‘Made for Greatness’
Our curriculum intent is underpinned by our core ASPIRE values and a desire to ensure that every student knows they are ‘Made for Greatness’.
We aim to provide an inclusive curriculum that is ambitious and aspirational, enabling students to take full advantage of all opportunities within school and preparing them for the future. We are fully committed to embracing and celebrating diversity across our curriculum. We promote and develop the qualities of integrity, respect and excellence, empowering all students to be the best person they can be.
- To equip students with the knowledge, skills and understanding through dynamic, creative and innovative teaching and learning to enable them to participate actively and thrive in society;
- To support all students in achieving the academic qualifications needed to access all opportunities including further education, training or career pathways, irrespective of their backgrounds;
- To promote a love of learning and curiosity through a range of memorable experiences both within and outside of the curriculum;
- To instil the fundamental British values in students enabling them to be respectful and peaceful citizens with an understanding of democracy, liberty and freedom.
- To recognise the context of students’ needs and prior learning, so students feel safe, not only in their wellbeing but also in their learning environment.
The school ensures that the aims are mapped and that the cultural capital of those aims are evident in the curriculum.
Our curriculum builds upon students’ prior learning from Key Stage 2 into Key Stage 3 and subsequent Key Stages within the school. The curriculum sequentially builds on prior learning to encourage a progressive acquisition of knowledge which is embedded in students’ long-term memory allowing them to access the next stage of their learning. Students access their published learning journey, enabling them to deepen their understanding and articulate their learning and its purpose and significance.
Assessment for Learning
Assessment for learning underpins and is a strength of our curriculum. Regular assessment points allow students’ understanding to be checked and progress reviewed, with opportunity to reshape learning and close gaps in knowledge, skills and understanding.
Teachers regularly use formative assessment to check on students’ skills and/or knowledge with embedded processes addressing gaps identified.
Summative assessment of curricular end points is embedded termly and diagnostic analysis reshapes subsequent learning. Teaching and curriculum plans are adapted to address gaps, and students respond to personal actions to enable them to further develop their skills and/or knowledge.
Students and parents are fully supported in preparing for summative assessments through the use of revision booklets. The school website is used to share curriculum content with parents and students
Consistency in the delivery of the curriculum is enhanced through shared resources for mid-term plans, supporting teachers to adapt resources to reflect the specific needs of their individual classes to ensure there are no barriers to learning. Curriculum leaders and teachers plan to support all groups of learners with a priority on vulnerable and/or SEND learners.
Further curriculum information
Students with SEND follow an inclusive curriculum at Key Stage 3, 4 & 5 that students access through high quality teaching. Exceptions occur on advice from education, social and health care professionals regarding alternative pathways in the best interests of the student, for example if it is outlined in a students’ ECHP that amendments are recommended.
Students with SEND are supported to study a broad and balanced curriculum. Subject leaders ensure curriculum planning is inclusive by careful consideration of learning activities, teaching strategies and accessibility of resources when planning for all students. Teachers use student learning plans to ensure strategies are in place to support students’ individual special educational needs. Teachers can consult with the SENCO when they have concerns about individual students.
We recognise that a small minority of students on transitioning from primary school to secondary school, are not yet ready for the full Year 7 experience. As such, we have the Lighthouse Programme which supports students with the transition by providing small-group teaching for Core subjects, history and geography. Students are provided with bespoke and differentiated learning in a small setting with teaching staff until they are ready to access the mainstream provision. Schemes of work are in line with the rest of Year 7 to allow ease of transition at an appropriate time.
We recognise that some students require additional support with reading, particularly in Year 7 and Year 8. Students are given GL reading tests and those who are determined as being significantly below age-related expectations follow the Fresh Start phonics-based curriculum. This is delivered by trained staff in small groups, until students have made sufficient progress
Literacy, Reading and Oracy
Opportunities to develop reading, writing, speaking and listening skills are embedded into the curriculum over every Key Stage as we aim to promote a love of reading with our students.
