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Curriculum - Overview

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Curriculum (2014) Key Points

  • The main aim is to raise standards
  • It has been designed to produce productive, creative and well educated students. 
  • All maintained schools will have to follow the new curriculum but Academies and Free Schools are exempt
  • The new curriculum is intended to be more challenging
  • The content is slimmer than the current curriculum
  • It focuses on essential core subject knowledge and skills such as essay writing and computer programming

Curriculum (2014) Key Facts

  • Schools are free to choose how they organise their school day, as long as the content of the National Curriculum programmes of study is taught to all pupils.
  • By the end of each key stage, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the matters, skills and processes specified in the relevant programmes of study.
  • The new National Curriculum identifies what to teach but not how to teach.
  • The new National Curriculum does not have levels of attainment, but expectations at each banding.
  • “Literacy” title has been replaced by ‘English’.
  • ‘ICT’ title is replaced by ‘Computing’
  • No PSHE or RE contained within the Curriculum 2014 (but still to be taught).
  • An Act of Daily Worship is expected in all schools.
  • In Maths there will be a greater emphasis on arithmetic, and the promotion of efficient written methods of long multiplication and division.  There will also be a more demanding content in fractions, decimals and percentages.
  • In Science there is a stronger focus on the importance of scientific knowledge and language and a greater emphasis on the core scientific concepts underpinning pupils’ understanding.  For the first time primary aged children will learn about evolution and inheritance.
  • The English programmes of study will embody higher standards of literacy.  Pupils will be expected to develop a stronger command of the written and spoken word.  Through the teaching of phonics pupils will be helped to read fluently.
  • The study of languages is compulsory in Key Stage 2.
  • The current ICT curriculum is replaced with a new computing curriculum with a much greater emphasis on computational thinking and practical programming skills.
  • It is essential to distinguish between the statutory National Curriculum and the whole school curriculum.  All schools must provide a curriculum that is broadly based, balanced and meets the needs of all pupils.
  • In other subjects and key stages there is a greater amount of time and flexibility for schools and teachers to design their curriculum and lessons by focusing only on the essential knowledge to be taught in each subject.
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