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Year 10 and 11 - GCSE Courses

Our Curriculum

Year 10 and 11 – GCSE Courses and Options

At the end of Year 9, pupils will make a reduction in the number of subjects taken from Year 10 according to the individual’s strengths, interests and in consultation with parents and pupils. GCSE course will begin in Year 10 for all subjects with the exception of Triple Science – which all pupils will have begun in Year 9. Timetabled lessons for Personal Development also take place on a weekly basis in Year 10 in addition to that in which all pupils participate on Wednesday mornings. Half-termly 1:1 tutorials also continue throughout Years 10 and 11 to support every child with their individual needs as part of our commitment to a young person’s holistic development.

Curriculum choices are taken in accordance with the school’s high ambition for all young people to retain access to a broad and balanced offer as this entitlement provides a sound foundation for post-16 education, training and employment. Decisions regarding choices for GCSE subjects at the end of Year 9 are taken in partnership with parents and pupils and so far as the timetable allows. The school takes a varied approach to the organisation of teaching groups within subject areas and across year groups to ensure that the challenges of learning in different disciplines are met effectively. Pupils are not streamed across the curriculum and there is no fixed model for pupil grouping as experience has shown that an adaptive approach leads to the strongest outcomes for pupils in our school.

It is expected that all pupils will take at least one additional language to GCSE level with only a very few exceptions. The School expects that around 85% or more of pupils will be eligible for the EBACC qualifications at GCSE level and, for those very confident learners in maths we seek to offer Further Maths (resource and demand permitting). In addition to the specified curriculum, the school provides ample opportunities for pupils to pursue their interests in music, sport, art and other subject areas even if not taken as an examination subject. As a flagship school for Hampshire Music Service and the Duke of Edinburgh Award, we actively promote these opportunities alongside our own GoWest Arts provision and Community Challenge. Our thriving extra-curricular music and sports programmes in which a great majority of pupils participate are a key part of the all-through school provision, facilitating rich learning opportunities where younger and older pupils are working in partnership and learning together.

The Upper School curriculum: a 5-year journey

Overview of the Curriculum


The English journey continues. In Year 10 the GCSE syllabus begins with all pupils taking English Literature alongside English Language, leading to two separate GCSE grades.


Mathematics is taken by all pupils All pupils will gain a single GCSE qualification. Some more experienced learners will also have the opportunity to take Further Mathematics.


In Year 10, the curriculum is refined through either the Separate or, Combined Science pathways. Both courses allow pupils to continue with A-level Science qualifications and beyond in education, training or employment.

Foundation course

This part of the curriculum allows pupils to make choices according to their interests and strengths. At least one additional language is part of our core curriculum as it has a positive impact not only on cognitive development but as part of wider cultural awareness. Pupils who have started a second language (German, Latin, French or Spanish) may choose to continue with this as one of their choices. We expect that all pupils will take at least one subject in Humanities: Geography, History, RE.

Please note that option choices are reviewed regularly to reflect our high ambition for all pupils and to achieve the highest provision taking into account pupil preferences and resources.

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