Sixth Form Staff
In addition to a team of twelve Sixth Form tutors, we also have a Sixth Form leadership team of very well qualified staff who are attuned to the particular needs of Sixth Form students.
David Waters, Head of Sixth Form, Teacher of History and Politics
I joined St Columba’s College as Head of Sixth Form in 2020 as we moved towards a co-educational setting. I studied History at Liverpool University before taking a PGCE in History at Cambridge University. I taught for 16 years at St George’s Harpenden, rising to Assistant Headteacher in charge of Teaching & Learning and Curriculum. My subject specialism is History, and my experiences as a Senior leader, examiner and consultant have given me insight into a range of educational settings as well as a deep understanding of the challenges that A Level students face. In the Sixth Form at St Columba’s, we see ourselves as a College within a College. We provide strong pastoral support and give the students a range of leadership opportunities they can grow into. I look forward to helping to nurture and develop the students’ academic potential and provide them with an enriching and fulfilling time with us, as they contribute to the wider Sixth Form and College life.
Chris Sheils, Deputy Head of Sixth Form, Teacher of History and Politics
I joined St Columba’s College as a teacher of History and Politics in 2016, having previously been a student here myself. Prior to being appointed Deputy Head of Sixth Form in 2019, I was Deputy Head of Charles House. I completed my BA and MA degrees at Queen’s University Belfast, and worked in politics in Northern Ireland for a time before completing my PGCE at the Institute of Education in London. Throughout my time at SCC I’ve been involved in many aspects of the programme on offer for the Sixth Form, including work experience, support with UCAS applications, social events and supervising EPQ projects. My main role is helping students to make the transition from GCSE to A Level and providing them with a wide range of enrichment opportunities whilst preparing them for university and life beyond the College.
Rachel Hambly, Deputy Head of Sixth Form, Teacher of Latin
I have been a Latin teacher at St Columba’s since 2020, starting my career here as a Sixth Form tutor for McClancy House, before being appointed to Deputy Head of Sixth Form.
I obtained my Undergraduate degree in Classics at the University of Cambridge, staying there for a PGCE (in Latin and Classics) and a Master’s in Education. I am also an examiner for OCR and teach at a Latin Summer School over the school holidays. I deploy my academic background to assist with Stretch and Challenge within the Sixth Form and with preparation for applications to prestigious universities.
As a Deputy Head of Sixth Form, I primarily oversee the induction process for new 16+ students and look after their well-being as they transition into the Columban education system. The Sixth Form is an extremely vibrant place to work in and it is a true honour to support our students as
they prepare for the next exciting steps in their lives.
Maria Adair, Stretch and Challenge Coordinator, Teacher of Religious Studies
I took my undergraduate degree at Fitzwilliam College Cambridge, and have worked at St Columba’s College for 11 years. As Stretch and Challenge coordinator for Key Stage 5 my role involves working with Scholars to ensure they are doing their best; helping to prepare those applying for competitive courses especially the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge and generally ensuring that students are challenged and have enough support to succeed.
I like to encourage students to read as widely as they can, to develop critical thinking skills and also to lead sessions to challenge pupils lower down the school.
I am also a Joseph Sixth Form tutor, and consequently I am involved in the exciting process of university applications; from reference writing to helping with Personal Statements.
Our Sixth Form is a fantastic place to be and it is a privilege working alongside students who are learning to think more independently and, in so doing, are role models to younger students.
Michael Wright, Head of Careers and Higher Education
I was educated in Careers at the University of Cambridge, where I completed a Masters in Leading and Managing Careers Education in 2010.
My journey in education began working with Gifted & Talented students at an award-winning state school in Bedfordshire. After focusing on, and training in Careers Education I went on to specialise in building school careers programmes. I later became the Head of Student Satisfaction at a large college in Hertfordshire before moving into independent education.
In 2017, I moved to Harrow School, an historic independent boarding school in London. There I developed a new cross-school careers programme, and I also became an expert in supporting students to successfully apply to the most prestigious universities in the UK and the USA.
I joined St Columba’s College in early 2022, and I am keen to use my experience and specialised skills to help the college improve its already strong careers provision. Student will have access to a range of engaging careers activities as well as bespoke one -to -one advice to help them navigate through important educational and career choices.
Juliet Foxwell, Sixth Form & Music Co-ordinator
As Sixth Form Coordinator my role involves supervising the students in their private study and administrating for the department, but also, and perhaps more importantly, gives the Sixth Form students a team member who is based in their study hall full-time, to whom they can turn with any question.
New to St Columbas this term myself, I have a wealth of experience in the retail industry, both working for large corporations and running my own business and hope to help the students in their transition to self-sufficiency as they proceed through their studies. I am here to support students new to the school, or new to sixth form life, adjust to the freedoms and pressures of their curriculum, also helping students who struggle to focus in the less-structured private study time to reach their full potential.
My role here is one of reassurance and support, both emotionally and organisationally, at this key stage in their learning journeys.
Lucy Cronin, Assistant Head: Director of Studies. Teacher of Religious Studies & Philosophy
I have worked at St Columba’s College for 16 years and was formally Head of RE and then Assistant Headteacher in charge of Teaching and Learning. I completed my degree in Theology and Religious Studies at Cambridge University.
I maintain a keen interest in the fields of theology, world religion, philosophy and social ethics. Throughout my years at St Columba’s College, I have greatly enjoyed teaching A Level and seeing students grow in their ability to think critically and to challenge injustice but also to develop their spiritual life. I feel excited to be part of this strong community where gospel values, such as humility, solidarity, justice and integrity are able to be lived out.
As Director of Studies, my role is to help guide students during the process of choosing A Level subjects and to put together the option blocks following the initial A Level choices. I have oversight both of the timetable and of assessment and reporting; in this context I am always happy to talk through any issues relating to revision, wider reading or independent learning to help everyone maximise their potential and improve their grades.