Politics is a dynamic subject that tends to appeal to students with inquiring, critical minds, seeking to study a new and challenging subject in the Sixth Form.
At Kimbolton our emphasis is on developing the critical and analytical skills of students, encouraging lively class discussion as well as focusing on the core demands of reading, researching and writing answers to essay questions. We are committed to making the study of politics an enjoyable, rewarding and successful experience.
Lower and Upper Sixth Form – A Level optional subject
We follow the Edexcel Government and Politics syllabus, which includes three examinations:
- UK Politics (33 1/3 %)
- UK Government (33 1/3 %)
- Comparative Politics: Study of USA Politics and Comparative USA/UK Politics (33 1/3 %)
The course covers the political systems of the United Kingdom and United States of America. We will also be studying Political Ideas and Comparative Politics. Students are encouraged to think independently, critically assessing both the workings of the key political institutions and debating contemporary political issues. To do this well requires an interest in, and commitment to, reading books, periodicals such as the Economist and broadsheet newspapers, follow political apps as well as watching quality political and current affairs programmes on television. They are supported through our extensive iTunes course.
Kimbolton 7th Period Super Curriculum: This initiative allows the department to enrich our students with academic extension activities. We have developed a course to develop presentational and technological skills, and to include work on a new Politics vLog to be broadcast in the school and eZine articles.
- Our active Politics Society (see programme below) is open to all year groups. Each term there is a programme of meetings, many student-led. Recent topics for discussion have included the works of Nietzsche and Plato, the ethics of war and the death penalty, while visiting speakers have included Sir John Major KG CH, broadcaster and journalist Mr Jeremy Paxman, Lord Butler of Brockwell (the former Cabinet Secretary to Thatcher, Major and Blair), from political news Matthew Parris, Michael Crick, Michael Cockerell and Sally Lockwood, as well as Mary Coughlan (former Deputy Premier of ROI).
- Many of our Politics students choose to participate in our debating activities, including competitions such as the Model United Nations.
- We contribute an Introduction to Philosophy course to the School’s Junior Scholars Programme.
- We organise mock General Elections, and most recently a mock Referendum on EU membership, with talks in the School Assembly, and in which pupils from all year groups have the opportunity to stand as candidates, campaign and - of course - vote.
- We also organise annual Mock Law Cases, as well as an annual trip to Parliament.
- For some lucky students, participation in the Kimbolton American exchange allows them to visit Washington DC and to see Congress, the White House and the Supreme Court at first hand.
Regular Trips, Visitors and Competitions
- Each year we take our Lower Sixth students to Westminster for a tour of Parliament and activities organised by the Parliamentary Education Unit.
- We aim to offer our Upper Sixth students the opportunity to attend lectures on aspects of US politics given by eminent academics.
- Students also have the opportunity to link in with the school’s American Exchange Programme.