The Key Stage 3 curriculum is underpinned by taking a student-centred approach.  Students access the curriculum in a way that supports their needs in a holistic way with the Education, Health and Care Plan outcomes at the centre of the personal development.  The curriculum allows space for the development of the skills that will be needed to allow them to thrive in the wider world and is adapted to the complexities of needs of each and every student.

In Key Stage 3, we take an inclusive approach to teaching and learning and those students who have a bespoke learning experience still follow a similar journey to students across the different pathways.

Our curriculum, especially CLL and Maths allows students opportunities to revisit learning and build on their knowledge and skills.  We call this a 'Spiral Curriculum' and this ensures that learning is always revisited and built upon across their learning experiences.

We also use Personal Learning Goals to support progress within our curriculum.  Our PLG's are based within the EHC Plan and we believe that they they are fundamentally linked to the curriculum.  We believe as a school that our EHC outcomes support better access to the curriculum and in turn the curriculum supports achievements of PLG outcomes.




The Key Stage 3 curriculum facilitates experiences and opportunities for students to work towards and achieve their individual outcomes set within their EHC Plans.  This journey is recorded and assessed using Evidence for Learning and ensures that the progress measured for each student is relevant to their needs and works towards preparing them for adult life.

Students in Key Stage 3 will access a broad and balanced curriculum that is based on the acquisition of knowledge and the application of skill in functional and meaningful activities. The curriculum is adapted to the needs of the current students and forms 3 main pathways, Explorer, Engager and Challenger.  For some groups the approach is fluid and will adapt and change to the daily needs of the students.  All students will access a curriculum that supports their cognitive development but also their communication and interaction skills, their social and emotional development, and their physical development.  They will have opportunities to develop their independence and self-help skills through a range of curricular activities. Students in Key Stage 3 will prepare themselves for their future accreditation studies in Key Stage 4

Key Stage 3




What is the intention of teaching and learning?

To develop a secure foundation of self-regulation and self-management so that each student can develop a strong resilient ethos to learning and life.


To develop literacy and numeracy skills through

To identify student learning journeys and potential accreditation routes and final destinations.


To ensure staff research based CPD is linked to the improvement of teaching and learning for all students in Key Stage 3.


To ensure the emotional wellbeing of all students through a consistent approach use the Thrive Approach.


To ensure all students are world-ready and can become positive and active citizens within the community and the wider world.


How will it be implemented?

Students will be ability based for core learning (Communication, Literacy and Language (CLL) and My Thinking - Maths).


CLL groups are ability based using reading/spelling and handwriting assessments to allow better targeted approaches to improve SPaG, reading and writing. 


Maths groups are based upon ‘Stage’ assessment baselines that take place within the first ½ term.


ALL students will engage with the Read/Write Inc scheme and phonics programme.


Students will have access to a curriculum that allows focus on Personal Learning Goals (PLGs) through allocated time and across the curriculum.


Teaching and learning approaches will be based on evidence-based practice and applied consistently across the curriculum including CPA approaches for core learning.


All students will have access to universal Thrive approaches that are specifically timetabled.  Some students will have individual 1:1 session.


All students will have access to a SRE and PSD curriculum that prepares them for the wider world and the roles and responsibilities of being a responsible citizen.

How will we measure or monitor impact of teaching and learning?

Evidence for Learning and PLG’s will be used measure progress of EHC Outcomes.


Assessment systems for Maths and English will measure progress termly.


Branch Maps for Communication, Literacy and Language (CLL) and Maths are used to track small step progress for students working through our Explorer Curriculum and beyond.


Thrive assessment reviews will measure the impact of social and emotional development.


Annual review process and provision maps will be used to measure the impact of interventions and support strategies on students’ access to learning.


Staff CPD has a positive impact on outcomes through lesson observations, quality review processes and subject improvement.





All subject areas have a planned sequence of learning.  The curriculum in Key Stage 3 has a long-term overview (3 year cycle) and this is supported by medium-term plans which set out the sequence of learning for each termly topic.  Below is a link to all curriculum information for subject areas.

Click Here for Key Stage 3 Subject Information