The School curriculum is broad and balanced recognising national guide-lines, and fulfils the requirements of the National Curriculum.
Considering the selective nature of the School there is an emphasis on academic excellence scholarship and the need for each pupil to secure the best achievable qualifications. It is our firm intention to lay secure foundations for progression into Further and Higher Education and we consider preparation for Sixth Form Advanced Level Study to be a key feature of out 11-16 education.
The School believes in encouraging pupils to "take ownership" of their own studies by following active and varied learning approaches.
Attention is given to the needs of the individual pupils. Consequently, our school curriculum encompasses the demands of the National Curriculum, but with enrichment appropriate to the needs of our selective intake.
FOR THE FIRST THREE YEARS
... in Key Stage 3 pupils follow a broad and balanced foundation course in unstreamed forms. Pupils entering the school all take a modern foreign language and from the second year (Year 8) all study Latin or another modern language (currently on offer French, German, or Spanish). A Combined Science course is taken in the first two years, after which Physics, Chemistry and Biology are studied separately. Other courses taken are in English, Drama, Mathematics, History, Geography, R.E., Music, Art (including Photography), Design Technology (including Food Technology), P.E., Information Technology and Learning Skills.
AT THE END OF YEAR 9
...as pupils move into Key Stage 4 they select their GCSE courses, both full and short courses. The GCSE subjects are taken at the end of year 11 and include a core of English, Mathematics, Science, a humanity, a language, RE, IT and a creative or practical subject. Students achieve 10 or more full GCSE qualifications in total. (Currently 20 subjects are offered) Carefully guided choice ensures that the courses taken are balanced, leaving open maximum options for the Sixth Form and careers. The vast majority of the intake normally moves on into the Sixth Form. All pupils in Yr 10 pursue a two week work placement and throughout the school a full programme of work related learning and guidance is directly supported by the Connexions Service.
IN THE SIXTH FORM
...a comprehensive range of subjects is offered at AS level in the Lower Sixth and A2 level in the Upper Sixth. Currently 30 subjects are offered). In addition to the subjects studied at GCSE, pupils may also choose from Economics, Business Studies, Geology, Classical Civilisation, Government & Politics, Philosophy, Psychology, Further Mathematics Media Studies and Theatre Studies. A flexible options scheme allows students to study science subjects, arts subjects or a wide range of combinations. In the Lower Sixth year four AS subjects are studied, with most students choosing to follow three A2 subjects in the Upper Sixth. In addition all Sixth Formers undertake non-specialist courses and additional studies within a General Studies framework. This leads to A2 level General Studies in the Upper Sixth. An increasing number of Sixth Formers also take Critical Thinking and Advanced Extension Awards.
The majority of the Sixth Form proceed to degree courses in universities, including Oxford and Cambridge. Sixth formers are encouraged to develop individual responsibility for their own learning, a skill crucial for those moving on to higher education and the world of work.
Exchange visits and study courses are regularly organised. Residential visits and outdoor pursuits are made available at some time to all pupils at KS3 and KS4.
The School is a trial site and Centre of Excellence for Research Machines and has a national reputation for the use of computers ICT across the curriculum. There is an extensive computer network, which can be accessed by pupils, teachers of all subjects and parents.
This open access computer service also allows pupils to make use of the large amount of reference material available on the network and via the Internet.
Private study plays an important part in encouraging and training students to work independently, and we ask parents to see that priority is given to the completion of prescribed work.
A planner/personal organiser (paid for by School Club) is supplied to each pupil, which includes spaces for a homework timetable and a weekly diary section in which private study work is to be included when set. Parents are asked to initial the entries at least once a week. Planners are checked regularly by Form Tutors and by senior staff. It is hoped that pupils will use these planners sensibly to help themselves to organise their studies in an efficient way. We also hope that parents will use these planners for communications with the School.
Personal & Social Education (PSE)
Five Ways is committed to, and fulfils its legal responsibility in promoting the personal and social development of each individual pupil. Provision is made for regular lessons. PSE and Citizenship is delivered by a combination of subject specialists and form tutors.
There is really no part of the school day or curriculum which does not have the potential to influence the personal and social development of the pupils and arguably it is the spirit and ethos of the school, its pupils and staff which has the greatest effect. There is a well equipped careers base which is available to all pupils Careers guidance forms part of the PSE programme for all years and there is opportunity for personal consultations both with our careers staff and the City Connexions Service.
Statutory Regulations etc.
Statutory regulations and Policies, Ofsted reports and schemes of work are available at the School.