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St Bede's and St Joseph's Catholic College


Curriculum Intent

Our College curriculum is unique. While many schools are driven by examination results and league table position as the main criteria for their success, our ethos is focused on the care, support and challenge we provide to each individual throughout their years with us and, for each individual, the curriculum intent is designed to achieve three elements:

• a reflective understanding of the Catholic faith, enabling them to put that faith into action through leadership, serving others in a meaningful way
• an academic and inquisitive curiosity about our world which develops each student as an independent learner and maximises their opportunities in life beyond College
• the ability to work together, bringing out their team skills by participating as fully as possible in the many clubs, societies, trips and activities on offer.

We call these elements Ecclesia (Church and Community), Scholastica (Academic Development) and Olympia (Participation) and by focusing on all three we support our students to grow into

Happy, Confident, Spiritually Awake Life-Long Learners

who will become well-rounded and well-educated contributors to society. In this way, we fulfil our curriculum intent, as stated by Dr Arthur Hinsley, the first headteacher of St Bede’s Grammar School, in 1900:

To provide for our students a thorough training in the knowledge and principles of the Catholic faith, combined with a secular education equal in every respect to the best public schools in England.

Curriculum Implementation

To implement this intent and to ensure that all students benefit in a coherently planned way, we deliver, track, reward and celebrate all three elements at Key Stage 3 through our Christus Lumen Gentium Diploma. This initiative aims to build a sustainable culture of excellence, giving students access to a wide, rich set of experiences, with many opportunities to develop their talents and interests. Further information on the Diploma can be found here: Diploma details

The Scholastica strand is implemented through our five Divisions:

• St Julian of Norwich (English, History, Media, Social Sciences)
• St Teresa of Avila (Maths, PE, Sport, Business)
• St Catherine of Siena (Science, Technology, ICT)
• St Therese of Lisieux (RE, Geography, Citizenship, Politics, Law, Vocational)
• St Hildegard of Bingen (MFL, Performing Arts, Art, Photography)


Our academic curriculum maintains a high level of ambition for all students. We offer the full range of subjects across a three-year Key Stage 3, providing the opportunity for all to study a strong academic core.

At Key Stage 3, students are divided into Progress Plan Pathways based on a combination of the Standardised Age Scores achieved in Key Stage 2 SATs at the end of Year 6 and the CAT4 tests which they sit with us at the beginning of Year 7. To ensure we are as ambitious as possible, where the two scores differ, we always allocate students to a Progress Plan Pathway based on the higher score. To ensure appropriate student progress, Progress Plans for each Pathway specify exactly what a student is expected to know and be able to do in each unit of work. Wherever practicable, these expectations are linked back to knowledge, understanding and skills learned at Key Stage 2 and what they must develop to succeed at GCSE.

Further information on the key Stage 3 curriculum can be found here: https://sbsj.co.uk/ks3

At Key Stage 4, students are again divided into four personalised pathways suited to their ability profile, with the majority able to access the EBacc offer, whilst others pursue a mix of academic and vocational qualifications.

Further information on the Key Stage 4 curriculum can be found here: https://sbsj.co.uk/key-stage-4

The curriculum is implemented through a two-week timetable of 50 lessons, 8 House Welcomes and 2 House Developments

Curriculum Model