Maths and ICT
Mathematics is taught to all students up to GCSE level and then offered to the most able mathematicians for AS/A level. The department is introducing a new qualification this year at Key Stage 5 called Use of Mathematics which is equivalent to an A-Level and can be studied by students who would like to extend their understanding in Mathematics beyond GCSE but are not quite up to the standard required for A-Level Mathematics and A-Level Further Mathematics. Students who choose to take Further Mathematics have to study A-Level Mathematics as well.
The department is staffed well and the results gained are regularly some of the best in the school. Students enjoy lessons and are taught using a range of techniques including teacher lead activities, investigations, group work and enrichment tasks. Setting is introduced from the beginning of Year 7 and students are taught in ability groups with a teaching programme that allows movement to take place between the sets. The faculty also contributes to cross curricular lessons within the school.
The teachers in mathematics regularly assess the students and track their progress against their targets giving thorough feedback through the marking of homework using the school policy of giving comments on 'What Went Well' (WWW) and 'Even Better If' (EBI). The students are given topics tests throughout the year as well as being formally examined at the end of each year and all of these tests are analysed with the students at question level to highlight strengths and weaknesses
Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
The aim of the ICT department is to introduce the students to the exciting world of ICT. The technology world is ever changing and as a department we look to update our curriculum to match the needs of the students. The Key Stage 3 programme is designed to in traduce the students to new topics, such as Programming, Animation, Networking, E-Safety and the use of industry standard software.
The curriculum has been recently updated to incorporate the need to deliver Computer Science, as a result the department are looking to create links with Primary Schools and Local Businesses to aid the transition from Primary School, through Secondary school and into work. They will learn vital skills to prepare them for the demands of the wider world and prepare them to continue with ICT at KS4, deciding on their own path through ICT, whether it be through vocational subjects or GCSE Computer Science.
ICT at KS4 is an option subject for students and currently the students can study BTEC First in IT and Creative Technology. The students are taught over 3 lessons a fortnight. This course is based on 75% coursework and an exam worth 25% of the final grade. The aim of the course is to introduce the students to the most up to date technologies and get the students to use their creative sides to make Apps, Websites and Animation. There will be further development when the department introduce GSCE Computer Science in September 2014.
At KS5, currently the department offer a BTEC National in IT. The students will complete six units of work over the two years. The units will develop the students understanding of how to use ICT in the Business world, with links being developed with local companies.