0R7A4064 (2)

Curriculum - Statement of Intent

GBHS Intent

At Great Baddow High School our curriculum encapsulates our school motto ‘Always striving for higher things’ enabling learners to progressively learn skills, develop qualities, understanding and knowledge to become confident, resilient, successful young adults. 
Our carefully designed and broad curriculum offers balance, support and opportunity; students build on prior learning and strive to take next steps; broadening their minds, skills and developing personal qualities. The pathways we offer allow students to reach their full potential facilitating academic success in addition to developing rounded citizens who relish challenge and decision making. 

We pride ourselves on the activities, trips and experiences that wrap around our curriculum and are a fundamental aspect of the educational experience our young learners have at GBHS. 

We aim to inspire, excite and engage students in their learning and the world around them fostering a culture of achievement and aspiration for all. 

Learning at GBHS

In order to fulfil these ideals, our five-year progressive curriculum model requires learners to engage with a wide range of subjects in Key Stage 3. At Key Stage 4 learners are able to personalise their curriculum, furthering their knowledge and passion through subject selection in addition to continuing the study of the core subjects. 

You can read more about how the curriculum is organised and discover a more detailed overview of each subject area’s rationale in the individual subject pages. 


The school week consists of twenty-five one hour periods, together with tutor/assembly time. In Years 7-9 the subjects studied are as follows: mathematics, English, science, modern foreign languages, history, geography, physical education, computer science, design and technology, music, art and design, drama, religion, philosophy and ethics, and lessons for life. 
Years 10 and 11 are regarded as Key Stage 4 and a wide range of option subjects is on offer to students, in addition to the statutory ‘core’ curriculum. The school has a large Sixth Form and we offer an extensive choice of A Levels and BTEC courses. 

Years 7 and 8

The Year 7 and 8 curriculum serves a clear purpose in every subject at Great Baddow High School. Curriculum teams plan their schemes of work to ensure they deliver the content of the national Programme of Study, and that high challenge, engagement and enquiry are at the heart of learning. Reading is of paramount important at GBHS; reading time is built into our curriculum provision; our library resources support learning across the whole curriculum. 
The Key stage 3 curriculum facilitates young learner’s skills and qualities both academic and creative. The curriculum readies learners for success in British society and broadens their understanding of the wider world and a multitude of skills developed. From the start of a learner’s journey in Year 7 their educational experiences from primary school are built upon, embedded and extended. 
Alongside Mathematics, English, Sciences and Physical Education, Year 7 students study a broad range of subjects that include Art, Drama, Music, Computing, Design and Food Technology to ensure the curriculum facilitates the building blocks and love for learning in academic, creative and vocational subjects. We give significant curriculum time to Humanities subjects and Modern Foreign Languages; we encourage a high proportion of pupils to pursue the English Baccalaureate pathway in future years. Students study German or Spanish in Year 7, students who demonstrate an aptitude for languages study both German and Spanish in Year 8 and 9. A small number of pupils who require additional support with learning specifically in English and maths follow a bespoke timetable which gives them access to a similar range of subjects as their peers but provides the opportunity to focus on literacy and numeracy and humanities in a smaller focus group. 
Class groups are organised into two ‘bands’ of parallel sets, promoting high expectations for all groups. Pupils access the full spectrum of subjects in Year 7 and 8 in ability sets with the creative subjects, computer science and personal development being taught in mixed-ability groupings. 
Beyond the classroom, we aim to open the door to a wide range of experiences. All subjects provide additional learning contexts including annual school productions and high-performing sports teams. You can find more information on the subject pages. 

Year 9

The curriculum is carefully structured to provide a strong foundation and platform for selecting and studying at KS4; whilst encouraging and enabling learners to develop their love for learning in an environment where other learners share the same passion and challenge is high. 
Students follow creative pathways where they wish to develop skills, knowledge and their passion. Alongside this creative learning, students continue to develop and embed a broad range of skills, knowledge and understanding, foundations for success at KS4. This includes the continuation of a language and the further development of ‘Basics with Excellence’ and Learning to Learn skills. 

Years 10 & 11

Through the options process, we meet the statutory national requirements and aim to provide a personalised curriculum. For us, this means giving our pupils as much choice and flexibility as possible, whilst ensuring they follow examination courses that lead to positive outcomes and give them access to Post-16 opportunities. Pupils are supported in their decision making when selecting options, both parents and students are fully guided to a ‘route’ according to their ability and aspirations and are asked to choose up to three Options subjects available on that route. 
All students study BTEC Digital Information Technology at GBHS. We feel that preparing our students to be responsible, able and safe in our technological world is imperative this course and the additional e-safety curriculum provides them with that platform. 
A range of Vocational Qualifications are available as an Options route. We allow the same amount of curriculum time to Vocational Qualifications as GCSE courses to allow pupils the experience of exciting and relevant work-based projects alongside the assessed content. Please see the Options page for more information on the qualifications we offer on each route. 
Our Learning to Learn programme continues to support students at KS4 in their ability to study, digest and utilise the knowledge and skills they have learnt. This programme is revised and developed each year to meet the needs of the cohort. We fully support students throughout the school holidays providing conducive working spaces to study. 
The decision to maintain a two-year Key Stage four is in keeping with our principles of delivering a broad and balanced curriculum. The Great Baddow high School curriculum gives teachers scope to embed depth and love of learning and to breed a culture for success whilst covering the content required for terminal assessment. 

