Our Curriculum at Hall Park Academy 

Our curriculum intent:

At the Hall Park Academy our core purpose is raising the achievement of all of our students. We have an ambitious curriculum that will:

  • Engage students with a broad and balanced range of opportunities that are carefully sequenced and structured to enable progression.
  • Equip students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in education and participate fully in the modern world.
  • Enrich students’ experiences through deep and challenging learning within and beyond the classroom.

We offer a curriculum that fosters enthusiasm for learning, recognises progress and achievement, and has been developed to prepare them for their years ahead by offering aspirational pathways within and beyond the academy.

As a school, our key intent is to ensure that all pupils, regardless of their individual circumstances, needs or starting points, are offered a broad and balanced curriculum which enables them to experience individual success and to feel included in all aspects of school life.

Our curriculum is planned to be progressive and cumulative and taught in a logical and sequential way in order to be effective and support all learners including those that are disadvantaged or have SEND.

 

Engage students with a broad and balanced range of opportunities that are carefully sequenced and structured to enable progression.

All students study the core subjects of English, mathematics and science, along with physical education (PE), religious studies and the wider curriculum covering personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE) and their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development (SMSC).

In addition to this core, a wide range of subjects is studied by all students, including humanities, languages, STEM and creative subjects.

As students progress through the academy they are guided towards appropriate pathways. The majority of our students will study a curriculum that is academic at its core involving the English Baccalaureate suite of subjects which includes a humanities subject and a modern foreign language. We believe this is appropriate and necessary in order to provide a balanced but challenging experience at Key Stage 4 for our students. For some students the full English Baccalaureate suite of subjects is not appropriate, however all of our students study at least one Baccalaureate subject.

In the Sixth Form, students can choose to study from a wide range of academic subjects at A-level and other vocational courses. Students’ curriculum in the Sixth Form also includes a number of enrichment lessons that complement their studies, along with the opportunity for a period of work experience.

Equip students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in education and participate fully in the modern world.

Students learning in each subject across each year is carefully planned and sequenced to enable the most effective development of knowledge and skills, allowing for progression from one unit of work to the next and each year to the next. Students will also experience a number of common themes within their subjects. Study skills, such as memory and recall, are developed throughout their time at school to enable them to know more and remember as they progress through each year. Revision strategies are an essential component in this that our students develop in readiness for assessments and exams.

Homework is set regularly to enhance students’ learning and to develop essential study skills. All homework tasks can be accessed through the Show My Homework website which also provides resources and guidance to students.

Students’ literacy and numeracy skills are essential to their success through school. We help students to develop their use of language through expert teaching that focuses on extending their ability to produce sophisticated writing. For students who arrive in Year 7 in need of extra support with literacy and numeracy, we include the Nurture programme in their curriculum to provide the extra time needed to develop these skills.

Students are given regular opportunities to expand and improve their reading, with a portion of each day in Years 7, 8 and 9 devoted to reading as part of the DEAR (Drop Everything and Read) programme. Students’ reading is developed and assessed in Years 7 and 8 through the Accelerated Reader programme. Alongside these opportunities there will be a range of other reading activities within students’ lessons in all subjects. Year 7 Catch-Up Premium funding is used to support Year 7 students who have not achieved the expected standard in reading by the end of Key Stage 2. Focused intervention is used to give these students the opportunity to attain the similar reading levels as their peers during their first year of secondary school, thereby ensuring they are ‘secondary ready’ to access our curriculum.

There is a careers programme designed specifically for each year group (Years 7-13) and delivered through lessons, assemblies and other special sessions. To give our students the best possible advice and guidance for their futures (covering the Gatsby benchmarks) we involve the school’s Careers and Aspirations Leader, the use of online learning tools for careers related guidance, and a range of outside speakers such as representatives from local universities and apprenticeships. A targeted group of our most able students participate in the Trust’s HE+ programme which provides opportunities and support for applications to top universities.

wider curriculum containing issues relating to personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE) and spiritual, moral, social and cultural development (SMSC) is delivered through assemblies and tutor time. This allows students to discuss, debate and explore these themes in more detail and be aware of how to seek any additional support they might require. Relationship, Sex and Education programme is delivered in an age-appropriate way.

Students’ character is developed throughout their time at the academy. The Hall Park Values of ‘Democracy’, ‘Responsibility’, ‘Independence’, ‘Value’ (tolerance and respect) and ‘Equality’ feature across our curriculum in lessons, tutor time and assemblies. These encourage students to develop and reflect on the qualities and characteristics that are an essential part of being a citizen in modern British society.

A collection of ten Pledges encourage students’ full participation in school life and must be carried out throughout their time at Hall Park Academy. They include participation in sports, performing arts, trips and working with the community. 
Student Leadership opportunities are available for students within each House, such as the House Captain role.

Enrich students’ experiences through deep and challenging learning within and beyond the classroom.

In addition to the curriculum opportunities already outlined there are a wide variety of extra-curricularopportunities that are available to all of our students. A range of trips are available to all students to enhance their learning in different subjects and offer different cultural experiences.

The Hall Park Extra programme promotes an extensive range of clubs and sports opportunities that are regularly available to students in both academic areas and sports. These are complemented by regular study opportunities that are available to all of our students before, during and after school, including library access and extra subject support.

