Pupils leave a GAT Academy with the academic qualifications & wider skills, characteristics & experiences, which will assist them to lead successful & happy lives.
Kingswood’s Curriculum Intent:
To develop an aspirational, knowledge based and carefully sequenced curriculum that enables all learners to acquire and demonstrate deep knowledge through interconnected webs of ideas and concepts underpinned by knowledge and experience of vocabulary, cultural capital, SMSC and the KSA Core Competencies.
Principles of design:
In order to achieve this our curriculum is designed around the following principles:
Aspiration – Intentionally exposing our students to, and engaging them in, a range of Aspiration and Career opportunities throughout our planned curriculum.
What: We intentionally expose our students to, and engage them in, a range of Aspiration and Career opportunities throughout our planned curriculum.
All Key stages:
- Appointment of our Aspiration and Careers Lead.
- Achieving and maintaining Career Mark ensures challenge, compliance and external validation of our work
- All students have access to the Careers library / resources; an online Careers platform (Kudos / Launchpad) and support from Prospects
- Focus on Core Competencies in form time and lessons across the curriculum (as identified in the Medium Term Plans)
- In our Medium term plans opportunities for promotion and reinforcement of Aspiration & Careers are identified. Look out for use of our A&C logo.
- Year 7: Students have access to A&C material in form time during an allocated term through PSHE – See A&C Curriculum Map
- Year 8: Students in Year 8 meet a range of employers and higher education providers in a speed dating event / Options choices (usually an evening for parents and students) / support from Ian Doherty (Prospects) / DHL offer (virtual workshops / Outward Bound)
- Areas for development in 2020-2021 – Curriculum Development for financial literacy (pay day loans) & health (lower life expectancy).
- We offer all of our students visits to at least one (in Y9) university to experience it for themselves
- We bring a wide range of employers, university students and other speakers into Kingswood in order to broaden horizons and raise aspirations / DHL virtual offer / we take selected groups of students to key events / host activities on site (e.g. construction)
- We provide students with the one-to-one Information Advice and Guidance they need to make informed choices for their next steps. Our excellent working relationship with Prospects helps to deliver this.
- We work closely with NCOP / Uni Connect (based at University of Northampton) to provide a wide range of opportunities for our students, including; the opportunity to work with Commando Joe, Visit University, participate in an art enrichment programme, work with Medical Mavericks as well as many other initiatives.
- All students are offered UCAS support through our School Librarian and form tutors / Head and Deputy Head of Sixth Form
- A range of employers, Universities and further education providers present to students including those providers with knowledge of UCAS processes, student finance and student wellbeing / student visits to Universities
- All Year 12 students participate in work experience
Core knowledge – a minimum entitlement that all pupils will be required to know, grounded in the National Curriculum.
What: A minimum entitlement that all pupils will be required to know, grounded in the National Curriculum.
Why: By rooting the curriculum in the solid consensus of the knowledge and skills that pupils need in order to take advantage of opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life, we can help to powerfully address social disadvantage.
All Key stages:
- Our MTPs both define what we mean by Core Knowledge and provide the vehicle for clear identification of it in our planning
- The curriculum remains as broad as possible for as long as possible. Pupils are able to study a strong academic core of subjects, such as those offered by the EBacc.
- There is high academic/vocational/technical ambition for all pupils, and the school offers this broad curriculum to all pupils including disadvantaged / or pupils with SEND a reduced curriculum.
- The Academy curriculum is ambitious and makes the study of Ebacc available to all Students whilst realising some students may have more success following an alternative route. The greatest barrier to improving success in Ebacc has been languages, by partnering with Teach First Ebacc outcomes are rapidly improving (from -0.28 18/19 to +0.5 19/20).
- Inclusive planning grids help to ensure SEND students can access the knowledge and cultural capital. Careful provision mapping ensures SEND students receive the additional in class and out of class support required, priority for teaching assistance in lessons goes to EHCP students.
- There is an ambitious and carefully planned curriculum for students in the DSP and the vast majority of DSP students are integrated into the main Academy curriculum for at least one subject.
- Significant staff development time is given to subject development of Curriculum Maps and medium-term plans (MTPs) in order to make Intent, Implementation and Impact clear.
- Through a combination of planned low stakes and high stakes assessment the Academy is increasingly helping learners embed and use knowledge fluently as well as to check understanding and inform teaching.
- We offer a broad curriculum in KS3 with students experiencing the arts (Music, Art, Dance, Drama), languages (French, Spanish), humanities (Geography, History, Religious Studies) Information Technology, and technology subjects (Textiles, Food Technology, Technology).
