Key Stage 4 Curriculum
During Key Stage 4, the curriculum builds on the subjects and activities of Years 7 and 8, links with the proposed post-16 curriculum, and is served by the same core principles – with each child:
- being treated as a unique individual with a personalised curriculum
- enjoying positive relationships between students and staff
- experiencing an enabling environment that stimulates learning
- discovering innovative approaches to learning and personal development both as a team leader and a team player
- having an integrated, holistic curriculum driven by Performing Arts and Mathematics
Subjects and Themes
The core curriculum will be based on the English Baccalaureate and include English, Mathematics, Science, foreign and classical Languages, Humanities (History and Geography) and Ethics. It will also offer a range of choices in Performing Arts – Dance, Drama and Music. In the extended curriculum, further options that might be available include: Art, Economics, Theatre Studies, Photography, Electronics, Business Studies, Media, Geology, Philosophy, ICT (Information and Communications Technology), Sociology and Psychology.
Mindful of the recently published Wolf Report that suggests an 80/20 division between academic and vocational courses, during this phase there will also be opportunities for vocational education. Each student will have an academic tutor who will guide them and their parents on the choices to be made at the end of Year 8 to ensure they make an appropriate selection to suit their individual interests and aptitudes.
Each student will also be allocated an external coach who will help widen the student’s horizons in terms of the world of work and further and higher education. The curriculum will be enriched with visits to high-profile educational and business institutions. A raft of external speakers will provide inspiration and motivation to complement the Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG) programme and Enterprise drop-down days which will give students direct experience of the challenges that await them in the world of work. The development of leadership and team-building skills will be a core theme of these programmes.
A lively and engaging extra-curricular programme will operate after school on four nights of the week and will be staffed by members of the school community, volunteers and professionals. These activities will aim to stimulate curiosity, inform and generate a lifelong love of learning alongside developing new hobbies, interests and skills that can also be accredited. Music tuition will be a key part of this programme, leading to the formation of high-class performance ensembles.
Both the core and extended curricula and the extra-curricular programmes will be supported by a well-stocked library and research facility, and state-of-the-art ICT systems.
The spiritual development of students will be a core element of all programmes, though most obviously evident in the newly-devised Philosophy & Ethics course which will build from Reception right through to Year 13. The course will encompass a study of all major world religions, critical thinking and the development of an informed moral code that produces a strong sense of individual responsibility and accountable citizenship within the community.