Curriculum Overview

At Easthampstead Park Community School we aim to develop learners who are happy, healthy and equipped in every way to deal with the challenges and opportunities they will face in their lives beyond school. We aim to instill in students a love of learning which will be life long, allowing them to adapt and flourish in any situation. We seek to develop students who have a strong sense of community, both locally and globally, able to lead others and bring about positive change.

Curriculum Time

Curriculum time is time spent in subject lessons. Students at EPCS follow a 2 week timetable and have 40 x 70 min lessons of curriculum time per 2 week cycle. In addition to lesson time all students have 30 mins of PREP time per day. Students spend different amounts of time in different subjects. For example, more time is spent in the core subjects of English, Maths and Science. The time changes as students make their choices for GCSE/BTEC subjects to study in Y9-Y11.

Click below to view/print a detailed breakdown
of curriculum time by subject.

Changes to GCSEs and A levels

Click on the image below to open/ download a pdf (192kb)

Click below to view a video clip explaining the new GCSE grading system.

Click below to view a video clip explaining the new Progress 8 perfomance measure.

Promoting British Values

The government set out their definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy. These were reinforced in September 2014 due to recent events. These new regulations will sit alongside the requirements of the Equalities Act, which also applies to all types of school.

Schools will be expected to focus on, and be able to show, how our work with pupils is effective in embedding fundamental British values.

Promoting British values at Easthampstead Park Community School

We agree with the Department for Education’s five-part definition of British values:

  • democracy
  • the rule of law
  • individual liberty
  • mutual respect
  • tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

At EPCS students will encounter these principles throughout everyday school life. We have based our school values of “Respect and Pride” as key principles defining the way we work and learn in school. These were created by students in response to the school’s values and vision. As a community school we subscribe to the view that “It takes a whole village to raise a child”  We try to engage in a positive way with our community in our ambition to be judged as an outstanding school for children in our local area. The curriculum is mapped in detail across the whole school. Listed below are some examples of how we promote these values in our school community:

Democracy

Pupil voice is significant in regards to life at the EPCS. Our pupil elected school Parliament mirrors our UK democratic structure and is starting to play a strong role in developing our school. They are elected by their class peers and are involved in making the school a better place to learn and be. Pupils are being given opportunities to input in regards to what and how they learn, which promotes pupil voice. For example, in our new criss cross day programme the pupils decide as a class how they would like to learn certain skills through a choice of activities and this is used to inform the teacher’s planning.

Pupil questionnaires and interviews are also conducted throughout the year. We know that the formation of the school Parliament and councils and the active participation of our pupils will sow the seeds for a more sophisticated understanding of democracy in the future.

The Rule of Law

Our pupils will encounter rules and laws throughout their entire lives. We want our pupils to understand that whether these laws govern the class, the school, the neighbourhood or the country, they are set for good reasons and must be adhered to.

This understanding of the importance of rules will be consistently reinforced through assemblies and our curriculum. The involvement of our pupils in the creation of the school rules helps them to understand the reasons behind the rules and the consequences if they are broken. Through philosophical enquiry in our RS, PHSE and enrichment lessons, we allow opportunity to debate and discuss the reasons for laws so that children can recognise the importance of these for their own protection. Throughout the year we welcome visits from members of the wider community which have included the police, war veterans, the fire brigade and many more. We believe that clear explanations and real life stories emphasise the importance of the rule of law for our pupils.

Individual Liberty

We invest a great deal of time in creating a positive culture in our school, so that children are in a safe environment where choices and freedoms are encouraged This is only possible if staff and pupils consistently maintain our “Respect and Pride” expectations. In lessons, learning tasks are developing as part of our pedagogy so there is a greater opportunity for the child to decide upon the format. We have invested in something called real smart to promote equity, running on google so that our students can use different devices to access a wide range of resources to support their learning. We encourage children to choose the task that will challenge them, giving them more freedom to determine their own learning. We offer a range of clubs which pupils have the freedom to choose from, based on their interests. Through our ICT-E-Safety, PHSE, RS and science subjects, we educate children on their rights and personal freedoms as well as supporting them in recognising how to exercise these freedoms safely. At EPCS we believe that valuing choice and freedom in daily school life will foster a value for individual liberty as the children embark upon their adult lives.

Mutual respect

Mutual respect is at the core of our school life. Students learn to treat each other and staff with great respect. This is evident when walking around the School and in the classrooms. Our staff work hard to engage children and foster an atmosphere of mutual respect and collaboration and it is our ambition to ensure this is in place for every student and every teacher, every day. Our School motto is “Respect and Pride” and this partnership is seen throughout the various relationships between students and staff.

Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

At EPCS we offer a culturally rich and diverse curriculum in which all major religions are studied and respected. At the EPCS we strongly believe that tolerance is gained through knowledge and understanding. Through our curriculum and the routines of our daily school life, we strive to demonstrate tolerance and help children to become knowledgeable and understanding citizens who can build a better Britain for the future.

SMSC

SMSC stands for Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural learning.

All students, whilst studying at EPCS, partake in a number of activities in and out of the classroom that develop their understanding of these key concepts, allowing them to become well rounded individuals with an ability to consider all pathways in life. SMSC is not taught; it is instead an opportunity for students to use time to research and develop thoughts about life topics – so that they leave each session with greater knowledge and have come to their own decisions, weighing up what matters to them. EPCS drives the notion that ‘knowledge is power’ and through our rigorous SMSC programme, we ensure that all students have the knowledge to make good life choices and become the best people they can be.

Spiritual Education

We strive to:

  • Give students opportunities to research the beliefs of others
  • Discuss the reasons behind different beliefs
  • Weigh up the similarities and differences of different beliefs
  • Provide students with time to consider why they believe to be important
  • Learn more about the world around them
  • Reflect on their experiences and reconsider their actions
  • Imagine scenarios and their outcomes
  • Evaluate their ability to deal with certain situations

To do this we offer students a number of opportunities:

  • PHSE sessions on love, friendship, sex and morality.
  • Assemblies offering information on topical beliefs – we explored the reasons for acts of terrorism after discussing events in Brussels.
  • Prevent strategy
  • Excursions to new places – trips and challenges that push students outside of their comfort zone.
  • Sign up to groups such as Life Skills or Duke of Edinburgh.
  • Mentoring, to reflect on past success and areas of improvement
  • Adviza sessions.
  • Sign up to national events, such as Kindness Day.

Moral Education

We strive to:

  • Make students clearly aware of right and wrong actions in society
  • Show students the consequences of actions, in order to promote behaviours that will support and nurture their drive to succeed.
  • Share viewpoints of others, taking one situation and considering feelings from a number of perspectives.
  • Weigh up ethical issues that may link to a person’s moral stance.

To do this we offer students a number of opportunities:

  • Bike It Crew – information to all on the effects of carbon footprints
  • Assemblies on The Rule of Law
  • E-Safety day – Year 9
  • Law PHSE sessions
  • Anti-bullying group
  • Enterprise – group work on a large scale.

Social Education

We strive to:

  • Provide students with opportunities in a range of contexts both in and out of school.
  • Encourage students to participate in new experiences.
  • Commit to our community projects and ensure engagement with community groups.
  • Discuss British Values and debate the importance of heritage.
  • Think about ways every person can contribute to the atmosphere of a room, an organisation, a school or even a community.

To do this we offer students a number of opportunities:

  • Consistent reference to Respect and Pride
  • Maintaining equality across all groups, for rewards and for sanctions, adhering to one law.
  • Remembering British Values by revisiting key historical events in both History and RS.
  • Celebrating a number of social conventions through assemblies.
  • Partaking in community projects such as GET SET for Community Action
  • Actively working with Partner Primaries to build a friendship and act as role models within the community.
  • Partake in National competitions such as The Big Pedal (Top Regional Winner!) and Bike It (Bronze Award). The Lit Quiz, Discovering Democracy Awards (winner) and STEM youth projects (silver engagement award)

Cultural Education

We strive to:

  • Give students the opportunity to think about where their own beliefs and morals come from.
  • Help students realise the differences between different areas across the UK and the wider world.
  • Draw attention to the large amount of cultural groups and ethnicities and give students opportunities to learn about their differences, their beliefs and their origins.
  • Ensure students partake in real world activities, emulating British life.
  • Encourage creativity through the arts
  • An appreciation of diversity and what it can offer a society.

To do this we offer students a number of opportunities:

  • Democratic elections – students vote for their tutor representatives to sit on School Council, then elect a Parliament.
  • Participation in Youth Council – voicing the opinions of Bracknell youth
  • Trips to new places, to learn about other histories and beliefs
  • Politics PHSE unit
  • PA ambassadors
  • An active drama club
  • An annual school production
  • A number of dance, drama and music evenings throughout the year
  • Shakespeare’s School Festival