Information on KS4 Courses

Virtual Option Evening

Due to the guidelines we must follow relating to covid-19, it is not possible this year to invite you to our annual option evening. In the past this has been an event where students and their families can find out about the process we go through between now and September of Y10 to determine which courses the student will study. It is also an opportunity to find out some specifics about each individual course to help decide if a course would be one that the student would like to express an interest in, and subsequently apply for.

To ensure that all this information is available, staff have put together the materials below.  Please have a look through them to experience a “virtual” information evening.

Some materials are voiced presentations, some are mp4 video clips and others are mkv files. To view a voiced presentation, open the presentation and select "Slide Show" and "View from the beginning". To view an mp4 or mkv file, the link should open the file in your media player.  Please be patient, some files are large and may be slow to appear if multiple people are accessing them.

We hope you have found the materials informative. This, alongside the option process letter sent before half term, and the option booklet that your child should bring home between 9th and 13th November, will enable you to discuss different courses with your child and determine which they would like to express an interest in studying. The options booklet is available here (Publisher file).

If you feel you need some more information, please use the form (available here) to ask questions. We have divided this into three areas, questions about:

  • the option process, qualification types, grading systems or the EBacc
  • a core subject
  • an option course

We will put together a "Frequently Asked Questions" document from the responses to this form and share it with all parents before the expression of interest form deadline (11th December). Please bear in mind that individualised information will need to be discussed between the student and teachers in school time, and at this stage we are not asking students to apply for courses. We are asking them to tell us the five option courses that they are most interested in studying.

Please also be aware that:

  • All courses are open to all students (except in the case of languages where students must have studied the language to at least Y9 level previously)
  • All students need to study at least one EBacc qualification (Geography, History, Computer Science, French, German, Spanish)
  • To determine suitability for courses students and families need to reflect on the content of the course and personal preferences. In addition, grades on reports (issued 27 November) are forecasted grades for the end of Y11, and as such can be used as part of your consideration about the suitability of a course for your child.

In the spring term we will write to you explaining the application stage of this process. However, it is worth noting now that applications to any oversubscribed courses will be prioritised according to the students’ 5R’s reports in that subject (or the closest KS3 course). If there are students who are on a par with this criterion, we will look at 5Rs reports overall, the combination of subjects applied for and behaviour/attendance records to determine who is successful. If a student is not successful, they will be placed into their reserve course.