"The School has achieved its mission to encourage excellence and nurture talent" Ofsted
King Edward's curriculum is designed for children who are working at Level 5 or above at Primary School. We also have children transfer to us for their GCSEs and their A Levels and again the expectation is that pupils are academically able. Our curriculum requires children to have high levels of literacy and numeracy but even for Mathematics and Science a high level of verbal reasoning skills are needed to access the curriculum and we strongly recommend that prospective parents encourage their children to read widely to help them make an easy transition to the school.
Having said this every year the school also takes a small proportion of children who are working at Level 4 and are working towards Level 5. Often the potential of these children is identified through the 11+ testing papers and they go on to cope well with our curriculum although some may need additional support or a more personalised approach at KS4. We believe our job is to both encourage excellence and to nurture talent and often these children have specific talents in certain areas that we seek to support.
Each year we also take one or two able children who may have a specific learning difficulty and our small SEN unit will seek to provide the best support we can for these children to help them cope with accessing an academic curriculum.
At KS3 pupils follow a broad foundation that covers English Language and English Literature, Mathematics, General Science, Art and Technology [Graphics], History, Geography, Music and PE. In addition to this pupils also follow a course in Personal, Social and Health Education [PSHE] and Religious Studies [1/2 GCSE taken in Year 9]. Pupils also follow a cross curricular course in Digital Literacy that is taught through our Extended Project course which aims to give pupils a solid grounding in research and extended writing techniques. Through the combination of these three programmes pupils are exposed to the principles of different faiths, ideologies and of course the workings of our democratic system.
During Year 9 many subjects switch from the KS3 curriculum and begin to start on GCSE work. This usually begins around February half term of Year 9. Only the 1/2 GCSE in Religious Studies is taken in Year 9 in line with the Lincolnshire Agreed Religious Studies Education Programme. No other GCSE or GCSE modules are taken as the school does not believe in fast tracking students and instead believes in depth of study over early exam entry.
Pupils are set in English, Mathematics, Science and Languages from Year 8 with broader banding in place for the other subjects. This helps the staff to differentiate their lessons and better tailor these to the classes ability.
All students in KS4 will follow a broadly traditional core of five subjects including English Language, English Literature, Mathematics, Science [Biology, Physics and Chemistry] and a Modern Foreign Language. Students must then choose a further three subjects from History, Geography, Art, Graphics, Sports Studies, Business Studies and a second Foreign Language. All students will therefore take 9 GCSEs plus the half GCSE in RS already taken in KS3.
However there are some exceptions. The top sets in Science will take all three Sciences at GCSE [Triple Award] whilst in Mathematics the top sets will take iGCSE Mathematics in addition to their Mathematics GCSE. Able students also have the opportunity to take Philosophy of Religion where they can convert their 1/2 GCSE in RS to the full GCSE as well as taking the AS Level in Philosophy of Religion. There is therefore scope for the most able students to have a more academically enriched curriculum finishing with 12 or more GCSEs.
Equally for those who need additional support the school has a dedicated MASS Programme which replaces the foreign language with a programme of additional Mathematics, Science, English Language and Study Skills Support. These pupils will take 8 GCSEs.
The Sixth Form at King Edward's is focused on getting students into the top Universities in the country - Oxford, Cambridge, Russell Group, 1994 Group and the Times Top 50 Universities: Durham, Leeds, Manchester, LSE, Imperial College, Bristol, Exeter, Sheffield. Many of our students go on to successes in our regional Universities - Leeds, Sheffield, Nottingham and Loughbourgh but we also excel in sending students to Medicine and Veterinary Science courses.
All students study three A Levels over two years as well as Cambridge Universities Pre-U course in Global Perspectives in Year 12 and the Pre-U Extended Research Project in Year 13. The Pre-U provides an excellent vehicle for the discussion of a range of topics to stimulate discussion around faith, ideology, freedom, democracy, and ethics. The Pre-U is the equivalent of an A Level and accepted by the vast majority of Russell Group universities. Since we introduced it in 2012 we have seen more and more universities include the Pre-U in their offers. It is now common for students to recieve multiple offers e.g. AAA or AA and a D1 in Pre-U.
Our A Level curriculum is therefore focused primarily on the facilitator subjects recognised by these Universities to ensure our students have the best competitive advantage when applying to these Universities whilst the Pre-U course is specifically designed by Cambridge University to teach students the key skills they will need to be successful undergraduates. In addition we also have a range of enrichment subjects that pupils may take if they are not interested in pursuing an academic career at these Universities. Full details of our courses can be found on the Prospectus section of our website and also on the Sixth Form website.
Each year over 95% of our students successfully achieve their University place - the remainder generally have a gap year before going on to Higher Education.
As a School we are committed to the concept of Enrichment. This comes in many different forms and does not necessarily mean taking more qualifications. For example we run Chess Clubs, Debating and Public Speaking Groups all of which help provide stretch and challenge for our pupils. At GCSE we provide a varied programme of Academic Enrichment to enable departments to have a focus day or to put on other trips or talks. In addition to the Academic Options outlined at KS5 students have the option to take a fourth or fifth A Level if they wish - this is normally reserved for those wanting to take Further Mathematics where there is a clear educational benefit for doing it. It is worth remembering that even Oxford or Cambridge only make offers on 3 A Levels and take students each year with 8 GCSEs.
We also use various collapsed timetable afternoons or days to provide students with the opportunity to explore subjects in a different manner outside of the curriculum through a series of days where we collapse the timetable. On these days we bring in outside speakers, go on trips or visits and put on workshops that provide stretch and challenge. We also use the days to provide aspects of our PSHE and Citizenship Programme in a different and more interesting way.
In addition to these opportunities departments enter students for national competitions and events designed for able children.