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St Thomas More

Catholic School

1. Curriculum Intent

Our intent is encapsulated in our mission to provide our pupils with a curriculum which will enable them to grow in their faith and benefit from an enriching education; giving choices and enabling them to become purposeful and aspirational young adults.  We are an inclusive school where the teachings of Christ underpin a caring and supporting ethos.  We provide opportunities for pupils to develop their self-worth and to understand the importance of their place in our community.  

Our curriculum is driven by our intention for pupils to develop global awareness with a respect and understanding of British values, other faiths, nations and cultures, ensuring that a wide range of perspectives, views and voices are considered.   It reflects the pupils’ backgrounds and opens windows into new worlds, ensuring that pupils acquire knowledge and experiences beyond the realms of their lived experience. 

 From Year 7, our focus on mastery in the core and foundation subjects is supported by a knowledge-rich curriculum focused on the big ideas and concepts that underpin subject understanding and development within each discipline.  The curriculum is balanced and broad; intellectual, spiritual, creative, emotionally and physical development are all valued.  The curriculum is integrated, coherent and carefully sequenced to ensure progression through the key stages.   End points are identified, so we can be ambitious and identify the learning objectives for pupils, building on what has been taught before and preparing the ground for what comes next.      

We aim to systematically develop literacy, in particular vocabulary acquisition, and we recognise that reading is not merely a functional skill but should be a joy and part of life’s experiences.  Through curricular and extra-curricular learning, we nurture the rich cultural diversity our pupils bring to our community and we expand their cultural capital in order to build their confidence and facilitate their success.  

The particular needs of our pupils are informed by rigorous assessment allowing identification of gaps in pupils’ knowledge and skills.  This enables a coherent and informed approach, sometimes through collaborative planning, where both connections and distinctions between disciplines are made explicit.   We encourage teachers to use their professional expertise to ensure that curriculum content is appropriately pitched, and that demand on pupils at each stage of learning are reasonable and appropriate.   At all stages, our unrelenting focus on eliminating gaps for disadvantaged pupils continues to drive the curriculum. 

 We aim to ensure our pupils have bespoke advice at all stages and especially when choosing their options for the next stages of learning.   High expectations and careers advice ensure that pupils continue to grow in confidence both academically and pastorally and are able to develop ambitious and realistic plans for the future. 

Our curriculum is shaped by the needs of the pupil we serve, but we recognise it is vital to work with and listen to all stakeholders including our supportive parent body, our teachers and governors.