As pupils move into the Senior School so the focus on academic achievement grows. House events and competitions continue to play a huge part of school life and co-curricular opportunities increase with plenty of sport on the agenda. Pupils have the opportunity to broaden their interests whilst still benefiting from the small class sizes.
Years 7 and 8 form a solid grounding for a more mature approach to learning and studying before entering Year 9 where pupils have the opportunity to choose certain subjects from a pre-GCSE option list.
The Key Stage 3 curriculum in the Senior School remains broad and blends the best traditional schooling with the latest curriculum initiatives. Science is separated into Biology, Chemistry and Physics, and Latin is introduced to complement French and Spanish.
Key Stage 3 Awards
The Key Stage 3 Award offers a range of very exciting and engaging opportunities for each and every pupil within Years 7, 8 and 9. It is the culmination of nearly twelve months of planning and development, with contributions from every subject and teacher in Senior School alongside a range of whole school activities and co-curricular clubs. Designed to encourage every pupil to aim for excellence, the Award endeavours to provide opportunities for pupils to develop their skills as learners as well as be active participants in the wider school community.
The Award is split into three main sections – Bronze, Silver and Gold:
BRONZE AWARD – 5 activity credits + 1 book
SILVER AWARD – 6 activity credits + 3 books
GOLD AWARD – 7 activity credits + 5 books
Each year group has been allocated specific subjects within which they may work as part of the Award. Alongside these ‘Academic Achievement’ subjects, pupils will be encouraged to showcase their skills and abilities in common areas of focus titled: Creative Performance, Leadership and Independence, Social and Personal skills, Physical Endurance, Citizenship and our Community, Peer Mentoring and Coaching, and Digital Competency. There is also a reading list (Wider Reader) from which pupils are required to read a minimum number of set titles. Pupils are not expected to complete every activity available, but choose from those that interest them and that they can complete to a high enough standard to meet the given success criteria. Guidance on all the activities and common areas of focus can be found in the Key Stage 3 Award Logbook. Form tutors and subject teachers will be guiding each pupil through their Award.
The Award also recognises that learning experiences and success extends beyond the classroom and, for certain categories, achievement and participation in external co-curricular activities may be submitted. Participation in an official sponsored event, a club or society that requires regular attendance and played fixtures or an activity where international honours are gained to name just a few. For our creative and musically talent pupils, taking part in a stage performance or official musical event may also be submitted as evidence.
Tasks have been created for each of the nine categories and pupils have until the May half-term to gather their evidence and submit it for their Award. Every pupil will be encourage to work through to a minimum of Bronze Award and record their achievements in their logbook. For those pupils who wish to set the bar even higher, a Platinum Award is available. Here, the key word is exceptional and pupils wishing to gain the Platinum Award will have already secured the Gold Award and then complete two of the three possible extension activities.
At the end of this academic year, you will be invited to a presentation evening to acknowledge the pupil’s achievements and success within the Award; here successful pupils will be given formal recognition for their hard work and efforts. Showcased at the presentation evening will be a range of work completed through the year by the pupils.
I wish every pupil the best of luck!
Head of Key Stage 3