Teaching and Learning

Curriculum Statement

Our curriculum is designed to teach students the knowledge and skills they will need in order to successfully progress to the next stage of their education and to develop into well-rounded, thoughtful citizens. The school’s aim is for every child, regardless of ability, to be a successful learner, for every child to be engaged with, and excited by, learning. We want young people to be equipped with the knowledge and skills that will enable them to be independent, open-minded, fulfilled adults who are able to make the most of life’s opportunities.

In years 7 to 9 students study the full range of national curriculum subjects.

In year 7 students follow a modern foreign languages programme and study French, German and Spanish with a focus on language structures. At the end of year 7 students express a preference for the language they wish to study to GCSE and continue with this language into years 8 and 9.

In years 10 and 11 students continue to study the core curriculum and select four optional subjects. The governors continue to support the study of four options, rather than the more common three, in order that students maintain a broad and balanced curriculum. Governors are keen to ensure that arts and technology subjects continue to flourish.

Options are chosen in year 9 with courses beginning at the start of year 10. We do this because we believe that students should follow the full range of subjects until the end of year 9, avoiding a narrowing of the curriculum at too early a stage of their secondary education. A very small number of students in each year have a slightly adapted curriculum in order to provide additional support in maths and English, such that they are able to make progress in line with their peers. In year 7 some of this support is that provided by the year 7 catch up premium.

Students who study in the school’s enhanced resource are able to study an independent five-year curriculum that largely mirrors the mainstream curriculum but is pitched at a more appropriate level. These students typically will not study subjects to GCSE level but will gain entry level qualifications. Life skills forms a core element of teaching in the enhanced resource. The enhanced resource curriculum is structured in a way that allows students to integrate into mainstream lessons, including some GCSE groups, if it is appropriate.

The school has developed a high-quality Learning for Life programme which covers the statutory and non-statutory content of PSHE, SRE, British values, citizenship, careers education and elements of religious education. It also includes content on staying safe, including content on radicalisation and extremism. The programme is delivered through taught lessons in years 7 and 8, “Learning for Life Days” in all year groups, and through assemblies, tutor time activities and one-off events.

Staff are continually responding to the latest evidence-based research in education to inform practice; teachers make use of a variety of strategies to promote knowledge retention and develop essential skills for success. Underpinning all lessons is a focus on revisiting content, modelling good practice and an emphasis on the importance of literacy skills. Lessons aim to foster curiosity and enthusiasm for learning through careful planning and high-quality teaching that considers the individual needs of all. Students are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning and become resilient in overcoming setbacks, persisting with achieving their goals. Teachers aim to enthuse, engage, model and motivate, stressing wherever possible the significance of students’ learning and the purpose it will serve beyond school in the ‘real world.’

If you have any queries about our curriculum, please contact Mrs R Rongong, Deputy Headteacher, at rrongong@chapelhigh.org.uk.

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