- Students continue with a core of English literature and language, maths, science (double or triple) and PE, and then select three further options.
- The curriculum is further developed in our Sixth Form, where a broad range of academic and vocational qualifications are offered for example academic A levels, as well as Level 3 BTEC and CTEC qualifications which offer a more practical and industry related experience. At the heart of this personalised work is ensuring the right students are on the right courses. The careful alignment of students and courses, high quality delivery, and first-class pastoral care are key components of the Academy’s Sixth Form provision.
- We have introduced ESB Level 3 Award in debating to further develop student’s oracy and thinking skills.
Procedural/Powerful knowledge – the skills that pupils need in order to build upon, challenge and contest core knowledge so they can expand beyond their own experiences and "think the unthinkable and the not yet thought" (Young).
What: The skills that pupils need in order to build upon, challenge and contest core knowledge so they can expand beyond their own experiences and “think the unthinkable and the not yet thought” (Young)
Why: We owe it to our students to help develop in them the skills to be successful in the future, in particular in the work place. Furthermore, by identifying the link between our planned subjects (a presentation in English / Geography etc) and skills that are being developed (e.g. Communication) then the curriculum that is being delivered is seen as of more importance in the student’s eyes. Staff too will be helped to see the link between their lesson and students’ futures.
All Key stages:
- To help our students to be successful we have worked with SEMLEP to identify the Core Competencies that employers need. These are increasingly embedded into our Medium Term plans and are explicitly taught and discussed through the learning. This helps to contextualise the learning, making it relevant and engaging for learners. Our identified Core Competencies are:
- Problem solving
- Digital literacy
KS3: See MTPs for all subjects
KS4: See MTPs for all subjects
KS5: See MTPs for all subjects
Developing cultural capital – broadening horizons and exposing pupils to the vast wealth of experiences in the wider global society be that the arts, music, sport, leadership opportunities and extra-curricular pursuits.
What: Broadening horizons and exposing pupils to the vast wealth of experiences in the wider global society be that the arts, music, sport, leadership opportunities and extra-curricular pursuits
Why: Cultural capital is intrinsically linked to economic and social capital. Access to economic and social capital allows greater access to cultural capital, as a side effect, cultural capital is often linked to social class and as a result reinforces social divisions, hierarchies of power and inequality within society (Pierre Bourdieu 1973). It is therefore our responsibility as educators to enable students “to be culturally literate is to possess the basic information needed to thrive in the modern world” Cultural Literacy (1988), ED Hirsch. Therefore at KSA, we deliberately plan for opportunities within the curriculum to expose students to new thinking, ideas and situations that develop a greater understanding of the world enabling them to become well-informed individuals.
All Key stages:
- Opportunities to develop cultural capital are purposefully planned into the broad and balanced curriculum in order that students can aspire to what they have experienced. These opportunities are clearly identified in our Medium Term Plans (MTPs)
- Ensure that there is a cogent and embedded approach to acquiring new vocabulary across the curriculum, vocabulary associated with new ideas, situations and information that will be related to a range of activities.
- Provide opportunities to expand students horizons beyond the classroom with trips to the theatre, museums and via public speakers speaking on topics of contemporary significance
- Build on the vast array of vocabulary laid down in KS3 through exposition of a wider range of cultural activities and learning about new thinking and ideas.
- Expose students to a range of oppositional and culturally diverse viewpoints and ideas (taken from across the globe) in order to push students understanding, vocabulary and questioning
- Further develop students’ philosophical and critical thinking on an even more diverse range of global topics and new contexts, inspiring debate, questioning and continued development of high level vocabulary (University level).
Developing character – enabling our students to RISE. In particular developing our Core Values of: Respect, Independence, Service & Empathy
What: Enabling our students to RISE. In particular, developing our core values of Respect / Independence / Service to the Community / Empathy in everyone
Why: Our students need to thrive as individuals and members of society
All Key stages:
- As part of a whole-school approach, the Personal Development programme develops the qualities and attributes of Respect, Independence, Service to the community and Empathy that all of our students need to thrive as individuals and members of society.
