St. Joseph's Catholic College

Teaching and Learning

Teaching and Learning - Subjects and Organisation

The school operates a 2 week timetable of 50 lessons. In addition, students spend a 10 minute morning registration period with their tutor and have a 25 minute daily PSHE and citizenship session with their tutor or with another member of staff. In years 7, 8 and 9, all students study maths, English, science, RE, design technology, IT, modern foreign languages, art, drama, music and PE. In year 7, students also study a combined humanities course called ‘The World Around Us’ and then have separate lessons of history and geography in years 8 and 9.

All students currently choose three option subjects to study in year 10 and 11 alongside the core subjects of maths, English language, English literature, science (either combined science or physics, chemistry and biology) and RE, so students achieve 9 or 10 qualifications in year 11. In addition, the curriculum support department run an ‘alternative curriculum’ in one of the option times for pupils with special educational needs to be supported with their core subjects and complete an ASDAN qualification.

At the current time, our options process does not make the 'English Baccalaureate' group of GCSE qualifications compulsory. The value of studying either history, geography and at least one language is made clear to students and their parents during the options process, but the structure used does not make this a necessity.

In 2017 /18 a year 7 ‘transition group’ was introduced to support pupils who did not achieve the expected standards in literacy and numeracy at the end of year 6. These groups spend 21 of their 50 hours per fortnight in the same base classroom with a primary trained teacher, developing their literacy and numeracy skills through direct literacy and numeracy work as well as a series of projects. The impact of this new curriculum will be assessed for the first time mid-way through the academic year.

Further details about all these subjects can be found on each department’s web page and from the Year 9 - 10 Options Information document here.

Details of KS4 courses the exam boards and revision guide can be found here