All students learn and develop at different rates and in different ways. For this reason, students are taught in mixed age groups, based on the stage they are at rather than their age or school year. This allows them to progress at a pace which is right for them.
Some spend more time achieving a firm foundation of skills and knowledge. Meanwhile, the students who require greater challenge can head straight there without being held back. This results in confident students who can fulfill their potential.
Our Phases of Learning
Students enter these phases of learning when they are ready:
1. Stretch Phase
This phase is all about stretching the skills and understanding developed at primary school.
The learning is broadly based on the Key Stage 3 National Curriculum, but with a key focus on developing the learning habits, literacy skills and mathematics needed to be an outstanding learner. This stretch phase is the springboard to examination level study.
Subjects, which require a mastery of particular skills and concepts, are taught separately:
The following are taught via projects to develop a strong foundation of learning skills alongside subject knowledge:
- English with Humanities
- STEM - Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths
- CPE - Community, Philosophy and Ethics
- Creative and Performance - Art, Music, Dance and Drama
There is also:
- Physical Education
- An Extended Curriculum of sport and arts opportunities.
- Independent Study during school hours (no homework)
- Peripetetic musical instrument tuition.
For students who benefit from a more primary orientated curriculum, we have introduced a Pre-Stretch group led by a Primary teaching specialist.
2. Challenge Phase
This stage is equivalent to National Curriculum Key Stage 4 and starts when a student is ready. The level of study is personalised for each student and agreed in collaboration with parents.
There is still an emphasis on good learning habits, achieved through a project-based approach where possible. Students still participate weekly in Extended Curriculum, PE, CPE and Independent Study.
The majority of students work towards the government-recommended 'Progress 8' programme of study with at least 8 GCSEs from the following list:
- Core - English Language, English Literature, Mathematics, Spanish, Science, Humanities (History)
- Plus - A range of other subjects including separate Sciences, Art, Drama, Music, PE
Vocational subjects will be developed in collaboration with our partner, Duchy College, on occupation of our permanent site.
3. Extend Phase
Starting when we move to permanent premises, students will be able to study from a range of A level, vocational and GCSE courses. This phase is the launchpad to life beyond Route 39 Academy, whether higher education, training or work.