Windermere School Launches Curriculum New Changes
27 November 2023
It was fantastic to meet so many of you at our Sixth Form and (I)GCSE Curriculum Review on Tuesday 21 November 2023. Discussions surrounding our curriculum began before the pandemic, but have gradually gained pace from the September of 2022. We were extremely proud to be able to present the fruits of this labour to you this week, with new structures, new subjects and more flexibility now available for our pupils.
At GCSE, by introducing up to three one-year GCSEs, it will now be possible to run more subjects, and thus give our pupils more choice. Overall exam preparation load will be spread over two years, making it more manageable. From September 2025, there will be a number of mixed Year 10 and Year 11 lessons, opening up more possibilities of peer-to-peer learning; a proven technique to accelerate children’s progress. Pupils will gain greater experience of public examinations in Year 10 and (we know from experience) are therefore more likely to find their Year 11 examinations less stressful, with an increased possibility of higher grades.
Further to this, there will also be more curriculum enrichment possibilities, meaning that important and interesting areas of learning, which aren’t examined, can be studied. The opportunity to develop these wider skills, in preparation for a rapidly evolving future, is particularly exciting to me. According to a panel of experts assembled by the Institute for the Future, up to 85 percent cent of the jobs that today’s college students will have in 11 years haven’t been invented yet, making the enhanced skills and knowledge we can now offer to our pupils an essential ingredient for future success.
At Sixth Form, the introduction of a new subject in the IB Diploma pathway, Environmental Systems and Societies (ESS), means that a great deal more flexibility is possible here too. This subject, which is both a Science and a Humanity, can be counted as both within the International Baccalaureate (IB) requirements, making room for the study of more Sciences, more Humanities, more Arts or more Languages.
Research conducted in 2021 shows that the IB gives students of equivalent ability, a greater chance of entering a top 20 university, of completing their degree course, and of earning on average 5 percent cent more on graduation. The IB not only opens more doors academically, but, like the enhanced elements of the GCSE curriculum, it also provides a broader base of education. This is something which most educators and employers agree is even more important than ever. The present government has formally announced that this is the approach they want to supersede A levels within the British education system, but for the Sixth Form at Windermere School, the future is now.
Please find further information below:
With all change comes questions, and I would encourage all parents and pupils to ask any and all questions you might have concerning these exciting curriculum developments. Tutors, Heads of Section, Deputy Head Mrs Moses and myself are available to you, and we would be delighted to chat.
If you are interested in attending Windermere School please contact our friendly admissions team.
– Frank Thompson, Head of Windermere School