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Valentines High School

Curriculum Intent

What is our Curriculum Intent?

The aims of Valentines High School are to develop young people into well-rounded global citizens who are open-minded and happy whilst providing them with meaningful qualifications that will maximise opportunities once they leave school.

We will expose students to a large variety of experiences via a broad and balanced curriculum that promotes character building qualities (RACCER). 

 

Years 7-9

To achieve our vision Valentines High School offers a well-balanced three-year programme that entitles students to study a full range of subjects including English, Mathematics, Science, Design and Technology, Food and Nutrition, MFL, PE, Geography, History, Art, Music, Drama, PSHE and Computer Science. The National Curriculum is followed in all of these subjects. 

Throughout Key Stage Three we aim to ensure our students develop the required knowledge via a carefully sequenced design.  Pupils are provided with subject Learning Journeys which allow them to see the curriculum planning and map their learning over time.  We aim to ensure our students meet the highest expectations by training them to develop the skills required to be able to think like Geographers, Mathematicians, Artists, Scientists, and Historians.  Each Department has its own curriculum intent which reflects the subject-specific skills and the intention for teaching these via the curriculum.

The curriculum is designed to help pupils gain the skills, knowledge and understanding that they need to become well-rounded global citizens who are tolerant and happy.  All our pupils take part in a wide range of activities and experiences that will help open up doors later in life. In doing so, pupils learn to recognise their own worth, develop a sense of their own identity, and take their place in the community as well as respect and work with others. Pupils are encouraged to reflect on their experiences and to recognise how they are developing personally and socially, addressing the spiritual, social, moral and cultural issues that form an intrinsic part of growing up.

At VHS we know that pupils need to be taught the skills that enable them to become lifelong learners and therefore our curriculum at KS3 includes study skills.  These are taught across the three years and mapped on the Key Stage Learning Journey.

Years 10-11

VHS has a personalised curriculum model at Key Stage 4 that has proved popular with students.  Each year, following individual guidance interviews with senior members of staff, students choose from three possible pathways:

  • Pathway 1 – EBaac – History or Geography, MFL and 2 other options. Students may study both History and Geography.
  • Pathway 2 – History or Geography, free choice of three other options including MFL if available. Students may study both History and Geography.
  • Pathway 3 – Workskills and/or Learning Support (Learning Support continues to include a cooking qualification), one technical award where applicable and any 2 other options.

Students in all pathways can study all EBacc subjects if appropriate.

Each pupil is then provided with a Learning Journey for all of their subjects which mean they can see the ‘journey’ of which skills and knowledge they will develop over the two years in order to achieve the best possible academic success.

All our pupils take part in a wide range of activities and experiences that will help open up doors later in life.

To supplement this personalised curriculum, we also have a Personal Development Curriculum for KS4 which is designed to help pupils gain the skills, knowledge and understanding that they need to become well-rounded global citizens who are tolerant and happy. 

Years 12 - 13

VHS Sixth Form has a guided curriculum model at Key Stage 5 that has proved both popular and successful.  Students have to meet general and specific entry criteria to access our courses.  Through our summer enrolment programme, each applicant receives individual guidance with a senior member of staff to ensure that chosen courses are suited to their individuals needs and aspirations.  Students are placed on one of four pathways:

  • Pathway 1: Academic Pathway One. Students APS 7+ at GCSE studying the Sciences and Maths sometimes choosing four A-levels or three A levels + EPQ
  • Pathway 2: Academic Pathway Two: Students with APS 5+ at GCSE studying 3 A-levels
  • Pathway 3: BTEC Pathway Level 3: Students APS 4+ AT GCSE studying BTEC Business and ICT.
  • Pathway 4: GCSE Retake. Students retaking English, Maths and Science.

Students are able to access level 3 courses if they achieve our basic entry criteria of six 9 to 4 grades including English, Maths and Science. Students must also achieve the subject specific entry criteria as outlined in our entry criteria document.  Each pupil is then provided with a Learning Journey for all of their subjects which allows them to visualise the ‘Journey’ of which skills and knowledge they will develop over the two years in order to achieve the best possible academic success.  Thus, our curriculum is predominantly academic, in keeping with our local context and the aspirations of a majority of our students. For 90% of our students, this aspiration is University and our extra-curricular programme, including high fliers, brilliant club, Villiers Park, the EPQ, timetabled curriculum enrichment, whole school projects and a weeklong work experience placement, add value to UCAS applications whilst also ensuring our students are prepared for life beyond VHS.

  Learning Journeys  

In considering our Curriculum, we take into account:

  • The requirements of Universities
  • The job market in Redbridge, London and beyond
  • Student safety, welfare and PSHCE including an adaptive/reflective curriculum as a result of school and contextual concerns.
  • British Values and Equality
  • The development of character and skills that are important for life

*The Curriculum includes all aspects of Staff Directed Time with Students, including:

  • Assemblies

  • Extracurricular Clubs

  • Interventions

  • PSHCE

  • Structured Lessons

  • Trips

  • Tutor Time

  • Speakers

  • Workshops

  • Cultural and social capital opportunities

  • Pledges programme