Our Curriculum Vision

The governors and staff at Cullompton Community College believe that the purpose of our curriculum is to inspire our young people and develop their aspirations. By following a rich, engaging and ambitious curriculum and studying and grasping a broad range of diverse subjects, our students will discover their unique talents, appreciate their aptitude for truly independent learning, and feel valued as extraordinary individuals of a vibrant community.

Intent of our Curriculum

“You have to know the past so that you can understand the present”

Carl Sagan

What do our learners need to learn and in what order should it be taught?

We have four key drivers for our curriculum intent:

  • Personal empowerment

  • Citizenship

  • Employment

  • Transmission of cultural capital

At Cullompton Community College, our intent for our curriculum is to ensure that all our learners grow, have high aspirations and flourish in these ambitions. We believe our curriculum should provide an holistic way of learning that encourages curiosity, a love of learning and critical thinking.  We believe our curriculum should develop resilience in our learners equipping them with the knowledge, skills and understanding to be responsible global citizens with positive life chances. We believe that our curriculum should ensure a progressive learning journey with a strong focus on the key concepts within subject disciplines so that we build on our learners’ experiences at primary school, consider our local context and learners’ needs and fills in any gaps, and prepares them for a successful transition to post-16.  We want our curriculum to be full of joy and inclusive of all our learners regardless of gender, colour, creed, prior attainment, background or disadvantage.  Our curriculum intends to reflect values in our society that promote personal development, spirituality, equality and equity of opportunity, economic well-being, healthy lifestyles and democracy.   It will allow our learners to live successful and happy lives in a culturally diverse modern world. Our curriculum will contribute to our students’ intellectual, moral, spiritual, aesthetic, creative, emotional and physical development.  Our key principles underpinning our curriculum are that it is:

  • Balanced = all subjects are equally valuable and valued.

  • Rigorous = we develop subject disciplinary habits of mind.

  • Coherent = we make connections within subjects and between subjects and the totality of the students’ experiences mutually reinforce each other.

  • Vertically integrated = this refers to progression.  What do learners already know? How do you build on this knowledge?  How does this feed into what needs to be learned later?

  • Appropriate = we provide the right level of challenge according to individual need.

  • Focussed = focus on the big ideas.  What do we leave out?

  • Relevant = situational interest.  Good teachers get students interested in things they didn’t know they were interested in.

(Dylan William “Principled curriculum design” October 2013)

Substantive knowledge = key facts, concepts and phenomena we want our students to master.
Disciplinary knowledge = the big ideas.
Core curriculum = the fundamentals.
Hinterland curriculum = contextual, the background knowledge, telling a coherent narrative, not a summary of the narrative.

Curriculum Design Key principles

Implementation of our Curriculum

“If you do not know history then you do not know anything.  You are a leaf that does not know it’s part of a tree.”
Michael Crichton

How should our curriculum be designed, over time, to maximise the likelihood that our learners will remember and connect the steps they’ve been taught?

Cognitive Load Theory - some insights

At Cullompton Community College we use a progression model for the curriculum which builds on prior learning, ensuring comprehension of substantive and disciplinary knowledge with regular opportunities for interleaving and deliberate retrieval practice to ensure that knowledge is profoundly retained and not merely encountered.  We will ensure the core curriculum is underpinned by the hinterland curriculum.

Our well-trained specialist curriculum teams work collaboratively to plan and deliver schemes of learning that carefully construct  a coherent curriculum narrative that is subject specific ensuring that links can be made within topics and between topics. The schemes of learning progressively build our students’ knowledge, skills and understanding over time and assessment for and of learning is integral to our work as reflective practitioners who put our students at the heart of what we teach and how we teach it.  

We teach English Language, English Literature, Maths, Science, French/German, History, Geography, RE, Music, Computing, PE, Art and Design, Drama and Design and Technology as separate subjects in KS3 because we believe in the importance of a broad, balanced and diverse curriculum. The KS4 curriculum has English Language, English Literature, Maths, Science, History or Geography, PE and RE as the core.  Students can select their curriculum, based on independent, impartial careers advice and guidance from French/German, Music, History, Geography, Triple Science, Art and Design, Design and Technology, BTEC Performing Arts, Drama, GCSE PE, Sports Science, Computer Science and Creative i Media. All our teachers are specialist teachers and this is very important to us as a school. Every subject area is well-resourced and teachers use a variety of innovative strategies, including technology,  to accelerate students’ learning. Our curriculum is differentiated for different learners but aims to scaffold up so that, through slow teaching techniques, students can fully grasp the curriculum. We teach Citizenship, Personal, Social and Health Education in tutor time and there are detailed lesson plans and resources so that the curriculum is implemented well.

Rosenshine's Principles of Instruction

Impact of our Curriculum

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”

Pablo Picasso

How can we ensure that our students are learning the content outlined in our curriculum?

At Cullompton Community College, our students will have developed detailed knowledge and understanding across the curriculum and will achieve high standards with excellent outcomes.  We will know that we are delivering a high quality education to our students because this will be reflected in final outcomes at GCSE. Our students will be ready for the next stage of their education and they will go on to destinations that meet their ambitions and aspirations.  Using a range of quantitative and qualitative measures, such as lesson observations, Learning Walks, data analysis, discussions with curriculum leaders, attendance data, destinations data, student voice, behaviour and conduct data, and the standard of work produced by our students, we will be able to evidence the impact of our curriculum intent and implementation.  Regular assessments, both formative and summative, will check students’ understanding and learning to inform future planning, address any misconceptions and fill in any gaps and to ensure that students are ready to move on to the next stage.

For general enquiries about our curriculum or for further information, please email Amanda Farmer