Curriculum Statement 2017-2018
Our overarching, strategic aims for this academic year (2017/18) are:
- To ensure our curriculum provides students with the best chance of examination success at key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5.
- To continue to develop the curriculum at Key Stage 3 so that the key skills of lifelong learning, including literacy and numeracy, are embedded across all subject areas. Our specific school focus is on developing resilience and autonomy.
- To ensure our curriculum provides a broad and balanced experience for students reflecting the qualifications listed within the English Baccalaureate measure but fostering experience beyond this through our INVEST curriculum and co-curricular programme.
- To ensure that students have access to appropriate information, advice and guidance in order to select the most appropriate courses at Key Stage 4, Key Stage 5 and Post-18.
Curriculum Review and Development
The most recent Curriculum Review took place in 2015-16 to inform the curriculum from 2016-17. Working on a three-year cycle, the next formal review will be carried out at the start of 2018-2019.
Our current curriculum strategy emphasises retaining a broad and well-balanced curriculum for students. At HSFG, we are committed to continually improving our curriculum offer, to ensure it remains relevant and supports high quality teaching and learning.
All staff are able to contribute to discussions about curriculum through regular forums. Student voice is also increasingly consulted. Curriculum Link Governors meet with the Faculty areas and Senior Leadership Team to discuss the latest curriculum developments.
As an academy we are not obliged to follow the National Curriculum as prescribed by the DfE in 2013, however, in the interests of transition and progression from primary school through to Sixth Form we have opted to follow the spirit of the NC across the school.
HSFG operates a fixed ten-day timetable, comprising of 50 one-hour periods, eight x twenty-minute tutorial sessions and two twenty-minute assemblies.
Citizenship, including careers education and personal, social, health and economic well being, is taught by form tutors during some of the twenty minute tutorial sessions and in one lesson per timetable cycle for Years 8 - 11. Co-curricular days also address key PSCHE issues.
A wide range of enrichment and further study opportunities complement formal lessons during and after school as well as at weekends and during school holidays.
INVEST and INVEST Days
Our co-curricular programme of INVEST was introduced in 2016/2017 and complements our regular provision.
INVEST, named by our students, is an opportunity to invest in students’ future and personal development through something other than exam results.
At KS 4 and 5 students have a fortnightly or weekly INVEST timetabled session respectively, which gives them an opportunity to try something a bit different. This could be developing leadership skills through sports by working with primary school pupils, cooking on a budget, learning photography or gaining regular work experience though a weekly placement
There are also now 6 INVEST days during the year for the whole school. On these days normal timetabled classes are suspended and replaced by a special programme of extended learning opportunities.
Activities are often cross-curricular, for example study/revision skills, off-site visits, community work, citizenship events, outside speakers and themed days such as health, performing arts/creativity, cultural diversity and business/enterprise.
The aims of our INVEST Days are:
- To support an inspiring, holistic curriculum.
- To allow curriculum time for activities requiring longer than the normal lesson time
- Reduce curriculum disruption by off-site activities.
- Encourage the development of co-curricular activities.
- Develop students’ transferable skills and personal capabilities.
Details of what is taught in each Year Group can be found here:
Making Your Choices – GCSE Curriculum Options
HSSF Options Booklet – Our Sixth Form offer