A Croydon secondary school has shut down its sixth-form level with immediate effect, blaming poor exam results.

St Andrew's Church of England High School in Waddon scrapped its A-level provision because said it said too few students had passed AS level papers to make it "viable to run". 

Shocked students were informed of the decision when they collected grades from the Warrington Road school on Thursday.

The school announced earlier this year that it would closing down its sixth form in summer 2016, but current Year 12 students were initially told they could continue and finish their A-levels.

Incoming headteacher Kerry Targett, who will replace the departing David Matthews for the beginning of the new school term, wrote to students about the chance of stance on Thursday.

She said: "It is with much regret... that I am writing to inform you that not enough students in your year passed and met our criteria for entry into year 13; of those who did there are not enough of you in any subject area to make groups viable to run.

"I have therefore had to make a really difficult decision, over the past 24 hours, to shut the sixth form completely.

"I know this is not an ideal situation for you to be in but I cannot continue to run with a sixth form that is not getting the best educational outcomes for its students and must therefore look at providing you with a stronger alternative provision, in another school."

The school's AS-level pass rate for the 2014/15 academic year was 71 per cent, an increase on the previous year. Half of papers were awarded grades A*-C.

Harriet Higgs, of Wallington, is among the students left in limbo by the announcement. She said: "They told us the sixth form was shutting and there wasn't going to be any new year 12s but they kind of told us that we were going to be safe and it wasn't going to affect us. Obviously it did.

"I feel a bit like, 'What do I do now?' I kind of don't want to continue with anything."

The 18-year-old, who suffers from anxiety, resat her AS levels this year to improve her grades after struggling to adjust to sixth form last year.

 Harriet's two 16-year-old brothers - who are both autistic - have also just finished Year 12 at St Andrew's. 

Their mother Susie said: "One of the reasons why they stayed there is for the security and because its what they're used to. They are just all in shock really and so are their friends.

"They are all really upset and has come as a total shock. I feel that the school has failed them and are failing on a duty of care."

St Andrew's said it hoped many of its sixth-form students would finish their A-levels at Archbishop Tenison's Church of England High School instead.

A statement posted on the St Andrew's website added other students "have been and will be directed to other sixth form providers in the borough".

No one from the school, which launched its sixth form two years ago, could be reached for comment today.

Croydon Council, which funds the school, has been contacted for a statement.

Have you been affected by the closure of St Andrew's High School's sixth form? Call the newsdesk on 0208 722 6351 or email chris.baynes@london.newsquest.co.uk