St Bartholomew’s Curriculum Rationale
We have worked collaboratively to develop our Curriculum Rationale, which underpins the values of Getting It Right for Every Child (GIRFEC). Our process focused on asking everyone involved with our school three Questions: “What do we want to achieve for our children?” and “How are we going to achieve it?” and “What makes us Unique?” All stakeholders participate in regular self-evaluation to identify current good practice and areas to be improved. This process clearly highlights a shared vision, where:-
Every child has access to a relevant, motivating curriculum that nurtures, supports and challenges pupils, through active learning experiences, to develop skills, attributes and confidence that will enable them to reach their full potential and allow them to embrace the world in which we live, now and in the future. We want our children to be resilient, included and to have the confidence to promote their Catholic values and have the skills to articulate their own views and opinions in order to shape their future. We want to equip children with necessary skills, knowledge and understanding of how to keep themselves safe at home, on the street and online. We want to make learning enjoyable and to motivate children to want to continue learning. We want to encourage ambition in all, by providing them with relevant leadership opportunities and by giving pupils ownership of their own learning and developing skills for learning, life and work, including career management skills.
Our curriculum rationale is therefore firmly focused on implementing the following key features which are always present in everything we do, ensuring the very best in all learning and teaching experiences and ensuring we achieve our goals.
Effective learning and teaching
All children have access to high quality learning and teaching that takes account of the 7 principles of curriculum design ensuring all rich learning experiences are challenging and enjoyable, have aspects of personalisation and choice, are progressive, relevant, coherent and have a breadth and depth for all learners. Pupils are enthusiastic and are actively engaged in leading their own learning and able to talk about what they are learning and their personal targets.
There is always a clear focus on the development of core skills in Literacy, Numeracy and Health and Wellbeing, ensuring children have a firm foundation before starting secondary education. We are therefore committed to the development of progressive programmes within these areas that support a smooth transition to both primary and secondary school for all children. Staff have developed planning processes to take account of bundles of Experiences and Outcomes and related benchmarks to plan for effective learning, teaching and assessment. Effective tracking and monitoring helps to inform staff of pupils who require extra support, ensuring appropriate interventions at the correct time. Our staff take account of the totality of the curriculum through good communication and innovative practice, ensuring all four contexts for learning are considered when planning for interdisciplinary learning and across all curricular areas, ensuring opportunities for personal achievement and pupil participation and leadership in all aspects of the ethos and life of the school, through their membership in our citizenship groups.
Our location and setting enables quality outdoor learning opportunities in the different areas of the playground: tarmac for bikes, ballgames and sports; grassed area for sports activities; and encouraging a variety of physical active health opportunities. Our setting enables regular visits to church for liturgical celebrations and Sacraments. Children also have the opportunity to visit Summerlee Heritage Park, Drumpellier Country Park, The Fire Station, Asda and Tesco which are all nearby. Children have the added advantage of visiting local businesses and those further afield and also further education establishments as part of ‘Developing the Young Workforce’ week Children have daily opportunities to learn outdoors and staff are very creative with the use of space both indoors and outdoors.
We are always mindful that our school serves a specific demographic area and as such staff always take account of this to ensure equity and equality for all. The Social Index for Multiple Deprivation is used as part of our tracking and monitoring encouraging staff to know the child and follow the child. All pupils have the opportunity to review their learning with an adult on a regular basis and plan their next steps. The specific needs of all pupils are identified early and are continually monitored through pupil progress meetings. Appropriate support is put in place promptly to ensure all pupils can access learning and reach their full potential. A variety of evidence-based interventions are used to support pupils falling out with their expected milestones. All pupils are supported in transitions to ensure a smooth learning journey. There are established close working relationships between the school partner nurseries, St Ambrose High School and outside agencies.
In developing our curriculum rationale our staff and parents have developed a shared understanding of what we are trying to achieve. We understand and are committed to self-improvement and therefore realise the need to regularly review and evaluate any innovations to ensure they are fit for purpose and have a positive impact on all learners. Staff will continue to work with colleagues from other establishments to share good practice and to develop a curriculum that will continue to meet the ever changing challenges of the 21st Century.