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Curriculum Overview

Curriculum Aims

We are ambitious for what our students can and will achieve, and our aim is to provide students with a curriculum that is stimulating, varied and relevant.

Our inclusive school gives each student a broad and balanced curriculum which is responsive to individual needs.  Our curriculum provides students with the knowledge, skills and attributes necessary for success in further study, in the workplace, and as active participants in all aspects of their lives no matter what their background. 

Our school values are embedded in our curriculum, and we aim to ensure that students are:

  • Ambitious in their learning and where their education will take them in the future
  • Able to work collaboratively on a range of different work and activities
  • Happy in their all areas of their learning whether timetabled lessons or enrichment activities
  • Able to show integrity in all aspects of their learning
  • Resilient by demonstrating endurance even when challenged
  • Versatile by covering a broad range of subjects and disciplines
  • Demonstrating Excellence in all aspects of the studies

We achieve this by giving students:

  • Experience of a broad range of subjects, content, ideas and concepts in in Key Stage 3, leading to more specialised study in Key Stage 4;
  • The opportunity to undertake, as far as possible, the full suite of English Baccalaureate qualifications at Key Stage 4;
  • Effective and varying teaching methods to provide diversity within the curriculum;
  • Support so their individual needs met in order that they can access the curriculum, or that alternative arrangements are in place where required;
  • The ability to develop strong personal moral values, respect for religious values and an understanding of other races, beliefs and ways of life;
  • Advice and guidance, so they are able to make choices for Key Stage 4, post 16 and are well qualified to progress to higher education, apprenticeships and employment.


Key Stage 3 - Years 7 - 9

At Key Stage 3 students enjoy a broad and balanced curriculum, which lays the foundation for GCSE study. All students study two languages in Year 7 and 8; Spanish and either French or German. In Year 9 students choose one language to continue studying in preparation for GCSEs however students can continue studying a second language after school if they wish to.  A small number of students in Year 9 take the Duke of Edinburgh bronze award with a focus on language skills. 

Students choose their GCSE options in Year 9. 

Subjects taught at Key Stage 3 are:

English Computer Science
Maths Philosophy and Religion
Science PSHE
Spanish and either French or German Technology and food technology (taught in rotation)
History PE
Geography Drama

Key Stage 4 - Years 10 -11 

At Key Stage 4, students continue to focus on the core subjects of English, Maths, Science, PE and PSHE, while beginning to specialise in other subjects. Science students take either combined or separate sciences and are guided by the science department when making these choices.  From September 2021, students who take separate science also study an accelerated GCSE in either Statistics or Religious Education. Religious Education is also taught as a separate GCSE option subject, and through our assembly programme, tutorial activities, and collapsed-timetable events. Students choose four option subjects one of which can be separate science. 

Current core GCSE subjects:


Current GCSE option subjects:

Art and Design German
Business Studies History
Child Development (Cambridge National Level 2) Music
Computer Science Physical Education
Construction (BTEC Level 1) Philosophy and Religion
ICT (OCR National Certificate in creative iMedia Level 1/2) Health and Fitness (NCFE Level 1/2 Technical Award in Health and Fitness)
Drama Product Design
Dance Photography
Food Preparation and Nutrition Spanish
French Fashion and Textiles
Geography Travel and Tourism (BTEC Level 2)

Personalising the Formal Curriculum 

Learning Support - The Learning Support department provides targeted support and intervention for those students finding difficulty in accessing the curriculum. This includes:

  • Fresh Start reading invention programme;
  • Comprehension support;
  • Maths intervention, through the Paired Maths scheme;
  • English as an Additional Language support;
  • Speech and Language intervention run by specialist teachers;
  • Anxiety and Anger Management support, organised in conjunction with the educational psychologist;

This support and intervention either takes place during tutor time, or students are temporarily withdrawn from subject lessons.

Shine – Students with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) benefit from specialist support from our Shine intervention team. Wherever possible, students are taught in mainstream lessons. Some are withdrawn from a small number of lessons in order to access one-to-one support, to enable them to thrive in the remainder of their curriculum.

Learning Mentors – students who are falling behind in a particular curriculum area may be assigned a Learning Mentor. This may involve academic mentoring during tutorial period or break times. Where necessary, students may be withdrawn from non-examined subjects, in order to spend more time on their examined subjects. Occasionally, Key Stage 4 students are withdrawn from option subjects to work with the Learning Mentors on the remainder of their curriculum.

The Supplementary Curriculum 

Students at Furze Platt also engage in a significant number of supplementary activities that take place before school, during tutorial periods, at break times, after school or during the school holidays. Some of the most significant - in addition to our ever popular Year 7 PGL trip - include:

Sport, including pre-school fitness activities, post-school training and competitive fixtures and the annual ski trip to Italy. These regularly include netball, hockey, cricket, tennis, basketball, ultimate Frisbee, table tennis, football, rugby, cross country, athletics, rowing and fitness clubs (please see our school clubs schedule for further details of termly activities offered);

Music, including individual peripatetic music lessons, and groups, bands and orchestras that practise and perform throughout the year. These include the Chamber Choir, Girls’ Choir, Lads’ Choir, Theatre Choir, school orchestra, Jazz Band and Community Choir;

Drama, including after-school drama clubs, leading to major performances for all age groups throughout the year;

Science, including a major programme of after-school speakers designed to inspire students into careers in science;

Technology, including the Greenpower club, which builds, tests, operates and races its own racing car;

Business, including a major partnership with John Lewis, which provides internships to Furze Platt students;

Educational visits, including many evening theatre trips, Biology and Geography field visits to the Dorset coast, History visits to the First World War Battlefields and to Auschwitz as part of the Holocaust Educational Trust's programme, Geography visits to Iceland, and Languages visits to France, Germany and Spain, as well as the annual ski trip to Italy;

Opportunities for our very most able, including the Humanities GCSE programme, which is open to those in Years 8 and 9, with students taking the Humanities GCSE at the end of Year 9;

Duke of Edinburgh programme for those on vocational courses at Key Stage 4 (Bronze level), as well as all students in Year 9 (Bronze), Year 10 (Silver) and Year 12 (Gold);

Careers and Higher Education events, including some Year 9 students visiting Oxford University, all Year 10 students visiting a university, the annual Careers and Higher Education Fair, work experience for some students in Years 10 and 11 and for all students in Year 12, and careers advice and mentoring for those most in need.

Curriculum during Coronavirus restrictions

The school's curriculum is largely unchanged under the current coronavirus restrictions. Where groups of students are asked to self isolate, learning will continue with online lessons being taught using Microsoft Teams.

For individual students who are self isolating in years 7-9, students can access learning resources and lessons via the links in the following document:

KS3 curriculum for self isolating students