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The Beaconsfield School A specialist Arts College

The Beaconsfield School Curriculum 2023-2024

 

1.Intent – What are the knowledge, skills and values we want our students to have?

The Beaconsfield School curriculum is underpinned by our core values of hard work, respect, responsibility, empathy and community. We see the curriculum as our students’ total experience of school, this includes the taught academic curriculum, the extra-curricular and enrichment opportunities we provide and the learning students gain from the mutually respectful relationships with staff at our school.

 

The aims of our school curriculum are:

  • To ensure students gain the knowledge, skills and qualifications they require to progress onto further education, apprenticeships or employment
  • To develop confident, responsible and articulate young people who are well prepared for life in modern Britain

2.Implementation – how do we structure our curriculum and why do we do it in this way? 

Our taught curriculum is structured into 5 x 1 hour lessons per day over a two week model. 

The school has a three year KS3 and a two year KS4 programme, we have deliberately retained a three year KS3 curriculum to ensure breadth of study for all students. The subjects taught and the time allocated in periods per fortnight are listed in the table below:

KS3

Subject

Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

English

8

8

8

Maths

8

8

8

Science

6

6

9

MFL – Spanish & French

3

3

3

Geography

3

3

3

History

3

3

3

RE

2

2

2

PE

4

4

3

Art

2

2

2

Music

2

2

2

Design Technology

3

3

3

Drama

2

2

2

Computing

2

2

0

PSHE

2

2

0*

MPC (My Personalised Curriculum)

0

0

2

*PSHE in Year 9 is taught through curriculum enrichment days

 

KS4 

 

Subject

Year 10

Year 11

Compulsory Core

English

8

8

Maths

8

9

Science

9

10

Religion and Ethics

2

0* taught via Curriculum Enrichment Days for 2023-2024

EBacc

Pathway

MFL – Spanish & French

5

5

Geography

5

5

History

5

5

Compulsory

PE

3

3

PSHE

Taught via Curriculum Enrichment Days

Optional subjects

Art

All optional subjects are allocated 5 periods per fortnight

Business

Computer Science

Drama

BTEC Design Technology

(Textiles/Graphics/Resistant Materials)

Food

Health and Social Care

Leisure and Tourism

Media

Music

Photography

PE

Action4Youth – Inspiration Programme

 

KS5 Curriculum 

At TBS our aim is to equip students with the necessary knowledge, skills and behaviours to become ‘life ready learners’ in order to progress successfully into their chosen future pathways. To achieve this, we provide a broad and balanced curriculum to all of our students that goes beyond the academic qualifications obtained. The curriculum offer is informed by a number of aspects: the interests of TBS students, the local labour market, opportunities for student progression and staff expertise. Students at TBS have very different needs and aspirations. By offering different pathways to our learners, we provide opportunities for all students to shape their own future whilst continuing their study. Some students take a purely academic or vocational pathway whereas others combine both academic and vocational. Students are prepared for progression to the next level so that they leave school as confident young people can be successful in whatever they choose to do. All students are full time learners on a challenging programme of study.

 

At Sixth Form students choose 3 main subjects and we offer courses in A Level, BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate and Level 3 Applied Qualifications. All qualifications are 2-year courses that complete in the Summer Term of the second year. Students are asked to select 3 Level 3 courses as this offers them a broad enough scope to meet the requirements for Higher Education and provides students with excellent depth of learning but also allows them to have capacity to engage in extra-curricular and leadership opportunities as well as opting into additional qualifications. All students have the opportunity to study the Extended Project Qualification and the Finance Certificate in Year 12. We also allocate additional lessons for those who did not reach Grade 4 in GCSE English and/or Maths. Subjects are allocated 8 x 1-hour lessons per fortnight.

 

2022-2023 was the final year of the school offering the IBCP programme and Level 3 BTEC National Foundation Diploma.

 

All students have timetabled lessons for study skill (5x50 minutes per week), PSHE/RSE/RE 1x1 hour per week) and Enrichment (1x50 minutes per week). Year 12s are also expected to complete 20x1 hour sessions of Community Service and have a week allocated to work experience in the Summer Term. Careers related learning happens throughout the year.

 

Our Sixth Form provide excellent role models for the rest of the school and play a large part in promoting our TBS Core Values of respect, empathy, hardwork, community and responsibility. Our Sixth Form students are encouraged to be involved in leadership opportunities in school, such as peer and academic mentoring, Head Team and Senior Prefect.

 

Subjects offered at KS5 are:

 

A Level

Applied

BTEC

Art. Craft and Design

Biology

English Literature

Geography

History

Maths

Psychology

Sociology

 

Business

Criminology

Science

IT

Sport

Media

Performing Arts

 

 

Curriculum maps are available for each subject discipline, these provide an overview of what is taught together with the rationale for sequencing the subject curriculum in this way.

Via weekly department planning time sessions, department subject teams regularly review the implementation of their curriculum in terms of whether the students are making sufficient progress, refining pedagogy in respect of the TBS Way and having dedicated time to improve subject knowledge as appropriate.

3.What are the distinctive features of our curriculum?

 

A focus on literacy –The school recognises that a proportion of our students do not have mastery of literacy skills once they leave primary school.  This has been further impacted by the Covid-19 lockdowns. All subjects have ‘responsive reading’ embedded within their planned curriculum, this is a 10-15minute reading task, linked to the topic being studied selected to expose students to high quality academic literature and broaden their vocabulary. The school runs a literacy nurture group in Year 7 and Year 8 and systematically assess students progress in reading as we believe this is a fundamental pre-requisite to success in the future for our students.

 

Personalisation – in Year 9 students have one period a week dedicated to ‘MPC’ – My personalised Curriculum. Students choose an enrichment or super-curricular course, these range from Song Writing, Criminology, Leadership through PE, and more, there are 9 choices available which are built around students interests. The school has chosen to dedicate curriculum time to these pursuits to foster students curiosity and interest in developing new skills, to recognise that not everything of value can be taught to students within the confines of academic subjects and to provide ways to deliberately enhance students cultural capital.

 

Courses that are engaging, relevant and achievable - At Key Stage 3, we have deliberately protected our broad curriculum, including Technology, Art, Drama, Music. TBS has made a deliberate choice to promote students completing the full Ebacc, while we operate in a selective county we have a significant proportion of high ability on entry students and it therefore entirely appropriate for the school to provide an academically rigorous and ambitious curriculum for our students.  We have ensured that every student has the opportunity to study the full Ebacc should they wish to do so.

 

Ensuring that the curriculum is ambitious and challenging for all students including those with SEND- we carefully track to ensure that all students have a robust and challenging curriculum, relevant to their needs.  All students have the opportunity to study a language and whilst some do not take it to further study at Key Stage 4, all have exposure to functional languages and the cultures behind them

 

4.How do we quality assure the quality of education our students receive?

 The school uses a variety of mechanisms to quality assure the provision our students receive, these are:

 

  • Learning Walks
  • Lesson Observations
  • Student Voice
  • Book Sampling
  • Assessment information review meetings
  • External partnership reviews via Challenge Partners and the ASTRA network.
  • Subject review meetings