Aims of the Curriculum
The curriculum provides all students with:
- academic rigour and challenge, reflecting the high aspirations that we have for every student.
- courses appropriate to their interests, strengths and career aspirations so that each of them can achieve and progress to their chosen next stage of education, training or employment.
- a broad and balanced set of subjects including, until the end of Year 9, Maths, English, Science, Computing, RE, PE, History, Geography, a Modern Foreign Language, Technology, Art and the Performing Arts and, in Years 10 and 11, an academic curriculum consisting of core subjects with the opportunity to specialise.
In Years 7 to 9, all students study the following: Maths, English, Science, Computing, RE, PE History, Geography, a Modern Foreign Language, currently Spanish and PSHE.
In Year 9 students have the opportunity to specialise in two creative subjects, the subjects offered are; Art, Drama, Music, Product Design, Food, Dance. There is also an alternative curriculum running for a small number of students who need additional support.
In Years 10 and 11, students study the following: Maths, English, Science, PE, RE/PSHE. Through GCSE option choices students choose a further four subjects to study, students are encouraged where appropriate to continue to study subjects that will allow them to achieve the EBACC qualification. Unless agreed on an individual basis all students must study at least one EBACC subject as one of their four choices, this is to help ensure they receive an academic and balanced curriculum.
The college offers a range of both academic and vocational qualifications in Years 10 and 11 to meet the individual needs of students. The introduction of technical awards has allowed the college to broaden the vocational pathway to better cater for the needs of students within college.
Subjects offered: History, Geography, German, Spanish, Art, Drama, Performing Arts Music, Product Design, Food, Dance, Graphics, Triple Science, Business, IT, Computing, Media, PE, RE. These qualifications may be either GCSE or Vocational. Additionally, there is an option for extra literacy and numeracy support in KS4.
All students in Years 7 to 9 follow an RE course for a minimum of one hour each week. RE content is then covered during PSHE in Years 10 and 11. Also, Year 10 and 11 students may choose to follow RE as a full GCSE qualification
Students in Years 7 to 9 follow a discrete computing qualification for 1 hour each week. In Years 10 to 11 all students are given the choice of undertaking a GCSE in Computing, Media or IT.
PSHE is taught to all year groups for 1 hour per week, throughout the year. This covers British Values, social moral and spiritual and cultural issues, as well as financial awareness and sex and relationship education. Year 11 has a clear focus on preparing students for the future.
All students in Years 7 to 11 take Physical Education for at least 2 hours per week. In Years 10 and 11 some students additionally choose to take BTEC PE or GCSE Dance.
All students in Years 7 to 11 receive 20 minutes a day of tutorial time in which a number of curriculum and current affair issues are covered including Rock Star Maths, independent reading, theme of the week and group discussion.
Links with Other Providers
The majority of students receive their education within the college; however, the college does have close links with two local providers; Forest Schools and Skillsforce. Selected Year 7 students access a nurture opportunity at Forest Schools on a rota basis. This is delivered at the college and at local outdoor approved sites. Skillsforce provides an alternative, 2-day per week, character and resilience programme designed to re-engage students with education. Springwell has two places per year available on this 12 place course, the remainder filled by students from neighbouring schools Netherthorpe, The Bolsover School and Heritage High School.
The college operates a 25 lesson per week, two-week timetable, with all lessons being either 1 hour or 55 minutes in duration. However, a 25 lesson week does not give an appropriate degree of flexibility in terms of the curriculum. Therefore, a two week timetable gives the college an increased level of timetable flexibility, whilst also facilitating Key Stage 4 options subjects each having 10% curriculum time.