In Year 10, students take part in a week of work experience with students embarking on a range of placements in local businesses and organisations. This opportunity provides them with valuable insights into workplaces and different career roles.

Throughout the school year, students are given opportunities that extend and enhance their studies in different subjects. In World Religions Week, our students are given the chance to listen to a wide selection of outside speakers and experience activities that develop their appreciation of different world religions. During Careers Week our students are able to hear first-hand from people who work in a range of different professions and careers. To develop our students’ understanding of political engagement, the whole school took part in a mock general election with each House playing the roles of political parties and every student having the chance to vote.

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme is available to our students at the levels of Bronze and Silver Award, with Gold Award becoming available in the future to post-16 students, in conjunction with other Sixth Forms across the Trust. These extensive programmes provide a wealth of opportunities to our students in physical activities, developing wider skills and helping others through volunteering.

Students across all year groups are actively involved in STEM activities, including an extra-curricular programme that allows students to work with children in our feeder primary schools.


How we implement our curriculum:

During Key Stage 3 (Years 7, 8 and 9) we offer our students a broad curriculum with an extensive range of experiences. They study in a wide range of subjects with full coverage of the National Curriculum. Students follow themes in their units of work, with these topics sequenced to enable progression from one unit to another and from one year to the next. Key Stage 3 provides the foundation for later achievement, helping to prepare students for the next stage through high quality teaching and learning experiences.

Towards the end of Key Stage 3, students make important subject choices as part of our Pathways process, to go alongside the core subjects they will study at Key Stage 4. This enables greater depth of study, enjoyment and motivation across all of their subjects, fully preparing them for their exams in GCSE and other qualifications. 

Key Stage 4 (Year 10 and 11) allows for the expansion of skills and knowledge to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing world. Their broad and balanced curriculum at Key Stage 4 builds on prior learning preparing them well for further education. Students have equality of access to academic, practical and vocational subjects, including those that make up the English Baccalaureate. Alongside their core subjects, students study four additional subjects that they opt for in Year 9. This enables greater depth of study, enjoyment and motivation across all of their subjects. Students are able to change subject choices during the initial part of this year to ensure that they are studying appropriate subjects at Key Stage 4.

Key Stage 5 (Year 12 and 13) provides our students with the specialised pathways necessary to provide access to higher education, training and employment. Students are taught by specialist staff in a wide range of subjects, including vocational areas.

 

The impact of our curriculum:

Our curriculum will be reviewed annually to ensure its appropriateness and effectiveness towards the fulfilment of our intent. This will allow students to continue to achieve to their full potential and gain the qualifications that will give them access to the next stage of their education and their future careers.


Our curriculum structure from September 2022

(showing lessons per week)

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Maths 3

English 4

Science 3

French/German 3*

History 1

Geography 2

Design & Technology 2

Physical Education 2

Art 1

Drama 1

Music 1

Religious Education 1

Computing 1

Year 8

Maths 3

English 4

Science 3

French/German 3*

History 2  

Geography 1

Design & Technology 2

Physical Education 2

Art 1

Drama 1

Music 1

Religious Education 1

Computing 1

Year 9

Maths 3

English 4

Science 3

French/German 3*

History 2  

Geography 1

Design & Technology 1

Physical Education 2

Art 1

Drama 1

Music 1

Religious Education 1

Computing 1

*Higher sets study both French and German in 3 periods (1 period from English)
Other sets study French or German in 2 periods

 

Key Stage 4

Year 10

Maths 4

English 4

Science 5

Subject choice* A 2.5

Subject choice* B 2.5

Subject choice* C 2.5

Subject choice* D 2.5

Religious Education 1

Physical Education 1

Year 11

Maths 4

English 5

Science 5

 

Subject choice* A 2.5

Subject choice* B 2.5

Subject choice* C 2.5

Subject choice* D 2.5

Physical Education 1

 

 

Each year group will study the wider curriculum of PSHE (personal, social, health and economic education), RHSE (relationships, health and sex education) and SMSC (spiritual, moral, social and cultural education) through tutor time, assemblies and other events.

* students’ guided pathway choices from: Art, Business, Computer Science,
Creative i-Media, Design & Technology, Drama, Engineering (BTEC), Food Preparation & Nutrition, French, German, Geography, Health and Social Care (BTEC), History, Music, Physical Education (GCSE), Triple Science


Post-16

All our Years 12 and 13 study for 20 hours per week. Students select 3 subjects to study along with enrichment activities.

 

 Lesson Time

Subject 1

5 hours per week

Subject 2

5 hours per week

Subject 3

5 hours per week

Enrichment session

1 hour per week

Work experience*

1 hour per week

Tutoring session

1 hour per week


*completed during a one or two-week placement during the summer of year 12

 

Our students can select from the following subjects:

Art A-Level

History A-Level

Biology A-Level

ICT Cambridge National

Business A-Level

Music A-Level

Chemistry A-Level

Philosophy A-Level

Computing A-Level

Physical Education A-Level

Design Technology A-Level

Physics A-Level

Drama A-Level

Psychology A-Level

French A-Level

Sociology A-Level

Geography A-Level

English and Maths GCSE Resit

Health and Social Care BTEC

 

Plus, enrichment activities, such as the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)