Curriculum

QUALITY of EDUCATION (CURRICULUM)

INTENT

Our curriculum is designed to fully develop students’ skills, values and interests beyond the classroom, so they develop as articulate and confident young people. Nothing is more important than enriching young people’s lives and we pride ourselves at MV16 with the wide variety of opportunities we can offer our students in conjunction with their academic study. We place great emphasis on pre-course guidance and the college is committed to ensuring that all students start on the course that is right for them.

Our curriculum is regularly reviewed to ensure it meets a range of progression pathways based on the individual aims and aspirations of students. This ensures our curriculum is fit for the purpose of the individual academic ambition of our learners. Post 18 progression opportunities are ever-changing and we pride ourselves on keeping up to date with changes that inform how we deliver our curriculum to students. This may be through the design and mapping of the subjects taught, alongside understanding and promoting new opportunities to students such as degree apprenticeships or additional courses which will complement their post 18 progression route.

Students from disadvantaged backgrounds, those with SEND and other minority groups receive additional targeted support to ensure their academic ambitions are realised. This is through a variety of ways ranging from Widening Participation initiatives, academic tutoring, additional enrichment opportunities and work experience or volunteering.

Each subject taught at the college is planned in a schematic way to allow for the course to be constructed in a manner that suits the linear model of A level teaching. This includes curriculum mapping, identification of the composite themes and associated components, recall opportunities and subject specific student led tasks. In addition students are equipped with resources to support and correlate with the progression of the subject so that they can assess and monitor their own learning journey. This is typically done via a subject handbook.

All stakeholders at the college have a shared vision in the academic ambition of the students and how they will achieve this. Having subject specialist teachers allows for students of differing abilities to access academic rigour where necessary to promote a high level of knowledge and understanding, ready for transition into university. This is further enhanced by offering additional courses such as the Extended Project Qualification whereby students can broaden their knowledge further. In addition a comprehensive wider curriculum exposes our students to cultural capital that has previously not been accessed. A bespoke wider curriculum responsive to our locality alongside national and international matters has been designed to for our students to thrive in modern society.

Support for learning and success extends far beyond the classroom. Built into the working week are opportunities for independent study and enrichment activities along with time to meet with a dedicated team of academic tutors. Students at the college benefit from their own personal tutor who will monitor their progress, achievement and approach to learning on a regular basis offering one-to-one support.

IMPLEMENTATION

All subjects are taught by teachers who have relevant expertise and extensive experience in the delivery of Key Stage 5 education. It is highly unusual for a teacher to deliver a second subject beyond their direct specialism. Consequently, planning is highly reflective, with subject teachers recognising that their pedagogy varies depending on the topic being taught. It is custom and practice at the college to vary teaching methodology. In addition external networking opportunities are sought where there is a single teacher of a subject, to ensure that teachers have the opportunity to exchange best practice and resources.

Learners understanding is systematically checked and learners are familiar with strategies and techniques used. It allows for any misconceptions to be accurately addressed as well as providing the opportunity for clear and direct feedback. This is done through live feedback, one to one assessments and comprehensive assessment sheets which are subject specific. There is an expectation that students engage with this feedback to improve their outcomes. It allows for their thinking to be challenged and allow for them to act on feedback in a timely manner to improve their outcomes. In addition their individual study programme allocates private study sessions which gives the opportunity for them to review and adapt their own study techniques to complement that of their teacher.

The course of study is explicitly designed to allow for students to remember the long term content of their course. Teachers at the college are experienced in adapting their programmes based on the needs presented by each cohort. Opportunities for recall are embedded in a variety of ways, and teachers have been exposed through inset into various theories regarding the power of recall and implementing techniques to support learning. Both summative and formative assessment techniques are used to inform planning.

The college offers an exceptional environment in which allows students to focus on learning. This is emulated throughout the building and is not isolated to specific areas. Alongside open spaces promoting independent learning, the environment in each classroom is one that supports the delivery of a coherently planned curriculum. The environment also develops study skills ready for transition to higher education post 18.

IMPACT

Learners develop detailed knowledge and skills in the subjects which they have chosen to study. As a result they achieve well. This is reflected in public examinations which meet government expectations. Furthermore learners achieve an understanding of the importance of being part of a community and embracing opportunities that are presented to them. Students leave the college equipped with qualifications and personal skills which have been enriched by being part of a progressive sixth form provider.

Aspirations and expectations across the college are extremely high. Robust and sustained partnerships with local and national HE institutions and employers provide a range of pathways for students who wish to follow either an academic or degree apprenticeship route as part of their next phase of learning. The qualifications gained allow students to meet their academic ambition and intentions. The college measures this success through the number of alumni who return to the college to share their experiences with current students.

October 2019

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