We ensure that all students have reading age tests and we use reading ages to inform and support planning within lessons. We support the lowest 20% of readers through targeted reading intervention and monitor the impact and progress made.
Reading and oracy skills are promoted through our Pastoral programme. Students are given talking points and opportunities for regular discussion, in order to develop confidence and vocabulary. Dedicated silent reading time is used to promote the importance of reading at tutor time, as well the Reading Aloud programme. The programme is run by Post 16 students for Year 7 and Year 8 students who are not part of the Fresh Start or Lighthouse group but have been identified (through the reading tests) as students who require further support in developing their reading skills. Students participate in paired reading sessions each week with Year 9 and 10 students to develop their fluency and comprehension.
The acquisition of subject-specific vocabulary and command of its use, are central in enabling students to become proficient. As such, each subject curriculum plans for the active teaching of key vocabulary and word banks are provided for students to develop their understanding of key terminology.
We promote acceptance, increase visibility and encourage the celebration of success of people from diverse backgrounds in all curriculum areas.
The diversity of our curriculum has been mapped across every subject, with a focus on ensuring positive and visible representations of the groups that are protected under the Equalities Act 2010.
We operate a 2-week timetable – time allocated to subjects is based on provision across the 2 weeks.
Key Stage 3 (Year 7 – 9)
Students study the full range of National Curriculum subjects at KS3 giving students a broad and balanced curriculum allowing them to have a full experience of subjects before taking options during Year 9. Students also study drama which is beyond the National Curriculum.
Subjects include: English, Mathematics, Science, RE, PE, French, Spanish, Art, Music, History, Geography, Technology, Computer Science and drama.
The wider curriculum (i.e. PSHE, RSE, SMSC, fundamental British Values and careers education) is embedded into our subject curricular and pastoral programme.
Stage 4 (Year 10 – 11) *may need to change re: Triple science
All students study the Core Subjects – English, Mathematics, Science, Religious Education and PE (statutory). Students also study either history or geography. In addition, following guided discussion with teachers and parents during the Options process, students choose from a range of subjects which have equal value in the curriculum but also focus on life chances and allow for success and progression to further study either at P16 or alternative study.
Student can choose from: Art, French, Spanish, Drama, Computer Science, Food & Nutrition, Media Studies, GCSE PE, Business, Music, Timbers, Photography, BTEC Health & Social Care, BTEC Sport and BTEC Creative iMedia.
Key Stage 5 (Year 12-13)
The aim of our KS5 curriculum is to enable students to progress further with their education beyond GCSE and Level 2 and to provide pathways to a range of future destinations. We aim to equip them for their personal development with high quality academic and applied qualifications suitable to their abilities and future aspirations.
The curriculum model includes a number of separate subjects, some of which are new to students following GCSE, whilst other build on subjects that students may have followed since Key Stage 3. All students receive a bespoke advice and guidance interview to help them choose subjects as well as participating in ‘taster sessions’ during Year 11.
Students are able to select both A Levels and Applied General Qualifications depending on their intended pathway and their own academic suitability for the subjects. Within each subject, lessons are sequenced and link to and build upon, students’ prior learning and understanding at KS4.
Alongside the subject curriculum, all students in Year 12 and Year 13 study Core RE which encompasses RSE and aids their personal development. Students also access the P16 pastoral programme which includes mentoring sessions as well as PSHE and UCAS and careers support. Students are also able to opt in to other extra-curricular opportunities such as DofE and debating competitions. Whilst in school, students have timetabled independent study periods and access to a learning mentor to guide their progress.
In the exceptional circumstance that a student enrols on Post 16 courses without achieving a 4 in GCSE Mathematics or English Language they are provided with the opportunity to take these examinations to meet the standard pass.
Students in Key Stage 5 select 3 subjects of study from below, with 10 hours of study per subject.
English Language & Literature
Health & Social Care
Philosophy & Ethics