A Broad and Balanced Curriculum

The Headlands School Curriculum

At Headlands School, we are passionate about the importance of providing all students with a broad, balanced and challenging curriculum offer that enables them to study not only the more traditional subjects of Maths, English, Science, History and Geography, but also gives all students the option to study a modern foreign language and Computer Science, as well as the more creative subjects such as Technology, Art and Design, Music and Drama which over recent years, have found themselves squeezed out of some school curriculums.

In addition, every student in Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 at Headlands School has core PE, an opportunity to engage in some physical exercise which has consistently been shown to benefit both a student’s physical wellbeing as well as their emotional wellbeing.

At Headlands School, we believe passionately in a curriculum that caters for the needs, aptitudes and interests of all our students; a curriculum that is as diverse, individual and inspiring as each of them.

Our fundamental aim is to provide a curriculum that will ensure that when a student leaves us at the end of KS4 or KS5, they do so in the knowledge that they have been equipped with the necessary skills to enable them to experience success, fulfil their potential and ultimately realise both their hopes and aspirations.

The School Day

Every day, we have five periods of 60-minute lessons making 25 periods in the week.

Due to Covid-19, we have had to alter our school timetable from September 2020. Years 7,10 and 11 now follow one timetable, with Years 8, 9 and Sixth Form following another.

Years 7, 9 and Sixth Form Years 8, 10 and 11
8.25am Movement bell 8.25am Movement bell
8.30am – 8.50am Tutor / Assembly 8.30am – 8.50am Tutor / Assembly
8.50am – 9.50am Period  1 8.50am – 9.50am Period  1
9.50am – 10.05am Break 9.50am – 10.50am Period 2
10.05am – 11.05am Period 2 10.50am – 11.05am Break
11.05am – 12.05pm Period 3 11.05am – 12.05pm Period 3
12.05pm – 12.45pm Lunch 12.05pm – 1.05pm Period 4
12.45pm – 1.45pm Period 4 1.05pm – 1.45pm Lunch
1.45pm – 2.45pm Period 5 1.45pm – 2.40pm Period 5
2.45pm End of school day 2.40pm End of school day

Extra-Curricular Clubs and Activities

Beyond the official end of the school day, we continue to run numerous clubs and activities. These have all been organised to protect our year group bubbles and in line with government guidance to ensure they are Covid safe.

All students are given the opportunity to participate and they are actively encouraged to do so.

Find out more about our extra-curricular clubs and activities here.

Tutor Time

At the beginning of each morning, there is a form period of 20 minutes where students spend time with their form tutor.

We consider this to be an invaluable part of the school day as it is designed to ensure that all students are equipped, prepared and feel supported for the day ahead of them.

As part of their tutor programme, each class in Years 7 – 10 has a text which the staff and students read and explore together in designated sessions designed to promote a love of reading and encourage them to think about a number of challenging issues.

In addition, as part of our commitment to developing our students’ numeracy skills, we also run a weekly ‘Maths Ninja’ programme which sees students competing against the clock to earn their very own ninja belts; it continues to prove both popular with our students and highly competitive.

For our Year 11 and Sixth Form students, there is a bespoke tutor programme in place which is designed to not only support them in their academic studies but also in their preparations for life beyond school.

All students across the school have a rolling PSHE lesson that takes place during a different period every week, the content of which is bespoke to each year group.

Headlands School Curriculum Policy


Our KS3 Curriculum

Key Stage 3 is designed to build on the students’ experiences and successes in Key Stage 2 whilst also providing a solid foundation for Key Stage 4 where they will effectively tailor much of their own curriculum through the options they choose to study.

In KS3, they are exposed to the full range of subjects offered in KS4 so they are then able to make informed choices when the time comes for them to select their option subjects.

In KS3, Year 7, Year 8 and Year 9 follow broadly the same curriculum which encompasses a variety of academic subjects and practical-based subjects.

All students study a modern foreign language but half the year group study French whereas the other half study German. We adopted this model in September 2018 to ensure that those students wishing to go on to study a foreign language beyond KS3 have a good grounding in one of the options on offer here at Headlands School, again reflecting the broad nature of our curriculum.

Our KS4 Curriculum

In Key Stage 4, students must study GCSEs in English, Maths and Science – they then choose which subjects they would like to study alongside the core curriculum, selecting their preferences from our carefully planned option blocks.

We believe strongly in the importance of providing our students with choice whilst also ensuring that they are guided to make informed decisions that will enable them to achieve their goals and aspirations in the future.

In 2010, the government introduced the EBacc, a combination of subjects that the government thinks is important for young people to study at GCSE including English Language and Literature, Maths, the Sciences, History or Geography and a language.

By 2025, the government wants to see 90% of students studying the EBacc subjects and therefore, this ambition is reflected in our KS4 curriculum offer.

However, we also recognise that many of our students are passionate about studying more creative and practical-based subjects and therefore, all students still have the option to select to study at least one of these subjects as part of their bespoke curriculum.

Years 10 and 11

At Headlands, we are ambitious for our students and whilst we believe in the value of the EBacc pathway, we also believe in retaining breadth and balance for all students within our curriculum offer.

Our Key Stage 4 students study three option subjects and we are proud of the fact that as well as the more traditional EBacc subjects, open to all students, we also offer our KS4 students a wide range of options such as: NCFE PE, BTEC Music, GCSE Drama, Film Studies, Technology and Art.

Year 10

The current Year 10 study five lessons of English, four lessons of Maths and five lessons of Science; RS is also delivered across the year to all students.

Year 11

The current Year 11 study five lessons of English, five lessons of Maths and five lessons of Science. RS is also delivered across the year to all students.

Breadth and Diversity

To illustrate the breadth and diversity of the choices available to our students, below are some real examples of our students’ experiences:

The examples above are by no means exhaustive. However, they hopefully provide a flavour of the options available to our students, which is something that we are extremely proud to celebrate.


SMSC & British Values