At NKS the curriculum provides a wide range of subjects which offer breadth and balance for student learning and progress across all year groups 7 to 13. A wide range of academic, creative and vocational courses are studied, including the National Curriculum subjects at Key stage 3 and 4. Since September 2013 the school has a new ten day timetable (with five lessons each day rather than four) which allows for flexibility and creative approaches to learning within subject areas or in cross-curricular groups e.g. the Link skills lesson. This recent timetable change has increased the capacity to provide more Core subject lessons and enabled a review of subject allocations to best suit the needs of the learners. It has also allowed for reflection and evaluation to improve the curriculum offer further. This ensures that no area of the curriculum has been diminished due to recent government priorities and that all academic, creative and vocational subjects are valued.
Core subjects include all National Curriculum and EBAC courses. Creative courses include the Arts and Performing arts departments as well as the creative digital media courses. Core and Creative courses form part of the Key Stage 3 compulsory curriculum and students make option choices in for Y10 and Y12. Vocational subjects e.g. Engineering and Sport also enhance the curriculum offer. The sport provision are extensive and the school has access to the facilities of the North Kesteven Leisure Centre. This Leisure centre is soon to be redeveloped and extended which the school is very excited about. The development of the creative and performing arts is also supported by specialist provision including the Terry O’Toole Theatre, which belongs to the school in partnership with North Kesteven District Council, Leisure in the Community and Lincoln City Council (see the ‘Terry O’Toole Theatre’ link on the NKS website). Learning across all subject disciplines is highly valued for the skills that students develop and the confidence they experience. Performing Arts subjects also have a unique role to play in enabling students to experience a wide range of social and cultural situations to enhance their learning across the whole curriculum and beyond!
As the students progress through the school, the educational provision becomes more personalized to best suit student abilities, interests and potential e.g. via student groupings and course choices. NKS also has links to excellent offsite provision and has recently been used as a case study for excellent practice by Ofsted. This i s supported by an extensive transition programme and careers information, advice and guidance, thus NKS provides and accessible curriculum which is inclusive and varied. Students are encouraged to develop a wide range of skills to enable them to be successful and enjoy their learning in a supportive environment. They also contribute to the curriculum decision making at key transition points by providing feedback and via the vocal student leadership team meetings and discussions.
In Key Stage 3 and 4 National Curriculum subjects are taught within the school curriculum as well as other subjects that benefit student development and skills. Provision is made to offer students different combinations of courses at Key Stage 4, including access to the English Baccalaureate and Foundation learning courses. Students study the Core courses and choose four option subjects, with the addition for some of a twilight enrichment course in one of the performing arts.
For sixth form students NKS collaborates with Sir Robert Pattinson Academy to provide a very wide range of academic, creative and vocational courses (currently over sixty) at both level 3 and level 2 in the North Hykeham Joint Sixth Form. Students also have access to enrichment and complementary activity opportunities to enhance their sixth form experiences e.g. Sports and Dance leadership and peer mentoring.
An extensive range of extra-curricular and enrichment activities are offered to students across many subject areas e.g. Maths Challenges and Physical Education teams, and this greatly enhances student experience, enjoyment and understanding. There are also a wide range of creative and performing arts extra-curricular opportunities e.g. Art in the community and Performing Arts clubs e.g. boys dance group ‘Maneuver’. The school works with many partner providers e.g. artsNK to offer extensive extra-curricular opportunities and workshops. These enrichment opportunities have been proven to have a huge impact upon student wellbeing, enthusiasm and progress.
For further information about particular year group courses please see the ‘Key Stage 4 transition’ and ‘North Hykeham Joint Sixth Form’ sections of the NKS website.
Curriculum and Timetable at NKS
At NKS the curriculum provides a wide range of subjects which offer breadth and balance for student learning and progress across all year groups 7 to 13.
The ten day timetable, first introduced in September 2013, has allowed the timetable to be more flexible and adapt to the changing national priorities.
Each year the timetable subject allocations are reviewed, with decisions for changes being made by January. Any changes are researched and fully justified in the context of the national agenda, e.g. Progress 8, EBAC and any staffing constraints.
At the main transition points, of Y9 to Y10 and Y11 to Y12, detailed timetable review takes place to develop the option blocks for Key Stage 4 and the North Hykeham Joint Sixth Form (NHJSF). The options at Key Stage 4 and NHJSF are more varied than listed in the table below (please see the relevant section of this website for more details). An extensive programme to support transition, including a range of events and meetings, exists to support students, teachers and parents at these important decision making times.
The timetable subject allocations provide clear progression routes for students at NKS from Y7 to Y13.
Y10 – 8%
Y11 – 10%