Our school will provide a safe and happy environment where everyone aspires to make remarkable rates of progress, personally and academically.
We will inspire all to develop our core values of Respect, Care and Honesty. We will support each other, value each other and celebrate our talents.
Our students will be supported to grow into remarkable individuals, ready to thrive in the modern world. We hope to give our Todmorden community an Aspirational, Inspirational and Remarkable school.

Our Curriculum, Principles and Aims

Our curriculum is focused on the development of skills, knowledge and understanding, social, moral, spiritual and cultural education and British values. Our curriculum is aspirational, supporting social mobility. We give our students a broad and balanced curriculum that will give them the foundation they need to lead happy and successful lives, underpinned by our core values of respect, care and honesty. Our curriculum supports long-term goals including progression onto post 16 education and apprenticeships or employment with training. We realise that to gain success in examinations students need to be resilient and teaching needs to develop skills, knowledge and understanding and the powers of recall and retention. In year 7 our students get off to a ‘flying start’ and careful tracking and intervention ensures progress is made throughout key stages 3 and 4.

At THS we aim to provide a curriculum that will inspire students and provide them with the aspirations to achieve remarkable rates of progress, both academically and personally. We intend that our curriculum, both within taught lessons and beyond them, should create an environment where questioning, academic risk-taking, divergent thinking and the freedom to learn from mistakes are all encouraged. We also aim that our curriculum should imbue in our students these qualities: respect, care and honesty. Our curriculum will be accessible to all students regardless of their background or starting point. Whilst it is designed to provide a broad, rich and deep learning experience for the greater majority of students it is also flexible enough to be tailored to the needs of students who need addition support with literacy and numeracy. It seeks to strike an appropriate balance between the types of subjects that are delivered whilst ensuring that all students, regardless of prior learning, have access to academic, sporting and creative qualifications as well as extra-curricular opportunities.

Our curriculum should be seen in its widest sense as the entire planned learning experience. This includes formal lessons as well as trips, routines, and any learning that may take place outside the classroom.

We will ensure that students who have not made prior expected rates of progress catch up with their peers. A strategic approach to the organisation of the curriculum for these students will ensure that they do not miss out on opportunities to study the broadest range of subjects establishing equality of provision. We also wish to ensure that attainment and progress gaps between boys and girls, disadvantaged, SEN and figures for all students nationally closes. This will be achieved through timely intervention systems and rigorous teaching and learning which sees the ‘bar set high’ for what we expect students to achieve.

Currently our curriculum still values the breadth and depth of a full 3 year key stage 3 experience. We believe that this gives students a sound grounding in basic and core learning skills as well as providing time for them to develop in preparation for rigorous GCSEs and examinations. We believe this builds resilience and broadens experiences. (All students are taught English Literature as a discrete GCSE course in addition to English Language).

At key stage 4 students will be able to specialise through an ‘options’ process. It is our aim that all students have equal access to the range of subjects regardless of prior attainment. This is underpinned by a core group of subjects comprising of English, maths, science, PE, PfL (Preparation for Life) and computer science. We expect lower-attaining students to access Ebacc subjects and languages in the same way as their peers. We aim to build our Ebacc capability in the short and medium term so that the majority of students have access to these types of subjects. It is our wish to do this as this fits the profile of students in the early years of KS3 where we are finding an increase in the number of students coming with high KS2 scores.

We wish our curriculum to provide outcomes for students that will give them access to further study higher level employment or training. In addition, we wish to develop their love of learning and equip them with strategies necessary for GCSE success. However, good examination results are only part of the picture, our curriculum will deliver a rich and full knowledge of the world in which we live. In addition, a full PSHCE programme is delivered via 3 ‘space’ days each year in key stage 3/4. Themes for these days include personal development, citizenship, British values, SMSC, mental health and sex education. Literacy, numeracy, SMSC and British values are integral to the tutor and assembly programmes and teaching and learning. Our extra-curricular programme is designed to enrich students’ educational experience in particular building cultural capital. Our whole learning experience seeks to highlight soft skills, such as confidence, communication skills, team working, resilience and independence. All of these skills are developed both in and out of class. We have a very strong student leadership programme, seeking to develop confidence and other life skills, this programme includes prefects, student voice, youth parliament, charity events, student tours, students interviewing staff and an apprenticeship programme. All these activities are great ways to build the skills employees are seeking.