- Developing students Empathy through reflection activities designed to encourage them to value the view-points of others whilst gaining more of an understanding of how to manage their responses to challenging situation
- Building Independence through embedding the Kingswood Learning Habits of: being in school on time; perfect uniform; being ready to learn; responding positively first time, every time and being in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing
- Developing Respect through a Restorative Justice approach to building positive relationships between adults and students
- Expanding our Service to the Community by providing opportunities to participate, such as the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and growing the first school-based Emergency Services Cadet Force
- At KS3, the SHINE Alternative Provision provides a more appropriate learning environment for those students for whom mainstream education has proved too challenging to cope with due to significant behavioural problems
- SHINE provides a bespoke curriculum and individual behaviour support packages that enable all students to thrive and be the best versions of themselves
- All students are following the Jigsaw PHSE program which is a comprehensive and robust series of resources which explores a key PSHE area per term: Being Me; Celebrating Differences; Dreams and Goals; Healthy Me; Relationships examines how to have healthy relationships and incorporates the new OFSTED framework for RSE; Changing Me looks at the physical and mental changes that happens with topics such as puberty and self-esteem
- LORIC - PIXL resources help students to develop their practical skills in communication, organisation, building resilience and leadership
- Enrichment - At lunch and after school all students are encouraged to attend creative art or sports clubs and community projects such as our Christmas charity appeal or supporting East Carlton Park forest regeneration programme
- PSHE follows the same Jigsaw themes and topic areas with greater focus on well-being, preparation for GCSE exams, revision skills and post 16 opportunities
- LORIC – Students are taught a greater range of organisational and communication skills with a focus on coping with anxiety and lessons that look at careers and aspirations
- Enrichment – As well as the DofE, Emergency Service Cadets, and clubs, Year 10 students are encouraged to be part of our prefect system which involves lots of community and public events
- PSHE- 6th form students follow a range of key topics in well-being, organising your finances, UCAS applications, university life and careers advice
- LORIC – KS5 students use the PIXL resources to help develop their oracy skills for university interviews and job applications
- Enrichment – Students have a wide variety of enrichment opportunities ranging from guest speakers such as our local MPs to university and careers advisors.
- Students also have the opportunity to participate in the ETON X project for improving self-study and a pathways to Law and Medicine programmes
Identifying and addressing context specific need – our pupils are unique and valued members of our community. As such they come with specific contextual needs which our curriculum will address e.g. Literacy, numeracy, oracy, health and finance issues.
What: Our pupils are unique and valued members of our community. As such they come with specific contextual needs which our curriculum will address.
Why: By tackling the significant contextual needs of our students we can better equip them for a happier, and healthier and more prosperous future
All Key stages:
- The importance of literacy is further promoted with subject specific vocabulary being identified in the planning that underpins the subject delivery across our curriculum.
- The Academy established a Pupil Premium Lead role established in June 2020 to manage and deliver provision for disadvantaged pupils to work alongside the Deputy Principal overseeing PP.
- All year groups spend one hour per week on group reading a set text which tackles SMSC. The Academy celebrates a love of reading through World Books Days, debating competitions, annual Spelling Bees, lunchtime topical chats and quizzes and book clubs for students of all ages. Older students in KS4 &5and Sixth Form read with and support weaker readers in KS3 as part of our student mentoring programme.
- Prior attainment at KS2 as well as subject specific criteria are used for identification of HAPs. A comprehensive range of strategies have been developed including; high quality schemes of learning which build-in stretch and challenge, intelligent seating plans, differentiated success criteria, skilful questioning, PiXL Think Hard strategies, pre and post school lessons in English and Maths. Enrichment for HAPs includes the Brilliant Club, philosophy session led by philosopher Professor Stephen Law, university visits and participation in university style workshops.
- PSHE is designed to address major issues of our context including life expectancy 6.4 years less than that of south Northamptonshire and the highest rates of pay day loan lending and the highest levels of personal debt in the UK. See ‘Developing Character’ PSHE details above.Students follow a pathway that focuses on relationships, financial literacy, SRE, personal health and wellbeing, British Values, careers aspirations and pathways to employment, internet safety and personal safeguarding delivered through the excellent Jigsaw programme.
- Students needing support with numeracy are identified in Yearly and in Year 7 are taught by a primary specialist together with a primary-trained HLTA to allow them to catch up with their peers. They follow a bespoke scheme of work to enable them to bridge the gaps in their knowledge and understanding which includes ‘Direct Instruction’.
- Maths interventions. The maths department deploys a range of interventions with students , for example provision of scientific calculators and revision guides, tutor time intervention with HLTA & Primary Trained teacher.HLTAs
- Through a partnership with an outstanding school serving a similar context to KSA, we have significantly modified our humanities curriculum in order to equip our students with the oracy and literacy skills they need to access the whole curriculum and underpin later academic success(See impact section)
- In response to our students being significantly below national average on entry in English the curriculum promotes a strong reading ethos rich in appropriate resources and utilising programmes to accelerate progress in reading. A range of clubs, events and mentoring further support this aspect of our curriculum.
