Curriculum at St Robert of Newminster School and Sixth Form College is developed to identify the key knowledge and skills that students need in order to be successful within the school community and beyond. Staff ensure this is delivered in an engaging way and support progress of students using assessment information and planning intervention both within the classroom and via a whole school approach.
Our overarching whole school intent aligns with our school and Trust’s vision and values. Our curriculum aims to develop pupils as a whole person. We develop knowledge and skills across key stages whilst addressing gaps to ensure progression. Our curriculum offer is broad and ambitious for all pupils. Subject choices include a range of academic, vocational and technical qualifications for all pupils to access. Where appropriate, for a very small percentage of pupils we will provide additional support in literacy, numeracy and personal development.
As a Catholic community, we offer a broad, well-rounded, appropriate curriculum, which is ambitious for all students and allows for depth of study as well as wider enrichment. The curriculum provides continuity and progress between and within Key Stages and ensures any missed learning is recovered. This prepares individuals for the next stage of their learning and for the wider world, who are committed to lifelong learning through developing the learner attributes of compassion, faith, ambition, respect and action.
Subject specific curriculum intent identifies crucial learning (knowledge and skills) that is required at each end point i.e. end of academic year/end of key stage, is sequenced accordingly and delivered to enable progression whilst addressing common misconceptions.
A modular approach is central to the structure of our curriculum to enable manageable learning allowing for gradual security of learning to aid long term memory. A review of progress at the end of each module identifies key concepts or skills to be revisited and enables for reflection of student study skills in terms of engagement within lessons and homework activities.
Schemes of work are designed around the building blocks of key concepts, knowledge and skills and common misconceptions. Curriculum plans outline long term planning to identify start and end points within this learning overview and includes opportunities within schemes for retrieval practice, interleaved learning and opportunities to deepen understanding of particular concepts.
Our curriculum delivery is centred around how we enable all pupils to know more, do more and remember more in relation to the end points identified within curriculum planning and therefore retrieval and interleaved learning opportunities are common features within the classroom. Staff are supported via CPD opportunities to implement the curriculum through effective modelling, scaffolding, explanations which are adapted as a result of effective assessment and questioning. Subject areas support students to be effective learners by promoting literacy and reading skills with exposure to and explicit teaching of relevant tier 2 and 3 vocabulary to supplement the broader whole school strategy within tutorial.
To ensure the progression of all students, our pupil conferences provide teaching staff with key strategies to assist them within lessons to best support students’ individual needs.
Staff have embedded blended and remote learning strategies into their daily practice to ensure provision and support for students through the use of our Teams platform.
Assessment and Reporting
In addition to the ongoing nature of formative assessment, we provide opportunity for three summative assessments to review progress in a timely fashion. Such opportunities enable leaders, teachers, students and parents alike, the opportunity to reflect upon how securely students have learned and understood the key concepts at that time of the academic year. At key stage 3, students and parents are provided feedback on whether or not the child is ‘developing’, ‘working at expected level’ or ‘working beyond expected level’ for this time of the year. This enables curriculum leaders to review and adapt their short term planning to account for any identified gaps to ensure progression to the end goal. At key stage 4 and 5, parents ands students are provided with an equivalent examination grade or course descriptor grade. At each assessment point, we collate information on students’ engagement and quality of work in lessons and through home learning to provide a rounded assessment of a student. This information is reviewed by curriculum leaders as well as pastoral leaders to identify any intervention cohorts.
In order to assess whether or not our intended curriculum is being implemented effectively, we ensure regular quality assurance procedures. This includes reviewing quality of learning via lesson visits, work scrutiny and pupil voice at a curriculum leader level. At a whole school level, we quality assure key cohorts via case studies in which students are shadowed across a number of lessons to gain a detailed perspective of the quality of their teaching and learning experience. We also engage in detailed curriculum conversations with curriculum leaders to review subject intent, implementation and impact and triangulate this with lesson visits, pupil voice and work scrutiny. In addition to this, we also utilise external support through the MAT to provide an impartial view which contributes to our self-evaluation and improvement planning.
For our curriculum overviews per key stage please click here
Parent Information Presentations
Pupils gain experience of a variety of subject areas in a broad and balanced programme of study that covers all the statutory subjects at KS3. All Year 7 pupils will start with either French or Spanish and the most able linguists will commence a second foreign language in Year 9. In Key Stage 3, students attend 24 curriculum based lessons and 1 PSHE lesson per week. In order to consolidate maximum progress in English and Mathematics, Year 7 pupils will receive 4 hours of English and Mathematics per week and Year 8 pupils will also receive 4 hours of English. All pupils study a broad range of subjects including: Art, Drama, DT, English, Geography, History, Health & Social Care, ICT/Computing, Maths, MFL, Music, PE, PSHE, RE, Science
Key Stage 3 Curriculum & Assessment Information
All students at Key Stage 4 study the core subjects of: English (students sit 2x GCSEs in English Language and English Literature.), Maths, PE, RE, Science Double Award or separate Sciences i.e. Biology, Chemistry and Physics. * i.e. Biology, Chemistry and Physics. *N.B. Pupils will be selected to study the Separate Sciences and parents/pupils consulted through the options process.
Key Stage 4 Options Policy
It is the aim of the school to make as many subjects as possible available to as many of our pupils as possible, whilst providing them with the greatest opportunities for success. Consequently we offer pathways through KS4 which take into account both prior attainment and motivation in subjects. These pathways should allow pupils to enjoy and be motivated in their studies, but most of all be successful. More information on the options process is available to Year 9 parents in an options information evening (date tbc; please see ‘dates’ section of the website).
GCSEs are qualifications at Level 2 in the National Qualification Framework. There has been a change towards a ‘linear’ form of assessment in all GCSEs. This means that the majority of assessment will be at the end of the course.
GCSE optional subjects include:
Art, Business Studies, Computer Science*, Drama, Engineering*, Food Prep and Nutrition, French, Geography, History, Health & Social Care, Music, Physical Education, Product Design, Spanish, Textiles. *Pupils may indicate a preference for these subjects and Heads of Department will confirm places available based on prior attainment in key subjects e.g. Maths
BTEC Technical awards and Cambridge National
BTEC Technical/Cambridge National are awards, which are designed to be taught alongside GCSEs, giving pupils a glimpse into a professional sector whilst teaching them transferable skills for life. They are graded across Level 1 and Level 2 to recognise the achievements of all pupils; are assessed using assignments and practical tasks to suit vocational students. As well as learning about the employment area they have chosen, students develop the skills to start a career.
BTEC Technical subjects include:
Digital Applications, Engineering
Cambridge National subjects include:
Health and Social Care If you require any further information, please contact us at email@example.com Further information on your child’s curriculum will be shared via Parent/Carer Information evenings, which are offered to parents/carers depending on the academic year of their child(ren). Please see the ‘date’ section for further information. The school will also inform parents by letter/text/app service.
Key Stage 4 Curriculum & Assessment Information
Key stage 5 Curriculum
Please visit the Sixth Form pages on our website for more information.
Mrs M Salmon: Senior Assistant Headteacher
Mr J Green: Assistant Headteacher (Pastoral including Careers information/Tech awards)
Mrs D Bayne: Head of Sixth Form College
For any further information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org