The core curriculum
Students in years 7, 8 and 9 follow the National Curriculum ICT strategy using the Sample Teaching Units. The curriculum in Y9 is designed in such a way as to develop the skills needed for KS4 courses.
As a faculty we have taken part in the national KS3 tests, firstly with the whole cohort, and then last year with a sample of students so that teacher assessments could be cross-referenced against the tests.
Currently all students in KS4 are working towards the EDEXCEL Award in Digital Applications. We are, however, reviewing available courses at KS4 and this is an area we are looking to develop.
the current year 11 cohort are completing a mixture of GCSE ICT and the AiDA course. Our current year 10 course is a brand new course offered by the OCR exam board. The Cambridge Nationals are offered at several different strands. We are completing the course that offers students the opportunity to obtain an GCSE equivalent qualification that is recognised under the new assessment framework.
Students have to complete 4 from the following units, please note that units 1 and 2 are compulsory units. Students are then offered the opportunity to complete two units from the non mandatory strands
Unit 001 Understanding computer systems [Exam]
Unit 002 Using ICT to create business solutions.
Unit 003 Handling data using spreadsheets
Unit 004 Handling data using databases
Unit 005 creating an interactive product using multimedia components
Unit 006 creating digital images
Unit 007 Creating dynamic products using sound and vision
Unit 008 Introduction to computer programming
Unit 009 Exploring computer hardware and networks
Unit 010 Developing control systems
Student initiated project
Unit 011 Understanding technology – a project based approach
As a Specialist College we work in close partnership with our local schools. There is a thriving KS2-3 group liaison group, working together to raise the attainment of students entering Key Stage 3. Through our specialist status funding, we have appointed a technician to work one day a week in each of our four main feeder primary schools. We have provided data-logging and control technology facilities they can share, with access to technician support.
Extra-curricular and enrichment provision
Various members of the team provide time for students to extend their capabilities and to use the facilities both for ICT coursework and work in other subjects.
Study support is provided by the Department during the run-up to examinations and to complete outstanding coursework. These sessions are always very well attended by students.
Accommodation and resources
Six rooms are currently set up as main ICT-resourced teaching bases. Four form the core ICT Faculty teaching rooms; one is hosted in the Mathematics Facuulty; one is in the Design and Technology Faculty, which also has some CADCAM equipment. Each of these has one computer per student in the group. In addition to these, the English, Humanities and Music Faculties have rooms containing 15 or more computers. The Science Faculty has a lapsafe containing 15 notepad computers with WiFi connectivity to the main network. Science also has data-logging equipment. Two more lapsafes are available for staff across the college to use to aid learning and teaching.
The Faculty has its own video recording and editing facilities, as well as the software to make movies of software demonstrations from the workstation screen. This resource is used to provide online learning support across the whole site.
We have many interactive whiteboards in school, including one in each ICT room. The college also has the Qwizdom interactive voting system, currently hosted within the Mathematics Faculty.
All rooms are networked and so able to access the extensive and growing range of software and information resources housed on our servers. All members of staff have laptops and almost all classrooms have a PC.
The Curriculum Leader is supported by an Assistant Curriculum Leader and two other full time teachers of ICT.
Key Stage three assessment descriptors are attached below. The “learning pathway” (e.g. 8-9) indicates the likely GCSE grade that a student may expect at the end of year 11, based upon both their current attainment and year of study.