Year 9 Greater Depth & Increased Breadth

Our Curriculum

Year 9 Greater Depth & Increased Breadth

In recognition of the excellent progress made by pupils at The Westgate School throughout Years 7 and 8, we adapt our specified curriculum to offer pupils greater depth and increased breath in Year 9. Careful curriculum design allows us to increase the range of subjects from which pupils can choose: in Year 9 they will not begin their GCSE courses but instead, have the opportunity to learn beyond the requirements of the National Curriculum for Key Stage 3 and pursue the subject domains more deeply. Pupils will also have some choice of additional subjects, for example: sculpture, photography, Media Studies and a second Language choice. All pupils will continue with core subjects and, RE, Computing and Physical Education. Our most confident learners will also begin studying Latin as part of their core provision within English curriculum time.


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.


Pupils in Year 9 will all begin the GCSE Triple Science pathway. This is not optional; it forms part of the school’s core provision and means that pupils will still retain the opportunity to choose a full range of foundation subjects for their GCSE courses beginning in Year 10. 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

The Upper School Curriculum: a 5-year journey

Overview of the Curriculum

English

The English journey continues within which Latin is an additional option for some pupils. In Year 10 the GCSE syllabus begins with all pupils taking English Literature alongside English Language, leading to two separate GCSE grades. As Speaking and Listening is a core part of the English curriculum all-through, pupils will begin the NEA separate assessment at the end of Year 9.


Mathematics


The English journey continues within which Latin is an additional option for some pupils. In Year 10 the GCSE syllabus begins with all pupils taking English Literature alongside English Language, leading to two separate GCSE grades. As Speaking and Listening is a core part of the English curriculum all-through, pupils will begin the NEA separate assessment at the end of Year 9.


Science

We start Triple Science GCSE in Year 9. All pupils initially undertake the combined Science Trilogy (double science) in Years 9 and 10, alongside a small amount of Separate Science (triple science) content.

During Year 10, pupils are able to progress on to the Triple Science pathway where the three Sciences are examined separately. This will involve pupils studying extra content for each subject, and sitting longer exams, to provide the opportunity for pupils to gain separate qualifications in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Pupils who do not study Biology, Chemistry and Physics separately will continue with Combined Science Trilogy. This will lead to a result which is worth two GCSE grades. Both courses allow pupils to continue with A-level Science qualifications and beyond.


Languages

Pupils continue with their chosen language in Year 9– Spanish and/or French. More experienced learners have the opportunity to study Latin within the English curriculum and may also choose to take this as a GCSE option in Years 10 and 11. German is also offered from Year 9.


Foundation course


This part of the curriculum allows pupils to make choices according to their interests and strengths. We have included the following in this part of the curriculum:


1. History and/or Geography (pupils are also able to select History or Geography as part of their three additional choices)

2. Three additional choices (see Foundation pages within this booklet)

3. Religious Enquiry (see previous page for more information).


Please note that options are renewed annually to consider best provision for Year 9 and 10. This provision is in part, subject to pupil numbers.