- A primary trained colleague has been recruited to support nurture groups in literacy and numeracy.
- The Academy is creating a strong reading ethos whereby all students have access to a rich and vibrant resource of books used as part of the Accelerated Reader programme for years 7-9.
- The Academy follows a two-year KS3 and three-year KS4 model. Leaders and staff in the Academy believe that the greatest driver for social mobility is to ensure Students achieve a range of high-quality qualifications in line with their more advantaged peers. The model supports this by enhancing the transition into GCSE. The additional time is utilised to allow greater opportunities for deeper learning and knowledge acquisition; to hone subject specific skills and develop students’ the ability to work independently, revise and apply their knowledge and skills. This is particularly important since more than a quarter of 25% students on entry historically have had weaker than average literacy and numeracy KS2 outcomes with around 20% needing additional literacy support due to lower chronological reading ages.
- 38% of the current cohort are the first of their family to attend university. Partnerships with UoN, UoLeeds, and DMU assembly and seminar programme exposing students to the opportunities available when considering progressing to uni. Every student 1:1 meeting with UCAS coordinator to ensure that they are fully supported in their application. All students are taken to at least two UCAS exhibitions off site each year and Year 12 have a university week where all students get to experience university lectures delivered by lecturers throughout the week.
- Particular emphasis on Oracy; all students complete 16 week PiXL Oracy programme, with targeted students taking part in the ESB Debating qualification.
- In response to Covid, the academy facilitated access to a Resilience Programme run by Eton College.
- Y13 Academic mentors are used to ‘bridge’ learning gaps and are as a first line of intervention for targeted Year 12s.
- Utilise NCOP funding to ensure those students eligible for it, receive a wide variety of opportunities. Including: ESB Debating Qual; Podiatry Work Experience; Residential Medicine Work Experience; subject specific university lectures; paid transport to University Open Days and the Young Doctors programme.
- Disadvantaged students supported onto programmes tailored to enhance access onto specific courses. Currently student on the Medicine Leicester Enhanced Access Programme (MedLeap) and this summer, students have attend Cambridge and Bath University access programmes online.
- A Mental Health and Wellbeing Audit is currently being produced in conjunction with the University of Nottingham and a training programme recruiting student listening mentors has been launched in response to Covid, aptly supported by our Sixth form Counsellors.
- All Sixth form Bursary students provided with a laptop beginning of Y12. Online and in person subject lectures and course training is fully funded as are the course textbooks to all bursary.
- One student (LAC) currently accessing Vulnerable bursary. The bursary has been spent on course texts, laptop, internet access, trips, lunches and travel.
- All UCAS references include context specific information, invaluable to students in gaining contextual offers from universities including Leeds.
Learning is sequential – learning is carefully planned and sequenced to incrementally build long-term knowledge through spaced recall retrieval activities, developing cross-curricula schema, and preventing cognitive overload.
What: Learning is carefully planned and sequenced to incrementally build long-term knowledge through spaced recall retrieval activities, developing cross-curricula schema, and preventing cognitive overload
Why: By planning and sequencing we ensure that new knowledge and skills build on what has been taught before and help us to achieve our intent
All Key stages:
- Curriculum development time has been given to long term planning of the curriculum as shown through the Curriculum Maps for all subjects shown on our website.
- Staff training time has been and will continue to be given to allowing cross curricular collaboration so that staff are aware of when colleagues are delivering related content in another subject area.
- Students are supported to remember the long-term content they have been taught through every subject planning for revisiting, retrieving and interleaving both within and across subjects. These approaches support the integration of new knowledge into larger concepts.
- Medium term plans support staff to consider – Why this unit? – Why now? – What went before? – What comes after? – When will it be revisited?
Medium term plans support staff to consider the sequence of learning within a particular unit / MTP through the order of the Key Questions
- Staff are supported and developed in their pedagogy e.g. development of DNA Activities at the start of each lesson, CPD Nuggets such as ‘Remembering starts with forgetting’ (Forgetting Curve – Teach Like a Champion).
- We work with our main feeder Primary schools to understand the year 6 curriculum and to sequentially build on the skills, knowledge and cultural capital into year KS3
- See All Key stages above
- See All Key stages above