Our Curriculum Model Rationale and Entitlement

Our Curriculum Model and Rationale

Curriculum Entitlement

Our curriculum is engineered to our context, calibrated to the needs of our students and tuned to the highest standards; it reflects the ambitious intentions of the National Curriculum and will widen the horizons of students beyond their lived experience. We serve a vibrant city that is a centre of artistic, engineering and sporting excellence. We educate all students through an ambitious five year curriculum so that they develop a broad knowledge base. They learn how to be subject experts by studying the best that has been thought, said and done in each subject discipline. Our aim is to educate well-rounded and responsible citizens who can fulfil their potential and ability to play a positive role in society. This will support all students to be successful in a world of opportunity and choice. This academic work is supported by a focus on reading and oracy across the curriculum. 

Students begin their secondary experience studying a rich, academic programme of English, maths, science in which they will continue through a single five year curriculum. This allows students to develop a secure schema in each discipline due to well-sequenced teacher instruction. We will work with students so that they develop a mastery of the curriculum and are positioned to go to university, high quality training, apprenticeships or employment.

We celebrate the industry and innovation of our city, we plan an exceptional Science curriculum with expert instruction and extensive curriculum time. Students will gain a deep theoretical and practical understanding of the scientific method and the big ideas that have developed through the application of this philosophy. We provide students with the opportunity to study Separate Sciences and all students will study at least two Science GCSEs. This will allow them to gain places at the best universities or careers in Engineering, Law, Medicine or the Sciences.

An ambitious academic curriculum begins from the start of their secondary education. This includes geography, history, modern foreign languages, physical education, computer science, religious education and citizenship studied through our RE/Life programme as well as a range of creative and expressive arts including art, music, drama and technology subjects such as food and resistant materials. This broad academic study continues throughout Year 7, Year 8 and Year 9. 

Computer Science will ensure that all students are proficient with computers, can navigate the virtual world safely and utilise this knowledge and these skills to excel in the workplace and elsewhere. Within the key stage 3 programme of study they will also learn advanced coding techniques and will be prepared for further study at key stage 4 and beyond.

During these first years of their secondary education, this curriculum entitlement is enhanced further with opportunities, through our elective curriculum, for subject mastery and further breadth will offer a range of clubs, enrichments and societies. This will include sports clubs, elite sports, performing arts and subject clubs. Students study a broad range of subjects to deepen their educational experience and build a solid foundation of subject knowledge and skills.

Academic & technical study at Level 1 / Level 2, including GCSE, are studied across two years offering a wide entitlement to subjects including those which make up the Full English Baccalaureate; GCSE in one English, literature or language, mathematics, two sciences, including computer science, one humanities subject, geography or history, and a modern foreign language.

In order to support students to gain our hallmarks of industry, innovation and integrity we allow students to commence a specialism in Y9 in either Engineering, Hospitality and Catering, Art, Drama, Music, Health and Social Care or Sports Studies. While this gives students a chance to excel in a subject that this city is famous for, the curriculum is kept broad by maintaining time in all other subjects. We are ambitious for students and recognise the cognitive benefits of learning to study another language as well as the opportunity to see the world through the eyes of others. In year 10, students will select two guided pathways where they will be encouraged to develop new academic interests or deepen their understanding of their specialism. This will support the entitlement of all our students to a broad and balanced, and academically rigorous curriculum steeped in enhancement of cultural capital. All students will study either geography or history (or both if so desired). They will also be encouraged to take a language; and in doing so, engage with the Full EBacc suite of subjects. We are ambitious in our intent for a majority of students to study this important set of subjects.

We design time and flexibility for large numbers of students to choose creative subjects for study up to 16 years old. Further personalisation and flexibility in the curriculum architecture allows students to extend or consolidate their studies in Year 11. Students prepare for post-16 study and burnish their knowledge and skills so that they gain the academic passport required for their next steps. They can choose to supplement or advance their specialism, for example by studying photography having spent two years working with mixed media in Art. They can follow their interests and gain a specialism in an unexamined subject that might support their future study or career. Equally, they can consolidate an existing subject so that they have the best possible choices available to them as they leave our care. We will only enter students for a qualification at the point that they are ready and will gain their best possible grade.

We take every opportunity to develop the industry, innovation and integrity of our students. Our Intrinsic Curriculum is coordinated by our “Hallmark Routines” to ensure that each interaction develops the character of our student. Our enhancement curriculum deliberately teaches each of our hallmarks through a programme of assemblies, tutor times and Life lessons so that students understand and reflect on their development. Our Academic and Elective curricula are planned and sequenced to give students opportunities to demonstrate the character traits that will lead to success in later life. In doing so we put students first, raise standards and transform lives.