose built Cadet Centre for the BTEC Public Services Courses.
  • Free access to excellent new Sports Facilities.
  • Access to the new Open Access Learning Centre for individual resources and study.
  • Access to Post 16 only networked PCs to assist study and research.
  • New Beauty Suite.
  • Training and Conference Centre.
  • First rate Childcare facilities on site.

Additional support

We have recently expanded our structure and have put in place a huge amount of staff support at Post 16. The Assistant Principal and Director of Post 16 Education and Training oversee the Post 16. In addition there are two Cross Curriculum Team Leaders who take responsibility for Years 12 and 13 respectively and an Assistant Cross Curriculum Team Leader. We also have a Support For Achievement Mentor who also advises on Post 16 Careers and Education, and access to MAP (Minsthorpe Access Point). Every student will have an individual mentor whose role it is to guide you through your Post 16 course(s).  They will provide personal, emotional and social support, monitor your attendance and follow up any unexplained absences, deliver the tutorial programme and discuss targets with you on a regular basis.  We will use a system of registration for students which is compatible with the philosophy of a Post 16 Centre that operates within a Community College. 

You will see your mentor at least three times a week.  This will involve monitoring performance and attendance as well as supporting you personally and emotionally.  Your mentor will also monitor your attendance closely and act as a communication channel between college, students and parents.  They will also write university and employment references for you. 

Staff will be available in college when the GCSE results are published in August.

Ask yourself:-What career do you have in mind? Can you plan to improve your qualifications so that you can achieve your chosen career? What alternatives to your career choice do you have in mind? What subjects do you need to study and to what level? 

Entry onto Level 3 courses requires 5 A - C GCSE grades or more.  We will look closely at your GCSE and other Key Stage 4 achievements and in discussion with students, help you choose the most appropriate course at the correct level of study. 

Advanced Level Post-16 students are given the opportunity to: Investigate Colleges and Universities. Attend Open Days. Listen to visiting speakers. Discuss career requirements and opportunities. In Year 13, staff and students together carefully consider individual needs when identifying the most suitable University or College. As a result, Minsthorpe has a highly successful record of placing students at Universities and colleges of Further and Higher Education.

The Careers Guidance and Action Planning which students experience in Year 11 continues in Post-16.For each individual, this consists of: Support and guidance from your mentor, subject teachers, the Director of Post 16 and other key staff. Interviews, when appropriate, with our Guidance Adviser .Use of the College`s Careers Library, which has an extensive range of books and computer software.

Learner success

Students continue to thrive at Minsthorpe and 2012/13 saw our largest cohort of students progressing to university.  Well over half of students in Year 13 have been successful in securing places at university.  Our Vocational results continue to thrive, and every year, successes in BTEC exams are in the top 10% of the country.  In academic exams, students continue to thrive, with 2013 seeing our highest ever points per candidate at A Level (the number and grades of qualifications) at over 809.  This is well above the national average.  With the addition of General Studies, and ASDAN CoPE to our programme of courses, students are coming out with more qualifications, and better prepared for the world of work, or university.  Our projections continue to rise and we expect to continue see this upward trend in results.

How to apply

You can apply for courses at Minsthorpe Community College, A Specialist Science College through UCAS Progress. Add courses to your favourites to apply to this provider.

Last updated date: 21 November 2017
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Key information


  • A: Minsthorpe Community College
    • Address:
    • Minsthorpe Community College
    • Minsthorpe Lane
    • South Elmsall
    • Pontefract
    • WF9 2UJ
    • Telephone number:
    • Home: 01977657600
    • Website:
    • Email address:
    • More information:
    • Minsthorpe Community College is a large successful 11-18 college committed to lifelong learning for all its students and community, within a supportive and friendly environment.  We hope that this information will help you make important decisions about your future and that we can offer you the right course for you. The number of Post 16 Students studying at Minsthorpe has risen impressively over recent years, with between 280-300 enrolling on courses between Year 12 and 13 every year.  We believe that at Minsthorpe we can offer a first rate Post 16 education, which will lead students to achievements and qualifications. 

      As part of the Wakefield South East Learning Community (WSELC), Minsthorpe is committed to enhancing the opportunities for all learners in the south east of the district and to that extent, have strong links with Hemsworth Arts and Community College, with whom we offer joint courses.  We have also recently expanded our provision to include courses delivered at our brand new Wakefield South East Training and Enterprise Centre.  This is a new building including state of the art facilities in Beauty and Construction to name but two. 

      We have a wide range of academic and vocational courses on offer all with good success rates.  Students enrol on either a two year 'level 3' programme or a one year level 1 or 2 programmes.  Many of our level 2 students then re-enrol on a level 3 programme.  At level 3, we offer AS/A2 levels, BTEC Diplomas (equivalent to 1 or 3 'A' Levels) and NVQ's. At level 2, we offer BTEC First Diplomas, NVQ's, and GCSE resits in Maths and English. Some subjects will be familiar to students whilst others offer the opportunity to embark on a completely new field of study.  Familiar staff who have already guided and pushed students through GCSEs are the course leaders for Post 16 subjects.