We follow the National Curriculum prioritising emotional wellbeing alongside academic achievements in order to meet the individual needs of our pupils. All pupils study Maths and English up to GCSE.
Staff across all sites work collaboratively to ensure that the curriculum end points are coherent. Also, the curriculum is strategically planned to scaffold the skills required to make successful progress.
At KS3 we focus on PSHEC and emotional well-being to ensure pupils are in a place where they are able to learn. We follow the National Curriculum in English, Maths, Science, PE, Food and Art. We have a strong emphasis on literacy, with some pupils following the Fresh Start Programme to develop their literacy skills to help them better access the curriculum, and all pupils completing weekly literacy sessions in spelling, handwriting and vocabulary. In Humanities we follow the ASDAN programme, covering History, Geography and RE. We also deliver an Outdoor Education Programme which links with areas of PE, alongside supporting the pupils in team work, co-operation and building their own confidence and self-esteem.
At KS4 we offer a breadth of subjects to enthuse and prepare our young people for the wider world. Priority is given to Maths, English and Science; these subjects provide pupils with the necessary building blocks to enable the successful study of the other subjects we offer. Our curriculum develops the skills imperative to our pupils’ ability to cope in the wider world and their ability to sustain employment. Food, ICT, Art and PE are all taught by subject specialists and pupils have access to high specification on-site facilities in which they are able to learn how to apply theoretical knowledge to the practical elements of the curriculum.
We deliver a predominantly knowledge-engaged curriculum in which pupils are encouraged to develop a growth mind-set to become the best versions of themselves by believing in their capacity to learn. This is promoted and facilitated through daily mindfulness sessions in their form group and through the study of PHSCE.
Also, if they are following the Personalised Education Team programme, they will follow a bespoke curriculum path. PET programme pupils’ study includes access to vocational courses which provide accreditations and experience relevant to their Post 16 career choices.
Our ambition for all pupils, is to be given opportunities that will offer them the best understanding of how to be successful in 21st Century Britain. Poor communication skills are closely linked with social disadvantage, consequently reading is a whole school priority; all pupils who have not achieved expected levels will follow the Ruth Miskin Fresh Start Programme. Further to this all staff plan and deliver their lessons in line with our literacy across the curriculum policy as well as providing literacy focused written feedback in all subjects.
Also, social disadvantage is addressed through programmes of study such as the Duke of Edinburgh Award in which team-work, physical fitness and emotional resilience are the key skills developed through exciting off-site adventures such as: weaselling, kayaking and gorge walking as well as volunteering for local projects and farms.
In addition to this, cultural capital is provided through our Enrichment programme; pupils can pursue and discover activities beyond the classroom in line with their more socially advantaged peers. They can choose to develop many skills including: learning to swim, climb, ice-skate, play a musical instrument or further their exploration and enjoyment of cooking and Art-our Enrichment programme is frequently reviewed to suit the interests and needs of the current pupil cohort.
Furthermore, throughout the year, pupils are encouraged to apply the knowledge acquired in the classroom participating in ‘My Endeavour Days’ which offer context and practical experience such as working within a competitive budget to calculate the costs, purchase ingredients and create a nutritional meal.
Our school council gives our young people the opportunity to learn how to express their views in a professional environment as well as understanding how they can make a positive influence to school life and the wider world. This is also a platform for us as a school to promote and celebrate leadership skills shown in our young people. Currently they are participating in the Eco Schools Award, raising money for a range of charities as well as discussing how to address any school issues.
We strive to ensure our young people are developing the skills and knowledge they need to make and implement informed and aspirational career decisions throughout their working life. We do so through a comprehensive programme of: Careers Education, Information, Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) which we continuously seek to improve in line with the Gatsby Benchmarks of good practice (DFE- Careers Strategy 12.17) Our programme includes exposure to the workplace and their employees, the full range of post 16 learning provisions and access to personal guidance and planning. We ensure that our pupils all have realistic plans in place to take their first step towards employment on leaving our school.
We pride ourselves on our high expectations of what our young people can achieve, a very large majority make progress beyond national expectations and the majority make expected progress academically, socially and emotionally.