The curriculum in practice
There are approximately 1660 students on roll who are taught in accordance with the National Curriculum by an exceptionally well qualified staff. The size of the school affords us an excellent range of specialist facilities and general resources. There is a common curriculum in the first two years (Years 7 to 8) consisting of art, design and technology (including food, resistant materials and textiles), drama, geography, history, mathematics, music, physical education, religious studies and science.
In Years 9, 10 and 11, students follow a selection of courses, after discussion with their parents and teachers, that provide a balanced education and opportunities for career progression. Part of this will be to cover several compulsory subjects such as, mathematics, English (language and literature), double award science (covering all the core elements of biology, chemistry and physics), physical education and social and religious studies. To enable students develop areas of interest, they are able to select several optional units that, in addition to the compulsory units, enable progression. These subjects can be selected from the areas of child development, humanities, technology, modern foreign languages, media studies, PE, dance and arts. Courses will be modified as the National Curriculum Orders require.
Religious studies involves an exploration of the origins of religion and the development of all major world religions, especially Christianity. If parents wish, for reasons of religious conviction, to withdraw their child from these lessons, they should discuss the matter with the Headteacher. Sex education conforms to the policy of the governing body, a copy of which is available to parents on request. Sex education is taught through certain elements of the national curriculum, for example science and physical education, and as part of religious studies and the tutorial programme. The content includes reference to and discussion of family relationships, birth control, child care and development, hygiene, health and morality. Careers education is delivered partly through the tutorial programme and partly through other areas of the curriculum. In Year 11, all students also have the opportunity to have interviews with members of the careers service. Any parents who are concerned about the curriculum being offered at the school should please contact the Head of Year in the first instance. Should s/he not be able to resolve the matter, it may be referred to the governors. The procedure for formal complaints is available here.