Our Careers programme links with local businesses and students meet with a range of employees and employers through events such as careers panels and enterprise days, which open them up to the world of work and the skills that employers are looking for in their workforce. Our Enterprise co-ordinator advises on our school Careers Action plan each year, and advises on how to develop this programme year on year, in line with Gatsby benchmarks. We have also forged strong links with local post 16 providers, hosting a post 16 Education Fair each year and arranging visits by post 16 institution staff  and to those institutions in order to prepare for transition and allow students to be advised about the preparation of CVs and applications, for example.

We have a senior leader in charge of STEM with the brief to promote STEM activities and we have made contact with all the schools’ liaison teams from local colleges. Our students adapt well to Post 16 education.

Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural Education are also the central tenet around which our curriculum is built.  The curriculum, even in its broadest sense, will ensure students experience activities which demonstrate our commitment to upholding and sharing British Values. The motto of ‘Respect, Care & Honesty’ is how we drive SMSC in our school, by encouraging our students to embrace the fundamental British Values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs. This is delivered through explicit experiences for students as well as ‘pause for thought’ opportunities in every subjects and lesson. In addition SMSC and British values are integral to the tutor and assembly routines.

The Distribution of Curriculum Subjects

Key Stage 3 (Years 7, 8 & 9)

Core English (4hrs), Maths (4hrs), Science (4hrs), Computer Science (1hrs), EPR (1hr), PE (1hr).
Foundation Technology (1hr), Geography (2hrs), History (2hrs), MFL (2hrs), Art (1hr), Music/Dance & Fitness/Drama (2hrs per week on rotation).

(Year 7 students will do Spanish Culture and Additional Art on a rotation).

PSHCE (Personal Social Health and Citizenship Education) Students will also have 3 full days studying a PSHCE programme covering aspects such as citizenship, sexual health, sex education, tolerance, extremism, mental health and preparing students for the world of work.

Key Stage 4 (September 2018 Years 10 & 11)

Current Year 10
Core English (5hrs), Maths (4hrs), Science (4hrs), Computing (1hr), Core PE (1hr), PfL (1hr).
Options Block A Block B Block C
Business Studies PE PE
Technology History Triple Science
Media Studies Music Art
Spanish Computing Media Studies
EPR Food & Nutrition EPR
History Business Studies Geography
(Personal Social Health and Citizenship Education)
PfL (Preparation for Life) is a two term programme delivered through discrete lessons during term 1 & 2 in year 10. In term 3 students’ experience in IT is extended with the conversion of this lesson to an additional computer science lessons. In term 3 year 10 have a SPACE day covering sex education, British Values, Citzenship, health and well being and careers.


Current Year 11
Core English (5hrs), Maths (4hrs), Science (4hrs), Computing (2hr), Core PE (1hr).
Options Block A Block B Block C
Art Business Studies Sport Studies
D&T History Triple Science
Media Studies Music Drama
Spanish Geography Computer Science
French Food Tech’ EPR
(Personal Social Health and Citizenship Education)
PfL (Preparation for Life) is a two term programme delivered through discrete lessons during term 1 & 2 in year 10. In term 3 students’ experience in IT is extended with the conversion of this lesson to an additional computer science lessons. In term 3 year 10 have a SPACE day covering sex education, British Values, Citzenship, health and well being and careers.
  • We believe our curriculum is a framework for setting out the aims of a programme of education, including the knowledge and understanding to be gained at each stage of a student’s time at school.
  • We aim to translate that framework over time into a structure and narrative, within the context of our school.
  • This will support better outcomes for students as we use our curriculum to evaluate what knowledge and understanding pupils have gained against expectations.As the school continues to grow and improve we aim:

    Curriculum Design 2019 and Beyond
  • To offer an increasingly academic curriculum.
  • To build our offer in order to encourage take up of the English Baccalaureate (English, Maths, Science, a humanity and Spanish).
  • To offer deeper provision for increasing numbers of students with SEND.
  • To promote a flying start in Year 7 and progression through KS3/4.
  • To narrow the gap between disadvantaged students and non-disadvantaged.
  • To promote progression, reducing NEET (children not in education employment or training).
  • To ensure equality of provision despite gender, race, sexual orientation etc.
  • To ensure the life chances of our students are maximised. Our curriculum builds up cultural capital, underpins the school values prompting exceptional behaviour and life skills.
    Click on the Key Stage that you want to access below, to view curriculum maps with more detailed information.

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