Curriculum

Open Evening Wednesday 29th September

Curriculum Statement

Curriculum Intent

Our curriculum encompasses all that pupils learn, experience and become as a result of being members of our school family.

With Christ at the centre, our students are at the very heart of our school. We provide a broad and balanced curriculum that enables students to thrive and flourish. We seek to provide opportunities to realise the potential of each person within our care. We educate the whole person – academic, pastoral, moral, social, spiritual and physical.

Each person is ‘cherished for who they are, as much as for what they achieve’

Schools of Discipleship

As a learning community inspired by faith, we cherish each individual, celebrate all achievements and offer each other challenge and support, as together we follow Christ in self-giving, love and service. Our curriculum is a powerful means that supports us to nurture and mould our young people as discerning global citizens working for the common good.

Our curriculum will allow our pupils to acquire the key knowledge, understanding and skills to enable them to move on to their next stage in education. Pupils will have the opportunity to reach their full potential, regardless of ability or disadvantage.

Literacy and numeracy are essential life skills, in addition to being crucial for success in GCSE examinations across all subjects. These skills are supported by all departments to reinforce students’ learning across the curriculum, with specific and consistent strategies employed to improve literacy.

We have high expectations of behaviour for learning to enable pupils to fully access the curriculum. Pupils are encouraged to be active learners through explicit instruction on how to fully engage within lessons using SLANT.

Covid Update In the event of individual or group isolations and/or wider future lockdowns:

Students take part in effective remote learning which follows the curriculum as closely as possible. Any gaps in learning are assessed and effectively taught to ensure all pupils achieve their full potential.

Implementation

Our curriculum model is based around a connected curriculum where knowledge, skills and virtues are identified by each department and linked across subject areas. Our curriculum is broad and balanced and aims to meet the needs of all of our pupils in our truly comprehensive school.

In Key Stage 3 our curriculum is broad with all students studying all subjects until the end of Year 9.

Pupils opt in Year 9 for the 3 additional subjects that they will study in Key Stage 4 in addition to the core subjects of RE, English, Maths, Science and PE.

We operate a 2 week timetable and all students have 50 x 1 hour lessons each fortnight.

Year 7

Each fortnight Year 7 students study 5 hours of RE, 6 hours of Maths, 6 hours of English, 6 hours of Science, 4 hours of History, 4 hours of Geography, 4 hours of French or Spanish, 4 hours of PE, 3 hours of Design and Technology, 2 hours of ICT/Computer Science, 2 hours of Drama, 2 hours of Music, 1 hour of Art, 1 hour of Dance and 1 hour of PSHE.

Students are set in Maths and English but are mixed ability in all other subjects.

Year 8

Each fortnight Year 8 students study 5 hours of RE, 6 hours of Maths, 6 hours of English, 6 hours of Science, 4 hours of History, 4 hours of Geography, 4 hours of PE, 3 hours of French or Spanish, 3 hours of Design and Technology, 2 hours of ICT/Computer Science, 2 hours of Drama, 2 hours of Music, 2 hours of Art, 1 hour of Latin and 1 hour of PSHE.

Students are set in Maths and English but are taught in mixed ability groups in all other subjects.

Year 9

Each fortnight Year 9 students study 5 hours of RE, 6 hours of Maths, 8 hours of English, 9 hours of Science and 4 hours of PE. In addition, pupils study 2 hours of Design Technology, 3 hours of MFL (2 hours of French or Spanish and 1 hour of Italian), 2 hours of ICT/Computer Science, 2 hours of Geography, 2 hours of History, 2 hours of Drama, 2 hours of Art, 2 hours of Music and 1 hour of PSHE.  Much of this year is used as an exploratory, skill building and enrichment experience within all subjects. Teaching of the GCSE courses begins towards the end of year 9.

Pupils are set in Maths, Science and RE and are taught in mixed ability groups in all other subjects.

Pupils opt at the end of Year 9 for the courses that they would like to study at GCSE level.

