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Notley High School & Braintree Sixth Form will prepare its students to lead a fulfilling life by:

  • building resilience;
  • developing aspirations;
  • nurturing talents;
  • promoting positive life choices;
  • and stimulating curiosity about the world around them.

Curriculum Statement

When students join in Year 7, they begin a five- or seven-year learning and development journey to academic success, with each year having its own distinct identity.

Learning Journey

The Notley High School & Braintree Sixth Form curriculum model conforms to the overarching BAT approach of providing a broad, balanced, and ambitious offer. This rationale aims to outline the intent and implementation of the curriculum. The impact is evaluated via pupil outcomes and a range of self-evaluation processes.

The aim of the curriculum is to not only prepare pupils for public examinations but also equip them with the life skills necessary to gain employment and be productive members of the community.

All lessons and activities should include a focus on the development of self-regulated learning and challenge pupils to ‘think hard’, encouraging metacognition and understanding rather than the simply the learning of knowledge, but developing ‘mastery’ of the subject that can be applied in differing situations.

As we emerge from the pandemic, the curriculum also makes specific provision for a targeted ‘catch-up intervention programme’.  A planned ‘remote learning education’ offer remains in place if needed.

Notley High School & Braintree Sixth Form Curriculum Design Principles

Our curriculum is the means by which we aim to deliver the Notley High School & Braintree Sixth Form mission statement ‘Learning Together, Succeeding Together’. We offer a carefully planned and thoughtfully prepared diet of learning to our young people based on developing a self-regulated learning, using metacognition skills, and creating self-regulated learners. As a result, students will develop positive attitudes to study, demonstrate excellent learning behaviours, embrace the joy of new experiences and the discovery of new concepts, and grow to be independent thinkers. All this will make them ready to progress to the next phase of their lives. Our curriculum aims not only to provide out students with the qualifications they will need to access further education and employment but also with the skills, qualities and confidence which will enable them to play their part in a rapidly changing world.

Curriculum Offer in Year 7, 8 & 9

The Key Stage 3 curriculum promotes a smooth transition from primary school and maintains and develops the level of challenge to avoid any ‘wasted years’ effect. Revised Year 7 to 8 Schemes of Learning ensure that students are acquiring the skills, knowledge and understanding required for GCSE, whilst retaining a broad and balanced curriculum for as long as possible. Subjects such as PE, the Arts and Technology do not become marginalised. The Year 9 curriculum is a ‘transition year’ between Key Stage 3 National Curriculum content and GCSE/Vocational courses. Some subjects deliver a modified curriculum which includes some GCSE content and skills, which allows students to develop an understanding of the demands of a GCSE course before making their option choices. This raises the level of challenge and expectation for all students. All subjects on the curriculum deliver elements of content or skills which can be revisited and reinforced during Year 10 and 11. Year 9 pupils receive dedicated CEAIG time in preparation for GCSE course choices as well as support in tutor time with regards to options.

Based on SATs, baseline tests including subject specific assessments and professional judgements pupils are placed into sets in Maths and Science. Allowing movement between sets if progress data indicates this would be the optimal approach for the individual pupil. All other subjects are taught in ‘mixed ability’ groups.

Curriculum Offer in Year 10 & 11

The majority of students study at least nine GCSE/Vocational courses and select a combination of subjects that fulfil the Progress 8 accountability measure. Students are encouraged to choose the EBacc options, but it is not compulsory to do so. The majority of students are expected to study either History, Geography, French, Spanish or Computer Science. A very small group of identified students complete a ‘Learning Support’ option, which means they do not always study sufficient subjects to fulfil the Progress 8 measure. The support offered in this option enhances their chances of obtaining higher grades in other courses.

All pupils study Physical Education for two hours per week, in line with Government recommendations as Personal Development Time (PDT) which includes RSE and PHSE components and provides a range of careers, information, advice and guidance (CEIAG) to prepare students for post-16 applications and future employment.

Students are taught in ‘ability’ groups based on progress data and FFT20 target setting for Science and Maths, and in Year 10 there are two more able English groups (one on either side of the timetable) with the remaining groups being mixed ability. Some students are invited to study Triple (Separate) Sciences based on their progress data at the end of Year 9.

Curriculum offer in Year 12 & 13

Approximately thirty Level 3 courses are on offer at Braintree Sixth Form. The majority of subjects studied are ‘A’ Level courses from Biology to Sociology, with a handful of vocational courses such as Criminology, Health and Social Care and Sport also offered. Most students will study three subjects, with a small number pursuing four where this supports their aspirations and interests. Curriculum time allocation for each subject is ten hours/fortnight of teaching.

The Extended Project Qualification is offered to students with a taught element each week  from the Spring of Year 12 and individual supervision while the projects are being completed. The tutorial and assembly programme is used to deliver personal development sessions including personal, social, health and relationships and sex education as well as preparing students for progression after the sixth form, providing careers information, advice and guidance, including UCAS applications. Cross-curricular activities, assemblies, visiting speakers and external visits support the programme. The programme includes monthly individual tutorials for students.

The enrichment programme normally offers students an extended programme of activities and opportunities to develop attributes and competencies to support students’ wellbeing, progression and to prepare for independent living

Any student who has not attained at least a 4 in Mathematics or English GCSE is given additional timetabled teaching to support their resit entry in the subject.

Enhanced Curriculum & Notley Achievement Award

The enhanced curriculum and Notley Achievement Award aims to offer a range of activities and opportunities to support the social and emotional well-being of pupils. The PDT Scheme of Learning, assembly and tutorial  programme, house events and extra-curricular offer contribute to the development of inter-personal skills, building resilience, and an awareness of the needs of others, in order to develop students’ social, moral, spiritual and cultural awareness and understanding.

The Notley Achievement Award combines a recognition of academic progress, good attendance and completion of a range of activities in and out of school. The scheme has four levels of achievement and is awarded to Year 7, 8, 9, 10 & 11 which are presented in the final half term of the year.

Careers guidance is delivered from Year 7 onwards via a number of cross-curricular activities, assemblies, visiting speakers and trips.

Should you wish to find out any further information, please contact the school office in the first instance:
Tel: 01376 556300