Curriculum

Our Curriculum Intent

Our school purpose is to prepare our students to live as independently as possible.

We want all of our students;

  • to communicate confidently and effectively.
  • to make decisions for themselves.
  • to make a positive contribution to our local community.
  • to make safe, healthy choices for their physical and mental well-being.
  • to maintain close, supportive relationships.
  • to develop their core skills in Literacy and Numeracy so that they can access wider learning opportunities.
  • to develop a sense of wonder about the world around them as they engage in a broad curriculum.
  • to demonstrate individual success and progress in academic learning.

We will use the National Curriculum to challenge and stretch our students but we will also adapt our curriculum plans to ensure that we meet our students’ individual needs.

We will achieve this by ensuring that we build positive relationships with our students and their families. We believe that this is the foundation of all learning.

 

Our school values are;

  • We expect everyone to show kindness at all times
  • We expect everyone to engage in learning
  • We expect everyone to show courage and resilience

Our curriculum planning reflects our focus on these key values.

Our school is part of the Commando Joe’s community. All of our students have regular opportunities to engage in Commando Joe Challenges. These practical activities require students to work together to find solutions to problems. All of these challenges are based on the RESPECT character traits;

Resilience
Empathy
Self Aware
Positivity
Excellence
Communication
Teamwork.

We aim to develop these character traits across the curriculum, particularly within PSHE lessons. They will help our students to overcome personal challenges they will face in the future.

 

Curriculum Implementation

How we meet our student’s additional needs

We are a special school and all of our students have an EHCP that outlines their additional needs. All of our students are taught in small groups (usually 10-12 students) for all their subjects.

In Key Stage 3 and Complex Needs classes, the teacher is supported by a Class Teaching Assistant – who stays with the class throughout the week. In our 14-19 areas of the school, students move to different classrooms for different lessons. This means that they may work with different staff throughout the week, but they start and end each day in their form room with their form tutor and Class Teaching Assistant.

The teacher plans the learning for each of their students, based on the school’s curriculum but individualised to accommodate each student’s needs. They also work towards the student’s Small Steps of Progress which are linked to their EHCP outcomes.

Teachers make use of a range of teaching approaches, including opportunities for practical learning and activities designed to consolidate learning. Regular assessments mean that staff quickly identify when a student is failing to make the expected levels of progress and make adjustments to their teaching.

Each student’s EHCP is reviewed every year in the Annual Review meeting. Parents / carers also receive a Mid-Year Report and an End of Year Report that details progress across the curriculum. We hold Parents’/Carers’ Evenings for each year group of students, but encourage our families to contact us whenever they have any questions. We also hold Transition Support Evenings for students and their parents as they prepare to leave us at the end of Year 11 or within their post 16 (years 12-14.) Each of these formal occasions allow parents / carers to contribute to the individual plans for supporting their child.

 The school’s Interventions Team co-ordinates additional support from other agencies for our students and their families. Staff from the school’s Interventions Team liaise closely with our team of school nurses and our local providers for speech and language therapy and occupational therapy. They also work closely with staff from social care and CAMHs (Child and Adolescent Mental Health services.) Sometimes, staff from these agencies will come into school and work directly with students. At other times, they will give advice and guidance to school staff. 

For example, some of our students have been assessed as having additional sensory needs. Our attached occupational therapist has reviewed these assessments and suggested a range of strategies to be used in the classroom on a daily basis. Staff from the Interventions Team will make sure that the classroom staff understand the strategies and have the right equipment. They will check that strategies are being used regularly and will then liaise with the occupational therapist to review progress and adjust the plan if needed.

 

How our curriculum is organised

We have three curriculum routes for students in Key stage 3 and Key stage 4;

  • Our Independence Curriculum
  • Our Communication Curriculum
  • Our Complex Needs Curriculum

 

As part of our admission processes, we review the information that we’ve received about each student. This helps us to decide which is the best curriculum pathway for each student.

As we get to know our students for ourselves and complete our own assessments, sometimes we move a student to a different curriculum pathway. Parents and carers are always involved in this decision.

In our post-16 department, we have two curriculum routes;

  • Our Pathways Curriculum
  • Our Life Skills Curriculum

 

Independence Curriculum in KS3 and KS4.

In Key Stage 3 (years 7-9), there are two classes in our independence curriculum for each year;

7Green and 7Orange

8Green and 8Orange

9Green and 9Orange

These groups follow a primary style curriculum and are taught by the same teacher and teaching assistant for most of the week. The curriculum focus for these groups is on encouraging students to operate independently as they learn new skills.

Their timetable includes daily sessions of Maths and English. The tutor times at the start and end of each day have a PSHCE focus. These Key stage 3 groups access History and Geography through different topics. They receive specialist teaching in PE and Science.

In Key stage 4 (years 10 and 11), our Independence groups have a timetable that includes daily English and Maths lessons. Tutor times at the start and end of each day have a PSHE focus. These groups access accreditations (including GCSEs) in English, Maths, Science, IT. They complete discrete PSHE/Careers lessons and core PE sessions each week. They also have two option choices (Food/Land Studies and Art/Sport.)