Year 10

Each fortnight Year 10 students study 5 hours of RE, 8 hours of Maths, 8 hours of English, 9 hours of Science, 1 hour of PE and 1 hour of PSHE. Pupils also study 6 hours in each of their 3 option subjects. Option choice courses include:

  • GCSE History
  • GCSE Geography
  • GCSE French
  • GCSE Spanish
  • GCSE Italian
  • GCSE Computer Science
  • GCSE Triple Science
  • CNAT ICT
  • GCSE Business Studies
  • GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition and a small non-GCSE group
  • GCSE PE
  • CNAT PE
  • GCSE Art
  • GCSE Drama
  • GCSE Music
  • BTEC Music
  • CNAT Health and Social Care
  • Literacy and Numeracy support

Pupils are set in Maths, Science and RE and are taught in mixed ability groups in all other subjects.

Year 11

Each fortnight Year 11 students study 5 hours of RE, 8 hours of Maths, 8 hours of English, 9 hours of Science, 1 hour of PE and 1 hour of PSHE. Pupils also study 6 hours in each of their 3 option subjects. Option choice courses include:

  • GCSE History
  • GCSE Geography
  • GCSE French
  • GCSE Spanish
  • GCSE Italian
  • GCSE Computer Science
  • CNAT ICT
  • GCSE Business Studies
  • GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition
  • GCSE Design and Technology
  • GCSE PE
  • CNAT PE
  • GCSE Art
  • GCSE Drama
  • GCSE Music
  • BTEC Music
  • Literacy and Numeracy support

Pupils are set in Maths, Science and RE and are taught in mixed ability groups in all other subjects.

We meet all statutory curriculum expectations for our students from 11-16 years.

September 2021 developments:

  • Introduction of a new option choice for Year 9 of CNAT Health and Social Care.
  • All Key Stage 4 students will be studying 3 options rather than 4.
  • PSHE/RSE will be taught as a timetabled lesson for 1 hour each fortnight in all year groups.

Selected pupils in Year 9 have the opportunity to study GCSE Latin which is taught after school one night each week. This continues throughout Year 10 and 11 and is split between St Thomas a Becket and QEGs school sites.

In Key Stage 3, students are assessed using the SOLO (Structured Observation of Learning Outcomes) taxonomy. For each module of work, students are provided with descriptors of what is required to demonstrate a basic understanding and how to deepen their knowledge to progress their learning.  Whether the standard of their work is unistructural, multistructural, relational or extended abstract, they know what the next step is to improve and demonstrate a deeper understanding. Departments use language tailored to their subject when discussing these standards with students.

Expected progress is measured and reported in ‘Gears’. 3rd gear denotes expected progress with 2nd gear below, 4th gear beyond expected and 1st gear a cause for concern, triggering intervention by the class teacher in the first instance.

In Key Stage 4, GCSE grades are used when assessing and reporting student progress.

The acronym SPADE is used across both Key Stages to give feedback to students and ensure that they respond to feedback given. Strengths, problems and actions are fed back to students. They respond in developing their work. The teacher evaluates their improved version and /or their response to the feedback given.

Each year group has access to knowledge organisers for every subject. Pupils are encouraged to use these to prepare for assessments, exams and support home learning.

In addition, our pupils have opportunities to develop their faith through daily collective worship, weekly year group or house assemblies, Mass, prayer, meditation and reflection. A pupil chaplaincy group leads many of these activities.

Virtues education (character education) is embedded across the curriculum with individual virtues highlighted in curriculum plans and pupils being rewarded with virtues awards at achievement assemblies throughout the year.

Our pupils learn to serve others through charitable works and giving e.g. CAFOD and Catholic Care. Student voice and leadership within school is evidenced in a variety of opportunities such as the school council, senior pupil structure and the Lourdes pilgrimage.

Many enrichment activities are offered to pupils to further develop their skills, interests and knowledge.  All current Year 9 students are given the opportunity to enroll onto the Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award and all of Year 10 are enrolled onto the award.  The current Y11 students were enrolled onto the Bronze Award and a large number have achieved the Certificate of Achievement. Several Y11 students have gone on to achieve the full Bronze Award.

