De ferrers academy image 7

Curriculum Overview

Our curriculum is:  

• ambitious for all  

• coherently planned and sequenced  

• successfully adapted, designed and developed for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities.  

All our learners experience a three-year Key Stage 3 that provides them with opportunities  to engage with a wide range of subjects and experiences. This enables them to access  Key Stage 4 provision that is rigorous and includes a broad range of academic, vocational  and creative subjects alongside values education.  

For our Post-16 provision, we are proud of our thriving and exciting environments in which  to study. Students are able to learn in a friendly and supportive environment where we  have the highest expectations for all of our students. We provide a diet of both academic  and vocational courses to set our students on the pathway to success to university,  employment or higher level apprenticeships.  

In order to support our intent, there is a Trust Leader programme. We have 17 outstanding  professionals who lead the curriculum creation and sharing of best practice across the  Trust in their specialist subject area, many kid them based at The de Ferrers Academy.  This has led to improvements in the quality of curriculum development and methods of  assessment

The de Ferrers Academy curriculum has been developed alongside the agreed The de Ferrers Trust curriculum and our shared values. It has been designed to help provide the best platform for achievement for the young people in our care, as outlined in the Trust mission statement: “To ensure that all the children and young people in our care have the opportunity to fulfil their potential through achieving highly, regardless of their ability or background.” 

Our education ethos is based on:

  • Placing positive relationships at the heart of what we do
  • Having high expectations of our students at all times
  • Ensuring that excellent learning and teaching is our core activity
  • Promoting independence, equality, resilience and consideration to others
  • Valuing the support and contribution to all members of our community

We believe that excellent academic achievement comes from motivating students through respect and positive relationships to engage in lessons, challenging their knowledge and encouraging the fulfilment of academic potential. Our extremely dedicated team of specialist teachers has strong subject knowledge and understands our students’ learning needs. We deliver a broad and balanced curriculum that inspires and motivates students, making learning engaging and enjoyable.

Our core Trust values “Work Hard, Be Kind, Choose Wisely” are the foundation of our Academy and the communities that we serve, to ensure that all students enjoy high quality learning experiences, enabling them to achieve their full potential and go on to lead successful, happy and healthy lives

For our students we aim to:

● Create excellent learning and enrichment experiences 

● Provide a broad and appropriate curriculum, offering multiple pathways to achieve the  knowledge, skills, attitudes and ultimately qualifications required for successful and fulfilling futures.

● Support every student to be the best they can be

We believe in the importance of providing appropriate learning experiences for all students of all abilities. High quality teaching, which is differentiated and personalised where appropriate, should be available for all students. At the heart of the work of every academy class is a continuous cycle of planning, teaching and assessing which takes account of the wide range of abilities, aptitudes and interests of students. The majority of students will learn and progress within these arrangements, but where relevant, additional support and planning will inform these cycles.

If you require any additional information, please contact:

Andy Jones (Vice Principal - T&L/Curriculum) via e-mail:




Please click below to expand our curriculum information in each key stage:

Dove Campus

Students at the Academy follow a 3-year Key Stage 3 program in Year 7, Year 8 and Year 9.


Some students in Year 7 and Year 8 that require extra support will have more flexible timetables and sessions as part of an Alternative Curriculum taught in a dedicated hub, allowing them to benefit from additional Literacy and Numeracy lessons.

Key Stage 4

Students in current Year 9 continue to extend their knowledge and develop their skills as part of the transition towards Key Stage 4 subject choices. They will choose their options after Christmas in Year 9, as part of the Pathways process. There is a strong focus on subjects that form the English Baccalaureate. 

(A) Year 9:

(B) YEARS 10/11:

All students follow a core of: English (4h), Maths (4h), Science (5h), PE (1h), Values or Religious Studies (1h). 

Students may study GCSE English Literature & GCSE English Language, GCSE Mathematics and either GCSE Combined Science or Triple Science (GCSE Biology, GCSE Chemistry, GCSE Physics) - the additional component for Triple Science is currently taught to set 1 students in each band at the end of Year 10/Year 11. From September 2022, Y10 students in set 1/2 in each band will be able to study Triple Science with an extra hour allocated to Science per week.

Students also study some additional option subjects (3h each), depending upon their pathway.

A wide variety of GCSE and vocational option choices are available:

GCSE History

GCSE Art & Design

GCSE Geography

BTEC Art & Design

GCSE Business Studies

GCSE Drama


GCSE Music

GCSE DT: Food preparation & Nutrition

GCSE French

GCSE DT: Textiles route

CACHE Child Development

GCSE DT: Graphics route

CACHE Health & Social Care

GCSE DT: All materials route

GCSE Economics

GCSE Computer Science

NCFE Business & Enterprise

CNAT Information Technology

GCSE Film Studies

GCSE Religious Studies

GCSE Citizenship

Amost all students will take GCSE History or Geography (studnets can choose to take both), some students do not have to choose an MFL option, but will choose  an additional option.

A small number of students may take less options and instead spend additional time on Work Related Learning, Vocational skills, etc.


Students in the sixth form will choose 3 (occasionally 4) subjects from a wide list of traditional and applied A level courses, as well as vocational options:

  • A level English Language
  • A level English Literature
  • A level Mathematics
  • A level Further Mathematics
  • A level Biology
  • A level Chemistry
  • A level Physics
  • CTEC Applied Science (level 3)
  • A level French **
  • A level DT: Product Design
  • A level DT: Textiles **
  • A level History
  • A Level Geography
  • BTEC Travel & Tourism **
  • A level Sociology
  • A level Psychology
  • A level Government & Politics
  • A level PE
  • BTEC Sport **
  • A level Art & Design
  • BTEC Art & Design (level 3 – double option)
  • A level Music **
  • A level Photography
  • A level Theatre Studies
  • A level Religious Studies
  • A level Business Studies
  • A level Economics
  • BTEC Business Studies (level 3)
  • A level ICT
  • A level Applied ICT
  • BTEC Creative Media (level 3)
  • CTEC Health & Social (single Introductory Diploma or double Technical Diploma)

Please note:

All A levels run as full 2 year courses (no AS courses).

** Some subjects may not run every year if there is insufficient demand 

Each subject is timetabled for 5 hours per week, with additional time identified for enhancement (PE, mentoring, skill development). 

Some sixth form students may also take examinations in AS Critical Thinking or choose to take an Extended Project Qualification (EPQ).


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16 19 Study Programmes.192551203 19th Jan 2022 Download
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