We want all students to develop a lifelong love of music and be inspired to develop their creativity and talent as musicians. We believe that the study of music helps students to develop their self-confidence and has benefits across the curriculum in strengthening listening skills and critical appreciation. We endeavour to cater for a wide spectrum of musical abilities, to explore a variety of musical styles, to meet differing needs and interests and to prepare students with musical ambitions for a career in music.


Years 7-9

All students study music in years 7-9 and we follow the National Curriculum.

Year 7 Topics include:
The Elements of Music, Soundscapes, Musical Form and Structure, Voices in Layers, The Music of India, Samba.
Year 8 Topics include:
Chords, Jazz and Blues, Pop Music, Variations and Arranging, The British Folk Tradition, Reggae.
Year 9 Topics include:
Ground Bass, Hooks and Riffs, Club Dance Music, Music and the Media, GCSE preparation for those taking as an option in year 10.
Coursebook used Listening at Key Stage 3 Books 1 and 2.
Recommended websites for research or revision BBC Bitesize Music KS3

Years 10 and 11

In years 10 and 11, music is offered as an optional subject and is open to all. Students have access to a set of keyboards, acoustic guitars and ICT facilities capable of both score writing (Sibelius) and sequencing (Cubase) thus enabling all to succeed in the more challenging aspects of composition.

The OCR course provides a demanding but contemporary, accessible and creative education in music with an integrated approach to the three main elements – performing, composing and appraising.

Qualification GCSE Music
Board OCR
Syllabus number J536
Website link
Assessment details 60% coursework
40% listening exam
Coursework details Integrated portfolio ( performance and composition) 30%
Practical component ( performance and composition) 30%
Recommended coursebook GCSE Music Study Guide
Rudland / Galley/ Marshall
Published by Rheingold
Recommended revision guides OCR GCSE Music Revision Guide
Alan Charlton
Recommended websites BBC Bitesize KS4 and school VLE

Extra-Curricular Activities

We are particularly proud of the breadth and quality of our extra-curricular provision in music. The department has a concert band, a training and senior choir and several small ensembles who regularly perform both within school and the local community. All GCSE students take part in regular showcase performances.

The school performs an annual musical in conjunction with the drama department. Last year’s ‘South Pacific’ followed on from sell-out shows such as ‘Calamity Jane’, ‘Guys and Dolls’ and ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ to name a few.

Each year the music department works alongside the partner primaries to produce the Youth Presents Music concerts. Each school performs its own 20 minute programme with all students contributing to the finale ensemble.

We also support students pursuing Grade 5 theory in after school sessions.

Peripatetic Teaching

We are fortunate enough to have the facilities to offer a wide and varied programme of instrumental teaching.

The school is supported by the Derbyshire County Music Partnership and most of our visiting teachers are accredited by this service. The following tuition is provided:

Clarinet and saxophone, flute, brass, violin, piano, all guitars, drum kit and voice.

Students making good progress are entered on a regular basis for ABRSM exams and Rock School exams by their teachers. Progress of students and teachers is monitored on a regular basis by both the school and Derbyshire County Music Partnership. Students who have reached Grade 2 and beyond are encouraged to join our school’s instrumental groups in order to benefit from ensemble playing. A grade 6 in an instrument counts towards students’ GCSE points score.

Ofsted Outstanding School
Peak 11
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