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Year 9 options

Compulsory and optional subjects

There is an emphasis in our curriculum on academic excellence and the need to prepare students for nationally recognised academic qualifications. Options choices are made in the spring term of year 9, with an information evening for parents and students taking place in January each year. Students are provided with support and guidance to make their options choices.

Reasons for choosing a subject include:

  • Enjoying it.
  • Finding it interesting.
  • Being good at it.
  • Teachers indicating that you will do well at it.
  • The subject is needed or useful for future career ideas.

You should not choose a subject just because your friends are doing it!

It is advisable to discuss the courses available with parents/carers, family, subject teachers and the school’s Careers Coordinator, Mrs Higgott (who is available in the Careers Library).

You may also want to check out the Icould videos.

PSHE and sex education

Two periods a fortnight are set aside for PSHE. Topics covered include study skills, health education, environmental issues, e-safety, careers education, financial and political awareness, often using external speakers and agencies.

Our approach to sex and relationship education recognises that parents are the key figures in helping their children to cope with the emotional and physical aspects of growing up. The delivery of the sex education policy is through the programmes of study for biology and PSHE. The policy is available on the school website.

English Baccalaureate (EBacc)

The EBacc is not a qualification in itself. It is a particular group of GCSE subjects looked on favourably by universities. The subjects are English, maths, science (including computer science), history or geography and a modern foreign language. You do not need to have studied all these subjects to go to university but having your GCSE mix steered towards the English Baccalaureate will help keep options open.

GCSE Grades

The Government has introduced a new 1-9 grading scale to replace the A* to G grades. Full exams will be taken in the summer at the end of two years of study. More information is available from the Ofqal blog.

Subjects and careers

Use the Unifrog  to check subjects that may be needed for a particular career and to check which careers link to GCSE subjects that you like.

To check if specific subjects are needed for a career go to EXPLORE CAREERS and search for a career you want to check out.

Alternatively, use the National Careers Service Job Profiles to check out careers.