I was just wondering if anyone had come across this problem? I work in an independent school - 11 - 18 intake. However, we seem to have difficulty recruiting sixth form from amongst our own pupils. I am not sure why. ( we do get others come in from other schools but I fear not enough) a) we have good facilities - better than most other schools and colleges locally. b) we get better results comparatively ( bearing in mind we lose our best pupils to other places - and not to one place in particular or to state schools or colleges. c) we offer as good a range of subjects as any college with something to suit all abilities and some more unusual but popular subjects like psychology,media, business etc - although many will go and take these subjects at other schools ( which annoys me no end as I recruit students very well - and even amongst those staying with us, I have some of the largest classes but many still end up going elsewhere and doing far worse than they would have with me ). d) we have a lovely new sixth form centre and new study block which rivals the best FE and colleges. We are not regimented in sixth form , so it isnt because the kids cannot feel " grown up" or have additional responsibilities. When asked the pupils come along with all sorts of excuses for leaving, none of which fit the facts they say they want more freedom, better facilities, to chose their clothes, etc. I can accept a few might want to go elsewhere but not nearly all of them...... which is what seems to be happening. Someone did say to me that they would not bring their child into sixth form because we do not retain enough of our brightest and best. I can see the problem but I cannot understand why. We start recruiting them early - even with an ethos of the school being "all through" and up until they reach year 11 all seems to go swimmingly...... even early recruitment evenings for sixth form and taster days etc. but then suddenly around Christmas ( when they have to give notice if they plan on leaving) a lot decide to go ( even though they are going to worse schools, know that previous years have done badly that way etc. and even know lots leave other schools once they get there. In a nutshell. They go elsewhere to do what they can do so very well with us and get better results with us - why? ( and we are an excellent school according to inspections) Now, I am not in charge in anyway. I just teach but I have an incling that our Head of Sixth might leave. I thought I might look at the opportunity to apply should it arise. We have a new Head and he is mad keen on Sixth form recruitment. No doubt he will ask the above question. Has anyone had an issue like this and resolved it? PS - just a coincidence maybe, it seems we lose kids after the " Careers Advisor" has been in - is that just coincidence? I do not want to give too many details - that's as much as I am willing to disclose really.