Overview

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The school curriculum is offered within the requirements of the National Curriculum and the agreed syllabus for Religious Education. In addition, the school is mindful of the tenets of the Church of England, the recommendations of the Oxford Diocesan Board of Education and the policies of the Buckinghamshire Education Authority, when implementing its curriculum plans.

During Key Stage 3 all students follow a common course of general education along the lines of the National Curriculum. Our two year Key Stage 3 is an opportunity for our students to deepen their understanding and hone their skills. For this reason we use the language of Mastery. A fuller explanation of what this is and a detailed breakdown of the Mastery Bands can be found in our Key Stage 3 Curriculum Booklet.

Citizenship and PSHE courses are taught by an experienced team of staff who have a particular interest and expertise in this area of the curriculum. During CP lessons students have the opportunity to understand about how to become happy and productive members of society and about the rule of law and democracy. They also learn about well-being and positive mental health, along with information relating to adolescent development. Students are shown how to become successful learners and are given age-related careers information, advice and guidance.

In Key Stage 4 all students study English Language and English Literature, Mathematics, Science, ICT and a full GCSE in Religious Studies. Students are required to follow up to four additional courses leading to GCSE examinations. Some pupils are offered the opportunity to follow vocational courses combined with work-based learning arrangements. These are arranged in liaison with the school’s Careers and Guidance Advisor and are closely monitored by senior staff. Some students choose, or are guided to take, additional lessons to support their English and Maths.

Students are taught in sets according to ability in Mathematics, Modern Languages and Science at Key Stage 4, but otherwise they are taught in mixed ability groups. All students’ progress is closely monitored. The school has a dedicated team of Learning Support Assistants led by an experienced SENDCo. Throughout the year staff offer a wide range of enrichment classes, revision classes and extra-curricular opportunities.

In the Sixth Form, the range of academic Applied AS and A2 courses is broad. In addition to traditional courses many students choose to study Finance or BTEC Music.

Year 12 students also follow an Extension Studies Programme covering study skills, careers guidance, health and wellbeing, and contemporary issues. Wednesday afternoons are dedicated to extra-curricular activities. Year 12 students are able to choose from: Sport, Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise, Community Service, Rotary Speaking and various charity action groups. All follow at least one option, but many complete two or even three of the activities on offer.

Waddesdon Church of England School offers a broad curriculum within the school day and in extra-curricular activities. It maintains high standards and expectations for all students. The school culture and ethos nurtures students to be committed to their learning and to have pride in their achievements. The curriculum supports the aspirational culture that underpins the success of the school.