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Key Stage 4 Curriculum

The Key Stage 4 curriculum is a carefully planned, broad and balanced curriculum that offers students the opportunity to develop the skills, knowledge and experiences required to secure the right range and quality of qualifications and personal aptitudes to prepare them for their next stage of learning. The curriculum provides guidance for students and, a range of option choices, to enable them to develop as confidence, qualified learners able to access future college courses or apprenticeships on their journey towards adulthood and the world of work.

We review our curriculum regularly and are currently developing our 'Curriculum Statement 2020' to ensure all students benefit from the best possible academic and personal learning opportunities. Our staff pride themselves on seeking new ideas and use of the latest technologies to engage every student so they enjoy coming to school to learn whilst developing into confident, well-rounded young adults. We will pilot Construction in 2019/20 as part of our drive to bring increased cultural capital and everyday relevance to our broad curriculum offer.

Students begin their GCSE courses in June of Year 9 when the timetable is moved forward and they begin their GCSE learning. Throughout Key Stage 3 students have been supported to develop within the core curriculum as well as individual specialisms and areas of personal aptitude. The Key Stage 4 curriculum is the start of the next stage of their learning journey during which we recognise and encourage their increased focus on future career choices and personal ambition. To this end we offer additional opportunities and experiences including: work experience; educational visits to challenge thinking and broaden horizons; and student leadership responsibilities.

The subjects offered at Key Stage 4 are:

Core Subjects:

  • English Language and Literature
  • Mathematics

English Baccalaureate Subjects:

  • Science (Three separate sciences of biology, chemistry and physics, or combined science)
  • Modern Foreign Language
  • History
  • Geography
  • Computing

Other GCSEs (reviewed each year):

  • Art 
  • Business Studies
  • Dance (being piloted in 2019/20)
  • Design and Technology (main specialism plus additional specialisms)
  • Drama
  • Media Studies
  • Music
  • Sports Studies

High Value Vocational Subjects (reviewed each year):

  • Health and Social Care
  • Construction (being piloted 2019/20)

All students belong to a Form Group. The Form Group is led by a Form Tutor who, typically, will know them well as they will have worked with them during Key Stage 3. Groups meet daily with their Tutor and there is a year group specific programme of learning, including weekly opportunity for a Year Group assembly.

Each Year Group continues to be led by their Achievement Coordinator (AC) and a Deputy Achievement Coordinator (DAC).

All students can access the library at break, lunch or after school. Where students need further support for literacy or numeracy, they continue to use the Accelerated Reader Programme and to access Learning Support Team provision.

The Careers Advisors are available to all students during designated Social Studies lessons, career specific 'spotlight' sessions, parents' evenings and specific appointments. Students in Year 11 participate in a week of work experience during the autumn term.

Students have access to a wide variety of extra-curricular clubs and they can use the Wellbeing Centre through drop-in sessions or scheduled appointments.

A small number of students may struggle to meet the demands of the Key Stage 4 curriculum and are offered a bespoke alternative provision for Year 11 where they can be supported with their various needs. They are taught through a personalised curriculum based on programmes such as:

  • Core subjects: GCSE English Language and Literature and Mathematics
  • ICT qualifications
  • Duke of Edinburgh Award
  • Vocational subjects (pilots in 2019/20)
  • Social Studies curriculum.
  • Work experience (up to 2 days per week)

An overview of the Key Stage 4 curriculum can be downloaded here.