West Hatch School Vision
We are a family dedicated to all our students excelling academically and personally in our school and beyond by seizing the opportunities we provide.
We unlock potential for all to thrive and open doors for all to achieve.
Overall Aim For our Curriculum
Everybody with responsibility for learning at West Hatch believe that our curriculum aims:
To develop confident, resilient and ambitious learners who are well prepared for their futures academically and personally.
All young people are entitled to a broad school curriculum but also one that is relevant to their learning needs. At West Hatch we place an emphasis on a progressive curriculum, focused on the learner and aimed to raise standards. We believe that students are more empowered to achieve within a curriculum model that emphasises specialist teaching and learning in discrete subject areas so our curriculum is mainly organised this way. Whilst preparing our students for the world of work is important, we see our curriculum as the totality of experiences which we plan for our students through their time in education; so our curriculum also includes elements that educate our young people towards a safe, rich and fulfilling life, and offers opportunities for them to develop through a diverse range of extra-curricular activities.
We have a strong community spirit led by our house pastoral system whereby children of all ages are expected to support each other and uphold our values. The curriculum offered at West Hatch continues to invest in all the key academic disciplines and reflect our school vision. It is indicative of the importance that we place on the development of the whole student, academic, physical and personal. Our broad curriculum in years 7 & 8, with electives for students from year 9 from a very wide range of disciplines, allow students as many pathways as possible to express themselves and excel. Supported by a committed body of teachers and support staff; an outstanding pastoral systems for the more vulnerable and less engaged; and by a varied choice of extracurricular and enrichment activities, students have that all important wide platform to step off in any direction from.
YEAR 7 and 8
Students study a wide range of academic and creative subjects, which are designed to give them a comprehensive range of experiences and a broad base of knowledge, and skills that they develop with specialist teachers in each subject (see below). In Year 7 & 8 students are placed into one of three groups – WEST, HATCH or CHIGWELL. In most cases there are 3 classes in each of these groups. One of these classes will comprise of the most able students and all other classes are mixed ability. Only Mathematics sets all groups according to ability. We also have an accelerated reader programme in place to support students that join us from primary school with a low reading age.
The 7 & 8 curriculum model is set out below:
In Year 9, students will study a core curriculum of English, Maths and Science in more depth.
Students also taking ownership over their learning as they mature academically is key to creating independent, aspirational, engaged learners. We think it’s important to sequence our curriculum so that there is flexibility and flow throughout. By the end of Year 8, the vast majority of our students are ready and keen to place some emphasis on the parts of our optional curriculum that they are most engaged with.
Students will begin by developing key disciplinary skills in Year 9 in three EBACC subjects – History, Geography and Spanish. Alongside this they will also study Computer Science and RS as compulsory elements of the year 9 curriculum. The intention of developing disciplinary skills and knowledge in key EBACC subjects is to give students more time to mature and develop experience of these core academic subjects before choosing which to continue with when they start their GCSE’s in year 10. The intention is to also support each student to gain academic confidence by experiencing learning in Year 9 through a limited number of electives which they can make from a wide choice of subjects. They also study a qualification in Financial Literacy which we feel is a key missing element of our National Curriculum but vital for students to learn about as part of their personal development.
The Year 9 curriculum model is set out below:
YEAR 10 & 11
At the end of Year 9 most students make two level 2 option choices to study examination subjects in Years 10 and 11. They choose from a wide offer of subjects based on their levels of progress to date. This is supported with high quality careers advice led by our full-time careers advisor. Recognising the pressure that students can sometimes feel, we also have a high-quality pastoral support system, including mentoring, tailored study and a qualified counselling service where there is a need. For more information on our option choices please visit the ‘options’ tab under the parent’s section of the website.
In Year 10, students are expected to begin full GCSE programmes of study. For the EBACC group of subjects, students will study the core subjects in more depth and the EBACC choices they made in Year 9 will either continue or they will continue with at least one EBACC subject and make other choices. We offer a complete free choice again so students can continue to deepen their learning in the same areas of interest from year 9 or they can choose to take a completely different path at GCSE in Year 10, if their interests have moved into other areas. The single limitation we make is that students who wish to study Economics must be studying for the higher GCSE mathematics qualification. Foundation students historically have struggled to access this course due to the more challenging mathematics content of Economics.
The Year 10 and 11 curriculum models are set out below:
YEAR 12 & 13
All the way through West Hatch, our curriculum emphasises the importance of subjects as individual disciplines. Our Heads of subjects are supported and given the freedom to develop a relevant curriculum within their area of specialism. All students are more empowered to achieve within a curriculum model that emphasises specialist teaching and learning in discrete subject areas. It prioritises and facilitates the best teaching of specific vocabulary, knowledge, skills and enrichment activities over the teaching of generic skills or topics and is rooted in rigorous research. This continues into the sixth form where students can specialise further by opting to study at least 3 A-levels or their equivalent for two years.
At KS5 students are able to follow a number of routes; A Levels, a mixture of A Level and BTEC courses or a fully vocational programme (equivalent to 3 A-levels). Each of these courses is at Level 3 and is part of a study programme which includes scheduled independent study, pastoral activities, tutor time, PSEC days as well as any extra-curricular activities students pursue. Students who did not achieve the base standard on English or Mathematics at GCSE are also expected to follow these courses again during Year 12. Finally, students wishing to challenge themselves further have the option of taking the Extended Project. We employ an experienced KS5 team who offer full support for careers advice, university applications, and apprenticeships as well as a dedicated study centre and common room.
To see more information on our curriculum offer at Key Stage 5 click here.
PERSONAL AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT
At West Hatch, the teaching of physical, social, emotional, health and citizenship education plays a key part in students overall development. Students therefore receive age appropriate, discreet lessons on these aspects during an extended period on each Monday. Aspects of religious education are also delivered within these periods. The school regularly holds drop down days for each year group which focus on specific age related aspects such as driving education in Year 11 and the Sixth From and Sex Education at KS3.
In addition to the formal curriculum students are offered a wide range of extra-curricular opportunities which include the Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award and many leadership opportunities. We look for students to commit to a broad range of activities to support their development as a well-rounded individual.
The specific approach of each subject discipline also offers opportunities for students to develop life skills and learn more about the world the live in. We capture these as a set of basic platforms which we recognise as key to a student being able to thrive.
Our basic platform means providing our students with:
• the ability to read with meaning to enable access to the vast library of collected knowledge;
• introduce a basic understanding of the language of the universe (Mathematics)
• how the universe and life works (Science, Economics)
• how our physical earth works and how we impact it (Geography)
• how we struggled to become what we are (History)
• how society works (Social Sciences, Business Studies)
• how we experience existence (The Arts)
• how we should Live (PSEC, RS, Ethics)
• how we use our basic tools (Technology)
• how we look after ourselves (PE & Financial Literacy)
• and those close to us (Food and textiles)
By the time our students complete their education here we expect them to be:
Thoughtful, responsible citizens, ready to contribute positively to their community
• Good listeners and communicators
• Flexible and able to respond to new opportunities
• Independent thinkers and lifelong learners
• Honest, reliable and dependable
• Able to accept and handle responsibility
• Able to work with minimum supervision
• Able to solve personal and work problems themselves
If you require more information regarding the curriculum please contact the school on firstname.lastname@example.org
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The following academic policies can be found in the 'School Policies' section of our website.