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Key Stage 3 Learning

Our Lower Academy Curriculum

Leaders have developed a broad curriculum. Pupils now study a wider range of subjects than they did before, such as French and music. These changes better prepare pupils to go on to study subjects that make up the English Baccalaureate.

Ofsted 2023

The key focus of the curriculum at the Lower Academy is ‘Active Learning’.

This focus ensures all students have the opportunity to participate and develop oracy, teamwork, leadership, cooperative skills and a passion for learning. 

Our KS3 Offer includes: English, Reading, Maths, Science, History, Geography, Active Humanities, RE/Citizenship, French, Music & Performing Arts, Computing & Technology, Art, Catering, PE, RSHE & Enrichment. This offer builds into KS4 and KS5 pathways for students, allowing 2 free choice academic and technical qualifications, along with Statistics to support attainment in Mathematics.

The impact on our learners are enhanced active learning opportunities, strengthened foundation skills, and differentiated learning opportunities that maximize progress. Our students become strong reflective learners that take ownership of their progress.

The progress students make is tracked using Personalised Learning Checklists (PLCs). This allows teachers to continually diagnose the progress students make and provide therapies to support learners in the areas where they need it most. Progress is measured using the Academy Progress Steps. We also aim for students to become expert in 20 key skills in every discipline before their transition to Key Stage 4.

A whole school approach to the promotion of Reading and Numeracy is at the heart of Lower Academy teaching and learning. All students in Year 7 & 8 study a reading curriculum designed to secure foundation skills to support students across their curriculum subjects. Numeracy in Action is experienced throughout the curriculum, with identified numeracy strands being supported by each department.

In order to enrich and extend our provision we have deliberately designed the curriculum to include non-assessed elements to support contextual knowledge and skill building beyond qualifications, including:

  • Daily Enrichment
  • RE/Citizenship
  • Weekly Mentoring (Current Affairs)
  • PSHE delivery (RSE)

All students engage in an enrichment each day as part of their curriculum.  The enrichment activity takes place for 30 minutes, forming an essential part of our core curriculum. We recognise the power and impact that quality enrichment can have on young lives and minds.

Our enrichment programme is an essential and valuable part of our school day. The age appropriate enrichment model supports a ‘Passion for Learning’ in Key Stage 3, a ‘Passion for Purpose’ in Key Stage 4 and a ‘Passion for Life’ in Key Stage 5. Our enrichment curriculum builds student resilience, self-esteem, sense of belonging and love of learning.  It provides equity of opportunity, stretch & challenge, employability skills and broad experiences.  The enrichment curriculum supports our student cultural capital and social mobility.

L Sherman
Headteacher

We are proud that the academy provides curriculum pathways catering for specific needs. To provide challenge for the most able students, and target support for those in need we have developed an Express Pathway and a Nurture Pathway.