Multiple after school clubs enable students to take part in sports teams/coaching, art club, school productions, orchestras, bands and choirs as well as academic support with a comprehensive timetable of revision sessions offered each evening in multiple subjects. There are frequent opportunities for residential trips both in the UK and abroad to broaden life experience and allow pupils a glimpse of the wider world.

Impartial information, advice and guidance (IIAG) is provided through careers support in all year groups and particularly as they enter their final year with us to support their transition to the next stage in their education.

Covid Update In the event of individual or group isolations and/or wider future lockdowns:

High quality remote learning is provided through a combination of live lessons and assignments which follows the curriculum structure as closely as possible.

When pupils return to mainstream education to receive face-to-face teaching, each department follows a recovery curriculum aimed at developing lost learning.

Disadvantaged students identified as not completing home learning take part in afterschool catch-up sessions aimed at developing their learning to learn skills so that they can complete any missed learning and become more independent learners.

Impact

Pupils have qualifications that will be valued by employers and enable their next steps in education.

All students will have the opportunity to reach their full potential.

Our curriculum is accessible and meets the needs of all students regardless of ability.

In Key stage 3 attainment and progress will be measured against Key Stage 2 results/CATs scores using SOLO taxonomy and the Gears system. Assessment will take the form of both formative and summative.

In Key Stage 4 attainment and progress will be measured in GCSE/BTEC/CNAT outcomes. Assessment will take the form of both formative and summative.

In both Key Stages, Behaviour for Learning (BfL) data is also gathered and analysed at each interim report stage.

The success of IIAG will be measured against the post 16 destination data.

Through the curriculum, students will have developed their knowledge, skills and experience so they are empowered to recognise and realise their God-given potential. This will be reflected in:

Their commitment to a continuing faith journey

Their positive contribution to a better world through self-giving, love and service

A strong moral compass

The qualifications that they have achieved

Their readiness for the next stage of education, employment or training.

 

Each person is ‘cherished for who they are, as much as for what they achieve’

Schools of Discipleship

 

List of courses and exam boards available to students at Key Stage 4
Subject Course Studied Exam Board
Art GCSE Art & Design 8201 AQA
Biology GCSE Biology 8461F/H AQA
Business Studies GCSE Business Studies J204 OCR
Chemistry GCSE Chemistry 8462F/H AQA
Combined Science GCSE Trilogy(Double Award) 8464 AQA
Computer Science GCSE Computer Science  J276 OCR
Design Technology GCSE Design Technology 8552 AQA
Drama GCSE Drama 8261 AQA
English Language GCSE English Language  8700 AQA
English Literature GCSE English Literature 1ETO(N) EDEXCEL
English ELC Step up to English 5970 AQA
Food GCSE Food Preparation & Nutrition 8585 AQA
French GCSE French 8658F/H AQA
Geography GCSE Geography 8035 AQA
History GCSE History – Medicine in Britain C1250-present, Weimar & Nazi Germany 1918-39 & American West c1835-1895 with Henry and his ministers 1509-40  1H1A(AV) Edexcel
Health and Social Care CAMNAT Health & Social Care Level 1/2 OCR
ICT Level 1/2 Cambridge National Certificate in Information Technologies J808 OCR
Italian GCSE Italian 8633F/H AQA
Latin GCSE Latin C99OU10 Eduqas
Mathematics GCSE Mathematics 8300F/H AQA
Mathematics GCSE Mathematics J560 F/H OCR
Music GCSE Music 8271 AQA
Music BTEC Music Industry First Awards Level1/Level 2  21512E Edexcel
Music GCSE Music ( from YR10) 3660QS Eduqas
Physical Education GCSE Physical Education – full course 1PE0 Edexcel
Physical Education CAMNAT Sport Science Level 1/2    J813 OCR
Physical Education CAMNAT Sport Study Level 1/2      J812 OCR
Physics GCSE Physics 8463 AQA
Polish GCSE Polish 8688F/H AQA
Religious Education Religious Education A 1RA0/ZS Catholic Christianity with Judaism Edexcel
Science ELC Science 5960 AQA
Spanish GCSE Spanish 8698F/H AQA