Click to read our Curriculum Policy 2020
Sir William Robertson Academy’s aim is for all of our pupils to Aspire to be the best that they can be and this core principle drives our vision for curriculum content, sequencing and delivery.
Our ambitious, broad and balanced curriculum is designed to be challenging, inclusive and accessible for all of our pupils. It is based upon five pillars of curriculum thinking and teaching and learning which have been developed in response to educational research, local and national agendas (including EBacc at the heart of the curriculum for those pupils for whom it is judged to be appropriate) as well as the specific context of the students and staff within the academy. The five pillars outline that the curriculum is connected, inclusive, knowledge-building, applied and regularly reviewed.
Our pupils have a three-year Key Stage 3, a two-year Key Stage 4 and a two-year Key Stage 5. The rationale for this curriculum model is as follows:
- Pupils have the opportunity to study a broad range of subjects which are academic, creative, practical and build their knowledge of various areas of life, society and culture
- Pupils study content which is at least as extensive as the national curriculum in every subject. Consequently pupils’ knowledge development is broad and deep and will support them at later stages of their education as well as in their lives beyond school
- Substantive and disciplinary knowledge are thoughtfully sequenced to enable pupils to develop schemata within and between their subjects
- Pupils of all abilities follow a broad curriculum including the arts, humanities and languages at Key Stage 3 and as a result, at Key Stage 4 and 5.
- Our options process ensures our pupils retain a broad and stimulating curriculum in Year 10 and Year 11.
- Opportunities for advice and guidance before beginning Year 12 ensures pupils access an appropriate and challenging curriculum to support their lives beyond school.
- A range of cultural capital visits, WOW Days and extra-curricular activities allow pupils to engage with their subjects beyond the classroom and enhance their cultural capital.
- The knowledge, understanding and skills which pupils develop during their Key Stage 3 studies provide a platform for achievement at GCSE and A Level. We firmly believe that outstanding examination results establish the foundation for all of our pupils to achieve their personal ambitions and create opportunities for further study and career development.
Our curriculum has been thoughtfully planned with a clear whole school vision in place to ensure consistency of quality and opportunities for meaningful interdisciplinary work to take place. The five pillars of curriculum thinking provide this clarity and simultaneously offer flexibility for each subject area to retain the creative freedom to engage in innovative and exciting curriculum thinking.
The five pillars and some of the research which underpins them are outlined here:
Under the structure of the five pillars, the curriculum has been organised to:
- Provide stretch, challenge and appropriate support for all pupils
- Build substantive and conceptual knowledge and schemata through an ongoing process of connecting new knowledge with existing knowledge
- Build cultural capital and an awareness of the variety of perspectives, cultures and identities which have contributed to the development of Britain, Europe and the world
- Develop critical thinking, questioning and independent learning skills
- Assess the learning of pupils to ensure knowledge is embedded, inform subsequent planning and evaluate the impact of the curriculum
- Support pupils in developing the sophistication of their written and spoken communication
- Promote the spiritual, moral, social, cultural, mental and physical development of our pupils
- Promote fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect of those with different faiths and beliefs
- Provides expert, up-to-date careers guidance that is presented impartially and gives our pupils access to the best information available
- Prepares pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and challenges of their life beyond school and provides them with the necessary skills to be lifelong learners
We ensure that the needs of our pupils drive our curriculum provision. Whilst confirming our commitment to the broad and balanced principles of the National Curriculum, we also celebrate a range of pupil achievements and use our collective expertise to drive excellence and foster innovation. The legal scope for our curriculum is set out as per the Funding Agreement available on our website.