The curriculum at Paxman Academy is a key vehicle to achieving the Sigma Trust’s mission to ensure that no child is left behind and that education should foster in its learners a curiosity to discover who they are and what they are capable of, together with developing the resilience for them to test the boundaries of their abilities and build the skills necessary to face the future with confidence.
We offer a broad and balanced curriculum at Paxman Academy, ensuring all statutory obligations are met. We provide opportunities to build upon students’ primary school studies, but also believe that students have an entitlement to new experiences that will develop them physically, emotionally, linguistically, culturally and academically to ensure that they develop and enhance skills for their future learning and for life in the UK. Students study all subjects in Key Stage 3 for 2 years, when they will then select from a range of option choices to begin their GCSE studies from the start of Year 9.
The Key Stage 3 programme develops students’ knowledge, skills and understanding needed for the demanding GCSE curriculum at Key Stage 4, whilst also deepening their knowledge and understanding of wider concepts. We believe that students should be encouraged to opt for a range of subjects that continue to stimulate each area of the brain whilst preparing them for their post-16 studies; their chosen career and most importantly; to take their place in society where they can make a positive contribution.
Our curriculum is designed to challenge and stretch students; there is a focus on the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) subjects (English, Mathematics, Science, Computing, Geography, History, French and Spanish), but time is given to also develop creativity and flair in other areas such as Art, Music, Drama and Technology. Underpinning all of this there is an emphasis on the development of communication, reasoning and problem solving skills to support out STEM focus and the development of Oracy through our Aspire Development Programme to prepare students for life beyond school. Alongside this encompassing curriculum, an extensive range of enrichment activities are planned such as trips and visits as well as visitors to the Academy. These will aim to increase the amount of cultural capital that students will gain, whether related to the curriculum or developing students’ knowledge to enable them to become successful adults. We will further cultivate this through Deep Learning days, being involved in Maths and Science weeks, and by providing opportunities for our students to be involved in performance.
As well as providing a range of extra-curricular activities, which we view to be a basic entitlement, there will be a range of opportunities for students to develop their leadership skills such as the Student Leadership Team and Community Volunteering. In addition to this, we are planning an extended curriculum that provides opportunities for all and targeted students to further develop or improve work that originated in the classroom. These will be targeted where a student has not kept up with the learning in the classroom. Examples of such activities are instrumental tuition, targeted support for SEND and disadvantaged students, homework club and English and maths targets catch-up sessions.
We believe students should constantly develop skills in literacy and numeracy throughout their time at Paxman Academy and to this end, these elements run as a focus through the curriculum. In lessons, literacy and numeracy skills are consistently nurtured; in tutor time, competitions and activities raise the profile and students’ interest. Timely interventions for numeracy and literacy are programmed throughout the year to improve students’ skills where this is a challenge.
High expectations run through all areas of the curriculum; aspirational targets are set for all students. In all year groups, careers guidance gives students independent advice for their future aspirations, which is strengthened by regular visits from professionals and organisations. Well qualified and dedicated staff convey a passion for their subject and a desire for students to succeed. Through rigorous and targeted assessments, students will progress through their curriculum, developing independence and resilience.
Weekly assemblies are held to allow students to reflect on life in 21st Century Britain and to further understand the British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, respect and tolerance. Daily tutor time enables staff to deliver an effective and extensive programme of PSHE. Citizenship and Beliefs, Philosophy & Ethics lessons also build upon this programme, leading our students to become informed, responsible young adults when they leave Paxman Academy.
Through our effective, established and successful curriculum, students from all backgrounds and abilities will leave prepared for the next steps, ready to continue their journey of learning in this rapidly changing world.
|ADP||Aspire Development Programme|
|MFL||Modern Foreign Languages|
Year 7: Additional Information
Students are grouped on ability in English, Mathematics, Science, Geography, History, RE and MFL. Groupings are based on Key Stage 2 scores.
Students are taught in mixed ability classes for Art, Drama, Music, PE and Computer Science.