KS4 Independence Curriculum – Core subjects (weekly lessons)
English 4 Maths 4
Science 3 IT 3
PSHE/Careers 3 Core PE 2

 

KS4 Independence Curriculum – Option subjects (weekly lessons)
Option 1 Food Land Studies 2
Option 2 Art Sport 2

 

Communication Curriculum in KS3 and KS4

There is one Communication class in each year group in Key stage 3. These groups also follow a primary style curriculum and are taught by the same teacher and teaching assistant for most of the week.

The curriculum focus for these groups is on developing their communication skills as the foundation for all other learning. These groups follow a similar curriculum to the Independence groups but plans are differentiated to allow students more time to consolidate their learning. These groups also benefit from additional support from speech and language therapists. This ensures that all classroom learning is focused on developing students’ ability to communicate independently.

In Key stage 4, there is one communication group for each year group. These groups have an adapted timetable that focuses on the development of English and Maths skills with the same teacher throughout the week. Students in these groups access appropriate accreditations in a range of subjects.

KS4 Communication (weekly lessons)
English 4 Maths 4
Science 2 IT 2
PSHE/Careers 5 Core PE 2
Food 2 Land Studies 2
Art 2  

 

Pathways Curriculum in KS5

 

Our Pathways Curriculum in KS5 is designed for those students who are aiming to study at a local college. Students on this Pathway curriculum continue to improve their skills in Maths and English, along with core lessons in IT, PE and PSHE/Careers. They also start and end each school day in their form room with their form tutor.

The rest of their curriculum provides them with taster qualifications in a range of subjects. This helps them to decide what they should study at college.

We are aiming to provide more opportunities for work experience and links to local college as well.

KS5 Pathways Curriculum (weekly lessons)
English 3 Maths 3
PSHE/Careers 5 IT 2
Core PE 2 Animal Care 2
Hospitality 2 Land Studies 2
Healthy Living & Fitness 2 Art 2

 

Skills for Life Curriculum in KS5

 

Students on our Skills for Life Curriculum in KS5 are based with the same tutor group for most of their week. We think this helps them to develop their self-confidence and allows us to individualise support for their needs.

They access specialist English and Maths teaching and are grouped according to ability for these lessons.

These groups of students access core lessons in IT and PE and have extra lessons in PSHE/Careers. The rest of their curriculum is able to be individualised and adapted according to need and interests. KS5 staff carefully monitor the balance of subjects offered to students as they work towards achieving Unit Award Accreditations. These activities are grouped under the headings of;

  • Independent Living
  • Friends and the Community
  • Good Health
  • Employment and Careers

These activities often include some aspects of the Pathways Curriculum taster subjects (Animal Care, Hospitality, Land Studies, Healthy Living & Fitness and Art.)

KS5 Pathways Curriculum (weekly lessons)
English 3 Maths 3
PSHE/Careers 5 IT 2
Core PE 2  
Unit Awards – individualised programmes. 10

 

Curriculum for students with Complex Needs

We have two classes of students with more Complex Needs. Their curriculum is even more individualised than for our other groups and could be described as a semi-formal curriculum. For some students this means a focus on experiential learning and consolidating small steps of progress. For other students in these groups, working towards National Curriculum subjects is appropriate.

These groups have additional staffing allocated to them and are based in classrooms with their own toilets and playground spaces.

 

Assessment

All of our assessments are based on comparing our students’ progress against national expectations. For example, our reports match students’ current learning with national expectations for Year 1 / 2/ 3 / 4 students. Our experience suggests that this helps parents and external agencies to understand where students are and to plan effectively for their next steps.

Teachers use a centralised electronic system to record their assessments. Teachers add information (and evidence) to this system throughout the year and this information is collated for the Mid-Year reports and the End of Year reports.

Teachers in KS4 and KS5 will also assess predicted grades for accreditations and include these in the reports to parents.

 

Curriculum Impact

We measure the impact of our curriculum by;

  • Continually gathering assessment information about student progress,
  • Collating assessments for our Mid-year reports and End of year reports,
  • Carefully reviewing these reports for evidence of students making good progress or of needing additional interventions.

We have recently made a number of changes to our curriculum model and it is not yet possible to identify all of the impact. However, our data shows us that students are making good progress across the curriculum and students in Year 11 and KS5 are achieving a wide range of accreditation.

We also view the number of students achieving their EHCP outcomes as part of the impact of our curriculum.

Ultimately, we will know whether our curriculum has had its planned impact by gathering information about our students’ ability to live as independently as possible in their adult lives.

For further information please click links below. Queries regarding curriculum can be addressed to Dr Debbie Bailey, Headteacher via office@queenscroft.staffs.sch.uk.

 

Maths

Careers

Careers

Supporting our students in the next stages of their education, training, or employment whilst preparing for adulthood is an important part of our focus at Queen’s Croft.

Queen’s Croft Careers Leader
Jane Bradbury – email: j.bradbury@queenscroft.staffs.sch.uk or telephone 01543 227245 to request a call back

Governor with responsibility for Careers – Marcus Simmons – m.simmons@queenscroft.staffs.sch.uk

Careersmart | Careers and job market information

Careersmart is an independent and impartial careers website established by Prospect union for professionals. It aims for individuals to be informed and confident in their career choices and decisions.

