Key Stage 3
Students in Years 7 and 8 follow a broad curriculum which seeks to build upon and extend the knowledge and skills developed at primary school.
Our experience of teaching the Mastery Pathway in Years 7 and 8 has allowed us to take the best elements of mastery (identifying learning gaps, and ensuring that students consolidate knowledge, skills and understanding before moving on to a new topic) and adapt them to suit our own needs.
All students also do PE, RE, Computing and PD&C (Personal Development and Careers). They study Technology subjects on a rotation basis, plus Art, Music, Drama and Dance.
This is a period of great change in education, and we review our curriculum annually to ensure that it best meets the needs of learners. It is clear that the new GCSEs which are being phased in on a rolling programme are much more demanding both in terms of content and difficulty. Therefore, we have taken the decision to allow students to focus on just one language in Key Stage 3 and introduce a degree of specialisation in Performing Arts in Year 8 too.
Key Stage 4
We seek to personalise the curriculum as early as possible for all students to enable them to pursue their interests. After an introduction to all subjects when students start the school, the options process begins in earnest in March of Year 8. Students receive extensive support for their choices, which includes a one-to-one interview with a member of the Senior Team for all students and their parents and carers.
The core curriculum of English, Maths, Science, PE and PD&C continues throughout Key Stage 4 (through to the end of Year 11). Alongside this, students study four options leading to GCSE and BTEC qualifications at the end of Year 11. There is an element of added personalisation for students for whom a full package of GCSE subjects is inappropriate.
Year 11 are on a different model, as we phase out an ambitious curriculum model introduced in 2011.
Key Stage 5
Many students stay with us beyond GCSE, completing their studies at Retford Post-16, a partnership between ourselves, Retford Oaks and the RNN Group (Rotherham and North Notts Group).
Our study programmes are mainly A Level based, with an increasing vocational offer provided by RNN. They reflect students' prior attainment, education and career goals. Combined with bespoke careers advice and guidance, they are focused on progression to the next stage in students' lives.
Students who did not achieve a grade 4 in either GCSE English or Maths have retake lessons built into their study programme.
Curriculum Model 2016-17
Year 7 Curriculum Booklet 2016-17Year 8 Curriculum Booklet 2016-17Year 9 Curriculum Booklet 2016-17Year 10 Curriculum Booklet 2016-17Year 11 Curriculum Booklet 2016-17
For further information about our curriculum, please contact the appropriate Head of Faculty (see contact us).