15 August 2023

Our Student Reflections

student photo

Prior to A Level results on Thursday, we were able to sit down with four of our departing Year 13 students, who took the time to reflect on their four years at Ealing Independent College.

In this article, we get their responses to wide-ranging questions, with more to follow tomorrow. For our A-Level page Click here.

Each of them is about to embark on a hugely significant period of transition to university, independence and adulthood, and each of them wanted to express their gratitude for the beneficial effects of the educational experiences which they have learned from at the College.

Here, Theo (T), Ludwik (L), Hasan (H) and Yaseen (Y) explain how they feel about the College, and its effects on their educational journeys.


Describe your educational experiences before you came to EIC. Can you explain your attitude to learning there?

Y: “Before joining EIC, my educational experiences were quite positive. I attended a previous school that was also very good and supportive. However, my move to EIC for A-level education marked a significant transition. The guidance I received from my teachers at EIC has especially been instrumental in shaping my approach to learning.”

L: “Although I was progressing quite well I did not feel that I was achieving my true potential, and started to consider my options. I searched for suitable opportunities, and I came across Ealing Independent College. I was impressed by the presentation and the conversation we had about the college and my future. I decided that the small classes and personalised attention would be of great benefit to me.”

H: “I had previously attended a much larger school. For the preliminary years of my education, the school served its purpose however the standard of education in the later years was not up to par. This issue was an important consideration for my family in regards to my future which led to them making the decision of enrolling me at Ealing Independent College. I would say for the majority of my academic tenure I would have been moderately educationally disciplined however nearing the end of my time at my previous school I had become lax.

T: “Simply put, bad. I changed primary school twice because I hated it. I then joined my secondary school where I had around 30% attendance, or worse, during my last year and got detentions almost everyday. I left that school in year 8 and finished the year at an online school, after looking at and trying countless other schools, which was alright but not sustainable. I wouldn’t describe myself as lazy but rather unmotivated and unbothered, I didn’t see the point in education.”


How did life at Ealing Independent College differ from what you had previously experienced?

T: “Straight away I felt an immediate change, the teachers seemed to care and everyone was much closer like a community, the standard of teaching was much higher and more attention was given to each individual. However, it did take me time to get used to and to begin with I would mess around a bit but with time I became a better student and appreciated the school more, wanting to do well academically.”

Y: “Life at Ealing Independent College was notably different from my previous experiences. The level of support and guidance I received was exceptional. EIC's personalised approach to education truly sets the college apart.” 

L: “Having been in the state system from infants upwards, with large classes and pupils who potentially were not there to learn, EIC was so different. I was treated like an adult. All of the staff were extremely friendly and helpful. The classes were smaller allowing me to interact more effectively with the teachers and the other students. I was given more opportunities to develop my learning style and knowledge. This also allowed me to mature as a person.

H: “Though the boundaries were sterner the overall atmosphere was very relaxed. It allowed me to transition easily to the environment aided by the accommodating dress code and friendly way in which teachers and students converse (first name usage, out-of-topic conversations in spare time, etc).”


Explain how lockdown and online learning changed your approach. Did the way EIC supported you through this period help in any way in particular?

H: “Lockdown education was quite difficult. It changed the way in which we learned during a crucial part of secondary educational development. This was an issue as it could have jeopardised our futures as well as introducing us into an environment where many were not fit to study nor focus on education (studying at home led to differing disciplines and outlooks on our education.) I found it really hard, but appreciated the support.

L: “Obviously the pandemic had a massive effect on everyone. Not only at home but also with the way we were taught. The advent of online schooling, which tried to bring in an order of continuity was at times very difficult . Not being in the same room with your colleagues and the teacher with remote teaching was somewhat daunting initially, as I did not know when to raise questions which in the past could be just an aside to the student next to you, would now be broadcast for everyone to hear. Gradually, I became more used to this way of teaching but missed out on the company of my colleagues.”

Y: “The lockdown period and the shift to online learning presented considerable challenges. It was a stressful time that impacted my academic life. However, the support of EIC's teachers was instrumental in helping me navigate these challenges. Their commitment to ensuring effective online learning and offering additional assistance when needed greatly alleviated the difficulties I faced during that time.”

T: “Lockdown was a unique time. To begin with I saw this as a time to slack off and take school less seriously. I definitely put in much less effort, however I did eventually realise that it was on me, I then started trying harder which paid off. The college was very helpful, we got extra lessons and the small classes made it easier to focus, as larger lessons online would tend to be a mess to control.”


Explain how the staff at Ealing helped you through the UCAS process.

T: “There were many UCAS workshops that went on which helped me understand all my options. I was lucky as my mum used to work in a university so I had all the information needed, however my teachers were very helpful when writing my personal statement. I also had a very stressful and difficult time getting five rejections, however the teachers were very supportive and gave me useful advice.”

Y: “The staff at Ealing Independent College, including the invaluable guidance of teachers and staff like Laura, the Vice Principal, played a crucial role in guiding me through the UCAS process. Laura's exceptional support has been particularly valuable, as she provided assistance with my UCAS application by offering feedback on my personal statement and helping me with interview practice. Her guidance, along with the collective support from EIC, greatly contributed to my success in the application process.”

L: “My UCAS process was straightforward at Ealing Independent College each staff member helped. In year twelve, students had a UCAS week in which each teacher had a helping hand in what University is like, University options and how to complete the UCAS application. Within the college we had many tests and exams to provide information about all of us for UCAS to promote ourselves towards the different Universities. I went for a competitive course, Engineering and I want to specialise in Civil Engineering as it really interests me. During this time I had tried to decide realistic choices about each University, I chose 3 London Universities and 2 Universities in the north with grades similar to my predicted. When the 25th of January came around and my submitted options were sent towards each University, I received all my offers within a month and all of them were positive as they all accepted me. Now I had to decide where I would like to go.”

H: “What I would consider one of the strongest aspects of the school is the UCAS team, especially Laura Bellerby (Vice Principal). She did all in her power to assist me in my education as well as improve my position to help me in a new and tough experience. As well as taking out of her personal time to set up interviews and other things of that nature she allowed us to develop realistic expectations as well as develop a greater understanding of Uni life and the college experience.”


Be sure to look for the second instalment of reflections from our students tomorrow. They will be discussing their hopes for the future, their thoughts on what might have been had they not come to Ealing, and any special memories they will be taking with them from the College.

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