KS4 Compulsory Curriculum
In compliance with national curriculum requirements those pupils who do not choose to study computer science at GCSE level are given the opportunity to study aspects of information technology and computer science at sufficient depth to allow them to progress to higher levels of study or to a professional career.
The national curriculum states that pupils at KS4 should be taught to:
- develop their capability, creativity and knowledge in computer science, digital media and information technology
- develop and apply their analytic, problem-solving, design, and computational thinking skills
- understand how changes in technology affect safety, including new ways to protect their online privacy and identity, and how to report a range of concerns
This is achieved through a diverse range of uses and activities which make purposeful and relevant use of technologies, within other subject lessons.
Through PSHRE lessons students explore a whole host of issues related to the safe use of technology. For example, they learn look at screen time and safe use of mobile phones. They also explore what it is like to be part of the social media generation, where they discuss how it can distort our view of the real world and what makes social media sites so popular, and the harm this can cause individuals. They also explore issues such as sexualisation so that students can correctly identify what to do to if they become a victim, extremism and radicalisation so that they can correctly identify a range of internet subcultures, and describe how these can be dangerous or harmless. To protect their online privacy, students discuss the long and short term consequences of sharing intimate images with partners or friends. They also learn about the legal, short and long-term consequences for perpetrators and victims.
Students can demonstrate their creativity and capability in computer science in subjects such as in Music (using specialist software for music composition and notation) and in Art and Photography (by performing digital manipulation using software such as Photoshop). In Design Technology pupils develop their competency and use of Computer Aided Design (CAD) software and a 3D printer.
Analytical and problem solving skills are developed throughout school but in particular the practical scientific subjects, mathematics and computing allow students the opportunity to demonstrate these skills through a variety of challenging activities that require logical thinking and decision making.
Within all subjects, pupils will also use and develop their ICT skills to carry out research, analyse data, produce written reports making use of graphs and charts to visually illustrate and allow analysis of data, skills that will be important at university and beyond.
We believe that the learning experienced by our students across all subjects is enhanced through the creative and effective use of technology and that these combined experiences do offer all of our students the necessary skills and knowledge required to progress to higher levels of study and onto successful professional careers in the future.
In years 10 and 11 the pupils have three hours per fortnight. In year 10 they will take part in competitive and recreational sport. We offer three pathways that enable students to perform to the best of their ability and build on their existing skills and understanding. The competitive pathway typically follows the fixture seasons and includes sports such as, Hockey, Rugby, Football and Netball. The recreational pathways explore practices in Ultimate Frisbee, Functional Fitness, Rugby and Boxercise. All students complete a unit in Athletics where they perform at maximum levels which aids their ability to come together on community Sport Day.
A significant number of KS4 pupils take part in a huge range of extracurricular activities and also assist in running many of the lower school sports sessions, such as Year 7 Netball and Swimming clubs.
As part of the DofE offer students are encouraged to take part in clubs as part of their ‘Physical’ assessment, many students also use PE to evidence learning a new ‘Skill’ or through ‘Volunteering’.
PSHRE entitlement for students in KS4 (Years 10 and 11) is designed to complement the issues and topics covered by those academic subjects studied by all students. For example, the curriculum for Science addresses several topics that relate to PSHRE, such as risk management, environmental issues and links to drugs and sex education.
Guest speakers are used to enhance the PSHRE programme, for example SARI (Stand Against Racism and Inequality, the local PCSO, a Careers Advisor, employers and an Apprenticeships and Skills Advisor. The KS4 sessions are delivered once a fortnight by their tutor and are created by the lead for PSHRE and head of year, which include sessions on gambling and internet addiction, problem related to watching pornography, gangs, knife crime and county lines plus radicalisation and extremism.
More details can be found on the following link: click here
Core Religious Education
For those who do not choose to do RE as an option subject, there is the Core Programme. This course is to encourage students to look hard at the world and think about ethical and moral issues which surround us. We will introduce them to religious and secular viewpoint and expect them to formulate their own conclusions after seeing the views of others. Both Oxford and Cambridge University include the study Religious Studies in the top-level list of ‘generally suitable’ for university.
This course encourages thinking about the connections between religion, citizenship and the personal issues people may face in life. The course will help students to develop their knowledge and understanding of the world around them as they explore the moral impact of the decision we make. Students will explore the views of Christians and Buddhists and develop their skills in evaluating them and explaining their own reasoned opinion.
Each unit of work is viewed from a secular and religious viewpoint, students are encouraged to express their own opinion, but it is vital that they are also able to refer to differing viewpoints and appreciate diversity of belief. We use DVD films as a hook and a way to introduce a discussion and investigation of a variety of topics:
- The Sanctity of life and medical ethics; specifically, regarding cloning and stem cell research using “The Island
- Crime and punishment; Looking at recent criminal cases in the UK and having a debate on the use of the death penalty using “Dead Man Walking
- Human Rights; Focussing on women’s rights using “Suffragette” to show how things have changed in the last 100 years
- Prejudice, Abortion and Euthanasia: investigate the religious and secular views on these topics using “Gatacca”
- War, Peace and justice; Using “Blood Diamond”, and Selma to show how the west has taken advantage of poor countries and discriminated against BAME peoples
These topics are taught over years 10 and 11. Students study core Religious Studies for one lesson a week.
Assessment will take place within lessons and progress will be monitored through the awarding of GCSE type grades.
The school follows the Gatsby Benchmarks and part of this ensures that every year group experiences at least one meaningful interaction with an employer. Our own school standards dictates that this rises to three in both year 10 and year 11 and specifically to include breaking gender stereotypes so engineering, armed forces etc.
All the information on careers can be found on our website: click here