Learning & Curriculum
The curriculum at Thorp Academy aims to support the highest level of achievement for all students.
At Thorp Academy we:
- Teach a broad and balanced range of subjects including all the key areas of the National Curriculum;
- Pay particular attention to developing the essential skills in English and mathematics;
- Provide a Key Stage 4 curriculum which offers a range of courses to enable opportunities for students to continue learning and achieving post 16;
- Provide each student with a suitable programme of learning and challenge designed to meet individual needs through banding.
At Thorp Academy a one week timetable is followed, each day has 5 periods of 60 minutes making 25 periods per week.
The School Day
The academy day begins at 8.45am and is made up of five one hour lessons and a 15 minute form period or assembly every day.
Break (15 minutes) is between periods 2 and 3.
Lunch (30 minutes) is between periods 3 and 4.
The academy day formally finishes at 2:45pm for most students although we have an extensive extra-curricular programme which runs every night from 2:45pm onwards. Students in Y11 have additional intervention and revision every night between 2:45pm and 3:45pm.
Students are set based on end of Key Stage 2 examinations in English and mathematics in the first instance. The sets are then reviewed following significant assessment points throughout the year.
1.1 Curriculum - EBACC and Progress 8
Students commencing their GCSEs from September 2014 will form part of a new measure of school performance - the "Progress 8" measure. Progress 8 is, to all intents and purposes, a measure of a student's performance across EIGHT subject disciplines.
Which qualifications will be accepted in the measure?
GCSE Mathematics and English Language/Literature
Mathematics and English are both double-weighted, with English and Maths both worth 20 per cent and the other six subjects each worth 10 per cent of the total measure. This means that it is paramount that your child makes good progress in English and Mathematics as the new measure asserts their importance like nothing that we have seen before.
English Baccalaureate slots
The English Baccalaureate (EBacc) is a performance measure for any student who achieves good GCSE passes (9 - 5) in English, mathematics, history or geography, two sciences and a language.
There are three slots for EBacc subjects. At Thorp Academy, we are well positioned in regard to these subjects as all of our Key Stage 4 students study at least three of these EBacc subjects.
The final three slots in the measure are the open group of subjects. Firstly, any EBacc subjects that have not counted in the EBacc slots can be used. English Literature can also be used here. The remaining slots can be filled with any other subjects from our options, as again, here at Thorp Academy, we are well positioned in regard to this as our full curriculum offer for our students in Key Stage 4 meets these measures.
1.2 Lower school - Years 7 & 8
Students in Years 7 and 8 are deemed to be in Lower school. They will study:
- Modern Foreign Language
- Design and technology
- Physical Education
- Performing Arts - which includes Music & Drama
- Life - which includes RE, Ethics & PSHCE
During Year 8, students will start their first 'Pathways' process, where they will be awarded subjects they are successful in to study further in the Upper school. Details of the individual subjects can be found in the Upper school section.
It should be noted, in our curriculum model students will undertake additional 'Pathways' processes in years 9, 10 and 11 where necessary to ensure every student in the academy is on the correct path to achieve their very best.
1.3 & 1.4 Upper School - Years 9, 10 & 11
Students in Years 9, 10 and 11 are deemed to be in Upper school.
Students in Upper school must study:
- GCSE English Language
- GCSE English Literature
- GCSE Mathematics
- GCSE Science
Students may also have the opportunity to study a selection of subjects from the following list. A students selection will be determined by their pathway:
(Please note - we can not guarantee a students choices will be met. A full process of guidance will be provided during the pathways process in year 8)
- GCSE Biology, GCSE Chemistry and GCSE Physics - Triple Science
- GCSE Combined Science
- GCSE French
- GCSE German
- GCSE Spanish
- GCSE Geography
- GCSE RE
- GCSE History
- GCSE Physical Education
- BTEC Level 2 Tech award in Sport
- GCSE Art and Design
- GCSE Health and Social Care
- GCSE Design Technology: Product design
- GCSE Design Technology: Textiles
- GCSE Food
- GCSE Design Technology
- GCSE Music
- GCSE Drama
Students must also study religious education (RE), and secondary schools must provide sex education. The content of these two subjects is decided locally but must remain within the law. All secondary schools are responsible for providing careers, enterprise education and citizenship. At Thorp Academy the content of RE, PSHCE and sex education is delivered through our 'Life' curriculum. Life is a timetabled lesson which takes place once per week for students in Y7 to 9.
Schools organise their own timetable, and can decide what else to teach their students. The curriculum on offer is reviewed every year and adjusted, where necessary, according to the learning needs of the students in a particular year group.