Key Stage 4
Students formally begin their GCSE and non-GCSE courses in core subjects at the beginning of Year 9, although in essence, have been preparing since the beginning of Year 7. In non-core subjects, the GCSE curriculum is comprised of skills acquisition, as opposed to the knowledge content on which they will be examined at the end of Year 11.
In Years 10 and 11, students are able to take up to ten subjects covering a wide variety of areas. Their pathway will depend on how well they have progressed through Key Stage 3 and what they want to prepare themselves for in terms of their future study. Students begin their Religious Education GCSE in Year 8 and are examined at the end of Year 10.
They are guided through this process in Year 9 when they undertake the pathway process and this ensures that they are on appropriate courses in the right subjects for the future. The Year 10 and 11 pathway is comprised of:
Essential Learning: a core of English, Maths, Science, PE (non-examined) and RE.
Additional Learning: students may choose 3 courses from a wide range of GCSEs. BTECs or V-Certs..
All students have aspirational target grades for each course they follow and we regularly assess student progress and report this to parents three times a year. Parents can also have 1:1 conversations with members of staff at different points during the year at our parent consultation events. For further information, please see the parents' section of the website.
For detailed information and guidance about the Key Stage 4 curriculum and Pathways, please click here to download the Pathways booklet. Parents and carers will get an updated copy of this in January of each year as we begin to discuss Key Stage 4 Pathways with students.
A range of enrichment courses, designed to enhance and complement the examined subjects, is also available and many students will take at least one enrichment course during KS4.
Essential Learning courses for everyone at Key Stage 4
English Language and English Literature GCSE
Science (Combined or Triple Sciences)
Religious Education GCSE (including PSHE & Citizenship)
PSHE and Citizenship also delivered through tutor time
Additional Learning courses (3 options available*)
|Art and Design GCSE||Business GCSE|
|Computing GCSE||Dance BTEC||Drama GCSE|
|French GCSE||Geography GCSE||German GCSE|
|Health and Social Care GCSE||History GCSE||ICT Cam Nats|
|Music GCSE||Hospitality & Catering BTEC||Sport BTEC|
|Product Design GCSE||Sociology GCSE|
|Core Skills||Textiles GCSE|
|Spanish GCSE||Triple Science|
Click on the link here for details of Specialist Engineering pathway at Abbeywood (BTEA) for Olympus students in Y10-13