Our intent is that all our pupils will benefit from a curriculum that -
Is creative, practical, broad and balanced
Provides many opportunities for their own personal development
Prepares them as best we can to become independent and successful adults.
In Key Stage 3 (years 7, 8 and 9), pupils study art, dance, design technology - food, textiles and resistant materials, drama, English, geography, history, information and communication technology, maths, music, personal, social and health education, physical education, religious studies, science and Spanish.
In Key Stage 4 (years 10 and 11), pupils continue to study English, maths, personal, social and health education, physical education, religious studies and science. They also study careers and participate in work experience. Pupils choose from a wide range of ‘pathways’ options courses. These are regularly added to according to the needs, aspirations and ambitions of the pupils. Pathway options for Key Stage 4 include art and design, childcare, creative craft (in school and off-site), dance, digital media, drama, hair and beauty, home cooking/professional cookery, horticulture, humanities, information and communication technology, lifeskills, music, Spanish and sport and leisure.
In the Sixth Form (Key Stage 5 – years 12,13 and 14), students may also choose from a range of available ‘pathways’ options courses. Pathway options for Key Stage 5 include art and design, childcare, creative craft (in school and off-site), dance, digital media, drama, hair and beauty, home cooking/professional cookery, horticulture, humanities, information and communication technology, introduction to public services, lifeskills, music, Spanish and sport and leisure. Students follow a personalised programme in literacy and numeracy – depending on their previous level of study and qualifications already achieved. They also study careers, personal, social and health education and workskills. Sixth Form students have a personal development afternoon every week.
All pupils benefit from additional activities that enrich the curriculum and provide them with a wide range of learning experiences that enhance their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. There are a wide variety of after-school clubs, special whole school events and many off-site visits linked to the curriculum.
Pupils learn to self-regulate their emotions through being taught the ‘Zones of Regulation’. There is a focus on wellbeing and mindfulness practice is also taught. These aspects help to build pupils’ resilience and kindness towards others.
In Years 7 and 8, pupils are taught by their form tutor for English, humanities, maths and personal, social and health education. They visit subject specialist teachers for other lessons. This model helps pupils with the transition to secondary school.
From Year 9 upwards, pupils typically visit specialist teachers around the school for their lessons accompanied by the teaching assistants assigned to their class. We also run a nurture class for older pupils who would benefit from staying with one teacher for an increased number of lessons. Nurture class pupils still access their chosen pathways options courses.
Teachers are expected to use assessment to identify where pupils are in their learning and in order to plan what they need to learn next. Lessons must be well adapted ensuring that all pupils have the right level of appropriate challenge and are enabled to make the best progress possible. All subjects are led by a subject leader who is able to provide any subject-specific support necessary for non-specialist teachers.
Every subject studied leads to a recognised qualification. Pupils have the opportunity to study for Entry Level (1, 2, and 3), Level 1 and Level 2 external accreditations. They may study for GCSEs and vocational qualifications such as BTEC, NCFE, Gateway, Sports and Dance Leadership. Pupils may also complete London Academy of Dramatic Art (LAMDA) and Trinity College London (TCL) qualifications in drama, performance and music.
We aim for all pupils to leave Elm Court well-prepared for the next stage in their education, training or for moving onto employment. This applies not just in terms of formal qualifications but also through the personal development and degree of independence that they achieve.