Supported Living Provision

Success at School: Careers advice for schools and students

Career advice for schools, colleges and students aged 13-19. Search jobs, advice & find out about employers, work experience, courses, career choices, apprenticeships and university.
successatschool.org

Flyer - Preparation for Adulthood

Provider Access Policy

Careers in the Classroom

Teachers at Queen’s Croft strive to bring their subject to life and linking careers to learning in the classrooms.

We do this by:

  • Engaging with  external providers to support lessons
  • Demonstrating and guiding transferable skills such as communication skills.
  • Guiding career aspirations by supporting pupils with subjects that will help form their chosen career.
  • Using real life scenarios to familiarise students with a variety of jobs and careers
  • Displays around school showing different Career options.

BBC Bitesize Careers page has more about information about careers linked to school subjects, click here to visit their webpage.

The National Careers Service has more information about your favourite subjects and the careers these can link to.  Use the link to explore the possible career pathways that you could move onto after Queen’s Croft, you can also see how much you could earn and what the role might look like!

Use the posters below to see which careers some of your favourite subjects could lead to! – please note that we do not offer all the subjects shown.

 

Exams

During a young person’s time here at Queen’s Croft, they may be entered for various formal qualifications or awards to support their journey in to adulthood.

There are many different levels and types of qualification that we are able access to ensure the young person has the most appropriate outcome from their education and journey onwards.

These qualifications/awards take place at different times of the year, with GCSE exams always taking place in the summer term.

Students (candidates) will receive a Statement of Entry that will show the subjects and level of qualification/award they have been entered for.

Exam Officer: Mr Daniel Rogers

Exam Administrator: Mrs Alison Hunt

Head of Centre: Dr Debbie Bailey

Outstanding Results!

We are incredibly proud of our amazing students who have overcome so many obstacles. Our students have achieved so much in what has been a very difficult and challenging few years, they have shown great tenacity and resilience.

Our results this year have been an outstanding achievement for our pupils and will give them a firm foundation on which to build their futures.

100% of our Y11 who were entered for a GCSE qualification have achieved the qualification.

91% of our Y11 students have achieved a nationally recognised qualification in Maths.

88% of our Y11 students have achieved a nationally recognised qualification in English.

Some pupils have exceeded their predicted grade, with achievements of Grade 8 in Art and Grade 5 in Biology.

These achievements are in addition to the many additional nationally recognised qualifications that our pupils have been able to access.

Headteacher Dr Debbie Bailey commented “All of our students have additional needs and the staff team work incredibly hard to help them to overcome them. We work closely with parents and families to individualise support to students. We are thrilled to be celebrating success for so many student’s today. We are confident that this will give them a firm foundation on which to build their futures”

Parent comments include

“It has been an horrendous tome over the last few years. However, he has got his head down and got on with it. With the support from school we are very proud of what he has achieved”

“We are really, really pleased with what they have achieved and exceeds what we hoped for”

Examination Policies

Link to School Policies for Examinations

Instructions for Candidates

This is a link to an animation that shows the regulations for candidates sitting examinations.

It is important that you familiarise yourself with the expectations to avoid malpractice.

Your teachers will also speak with you about your expected conduct in exam conditions.

Dealing With Exam Stress

It is normal to feel a bit worried about exams, especially if you’re under pressure from school or family.

Exam stress can cause you to feel anxious or depressed, and this might affect your sleeping or eating habits.

Watch for signs of stress

Children and young people who are stressed may:

  • worry a lot
  • feel tense
  • have headaches and stomach pains
  • not sleep well
  • be irritable
  • lose interest in food or eat more than normal
  • not enjoy activities they previously enjoyed
  • be negative and have a low mood
  • feel hopeless about the future

If you are feeling this way, please speak to your parents/carers, your class teachers or any other trusted adults. You may also find the links below useful:

Young Minds
NHS – Exam Stress 
Mentally Healthy Schools
Ofqual
Student Minds
Childline

School Council

Information about our School Council

School Council

Queen’s Croft Councillors are elected by their peers. Each academic year every form group, except those with the most complex needs, elects a member of School Council to represent the views of the form about school matters and wider issues.

We meet at least once a month, to discuss topics relevant to school development, and students are encouraged to share views and raise questions from their peer group. We discuss challenges and look for solutions. School Council offers the opportunity to discover the ideas, thoughts and opinions of our learners, and to give them a voice. New developments can be shared and discussed with School Council and cascaded to the wider school. We are respectful of everyone’s views and contributions. A small budget is available for School Council initiatives.

School Councillors also represent our school on a number different occasions, from interviewing prospective members of staff, meeting with governors, opening new facilities with guests of honour, to showing visitors around our school. They are active ambassadors of Queen’s Croft.

Queen's Croft High School

Birmingham Road, Lichfield,
Staffordshire WS13 6PJ

Call us on

01543 227245 and speak to Mrs Hunt, Mrs Hodgkiss or Mrs Blakemore in the administration office

Email us at

 office@queenscroft.staffs.sch.uk