Which subjects do all students study?
The next three years will be an important period in your child's life and will help determine their future education and career. Many students will use their Key Stage 4 study as a platform for Post 16 courses at Ken Stimpson Academy. Key Stage 4 work offers an opportunity for a fresh start, although you will notice progression in most subjects from the work covered in Years 7 and 8.
All students will study the following core curriculum
- English Language/ English Literature (2 GCSEs)
- Science (2 GCSEs)
- Mathematics (1 GCSE)
- Core PE (2 Lessons)
- Personal Development (Careers, PSHE, Religious Studies - 1 Lesson)
In addition, Citizenship, Careers, Enterprise and Work-related Learning, Information, Advice and Guidance will be delivered via integration into PSHE, Tutor Time and curriculum days.
What is the English Baccalaureate (EBacc)?
The EBacc is not a qualification in its own right, but is a combination of GCSE subjects, including a language, that offers an important range of knowledge and skills to young people. The EBacc is seen as the ‘gold standard’ curriculum which looks to future proof the prospects of students, giving access to a full range of employment options and a broad knowledge that employers are looking for.
The EBacc is made up of the subjects which are considered essential to many degrees and is also recommended by Britain’s most prestigious universities. A study by the University College London’s Institute of Education shows that studying subjects in the EBacc provides students with greater opportunities in further education. The Sutton Trust’s research reveals that studying the EBacc can help improve students performance in English and Maths.
A student achieves the EBacc if they have gained a GCSE grade 5 or above in:
- English Language and English Literature
- Combined Science, or two of the three subjects which make up Triple Science
- Geography or History
- A Language (students will study Italian at Ken Stimpson)
Therefore, students must ensure they select Italian and Geography or Italian and History for their options if they want to work towards achieving the EBacc.
Pathways Courses and Blocking
Students need to select 4 different options - one of these should be a green label (EBacc) subject from either:
- Computer Science
Students will be asked to pick 1 green label subject and a back up green label subject. Their remaining 3 options should be picked in preference order and then a further 2 back-up options should be selected. The same option should not be selected multiple times.
Click on the options below to see more information about them
Assessment forms an important part of Key Stage 4 courses. It consists of work done throughout the course which counts towards your final examination grade. It may take the form of:
Remember that assessment is:
- spread over the length of the course
- a continuous indicator of how you are doing
- helpful to students who perform less well in examinations
- a good preparation for Post 16 work.
Most courses have an examination at the end of Year 11. Our policy is to enter students for all examinations in which we believe they may achieve a recognised grade.
We require that parents pay for entry for students who the school believes will be unlikely to achieve a recognised grade. The criteria for identifying these students are a poor level of attendance (less than 90% in the last calendar year) and the failure to complete coursework. If a 'parental entry' student does achieve a pass grade then the cost will be reimbursed by the school.
Across the weeks commencing 5th and 12th February, Year 8 students will attend a series of lessons that are ‘tasters’ of what to expect if they were to study that subject at Key Stage 4. By the end of the fortnight, all students will have sampled all of the option subjects available to them and be more informed in their decision making.
If necessary, students will be invited to a personal Pathways appointment, with a member of the Pastoral or Leadership Team. At this interview we will look at the choices the student has made and discuss alternatives if required i.e if a course hasn't received a large enough uptake or chosen courses clash on the final timetable.
The link to the online form will be sent to student’s school email address on Wednesday 28th February. Students are encouraged to complete the form in conjunction with their parents/carers. It is worth remembering that it will not be feasible to offer all choices to all students and therefore it is necessary to choose 2 reserve subjects. The deadline for submitting the form is Wednesday 6th March.