Basics with Excellence

‘Basics with excellence’ is a thread that runs through the curriculum and is a focus in devoted registration time. The Basics with Excellence approach aims to develop vocabulary, reading skills, extended writing, problem solving, numeracy skills.

Alongside this ‘learning to learn’ is established throughout the curriculum, students are explicitly taught ways to effectively use their long-term memory in addition to how to retrieve and recall with a reliant mindset.  

Further Information

Parents in Years 7-10 are invited to Curriculum Information Evenings on an annual basis and information from these events is made available on Edulink for reference.

However, if you require any further information regarding the curriculum, please do not hesitate to contact us by email at admin@gbhs.co.uk or by phone 01245 265821 and we will ensure you are directed to the most appropriate member of staff.

Latest News & Twitter

Students Celebrate A Level Results at Great Baddow High Scho...
18th Aug 2022
Latest News

Students Celebrate A Level Results at Great Baddow High School

The students at Great Baddow High School have achieved an excellent set of results across a full spectrum of A Level and vocational courses. We are incredibly proud how our students have responded to the challenges of the last two years and their determination, resilience and commitment has been rewarded with qualifications that provide pathways to further success. All students have gained either a place to study at university, or are going to follow an apprenticeship course or enter the world of employment. We are celebrating the success of all students, but notable individual achievements include; Matt L: achieved A*, A*, A, A and will be studying Mechanical Engineering at Loughborough University. Jenny R:  achieved A*, A*, A, A and will be studying Psychology at Bath University. James L: achieved A*, A, A, B and will study Mathematical Physics at Nottingham University. Alex H: achieved A*, A, A, B and will study Theology at Durham University. George C: achieved Distinction * (D*), D*, D* in Btec Sport and an A Level grade B in Geography and will be studying Sport at Bath University. Students gained fantastic results across a range of A Level and vocational courses with exceptional outcomes in our core subjects, specialist areas of Science and Sport and all of our vocational subjects. Our students will be leaving us as well rounded and highly qualified young adults and we are excited about their future. Well done and good luck to everyone. Paul Farmer Headteacher
Read Full Article
We Will Rock You - WHAT A WEEK!!!
1st Jul 2022
Latest News

We Will Rock You - WHAT A WEEK!!!

Well, what a week it has been! Our We Will Rock You cast performed one matinee to Year 6 students, three matinees to Year 5 students and three evening shows! All in all, the cast have performed to almost 1000 people in one week! This year's show was particularly special, having not been able to produce a performance since COVID. The resilience, dedication and commitment our students have demonstrated since their first rehearsal four months ago has been astounding. An incredible amount of work goes into producing a large-scale production and an enormous amount of effort from people behind the scenes. The performers have shown just how much the arts impacts their lives and how crucial it is for their own well-being. Our cast are from Years 7 through to Year 12, with students running the backstage area and the lighting and projections. Year 12 student, Lottie G, choreographed the entire production whilst juggling her PPE exams and a World Cup Dance Challenge in Spain. There were a lot of tears at the end of the final night, from staff as well as the students! These experiences last a lifetime and will never be forgotten by those involved. Our students really are super-stars in the making and to see them shine on stage is a very humbling moment for all of us who have been part of this incredible journey. Thank you to the cast, crew and all of the students and parents who came to watch the show. We are the champions!
Read Full Article
24th Jun 2022
Latest News

GBHS Celebrates Success at District Sports During National Sports...

This week, Great Baddow High School were delighted to send a large cohort of our students to compete at District Sports - a huge event in the school calendar and highly competitive. As ever we enjoyed some tremendous successes both at team and individual level and would like to congratulate everyone that took part. Results Boys Year 7 – 2nd Year 8 – 1st Year 9 – 1st Year 10/11 – 1st Relay Cup – 1st Overall Boys – 1st Girls Year 7 – 4th Year 8 – 1st Year 9 – 5th Year 10/11 – 1st Relay Cup – 3rd Overall Girls – 1st We had twenty-eight students who were named District Champions and we had two new District records in the Year 10 girls 3000m and the Year 8 girls relay. Further sports news this week includes our U13 girls football team who finished 2nd in the Sisters ‘n’ Sport National Football Final and congratulations to Katarina in Year 10 who executed two excellent routines in the Regional Trampoline Finals with a very high score of 80.31. National Sports Week This week also saw students taking part in National Sports Week, which, as a school that specialises in sport, we like to recognise every year. To support this national event, our sports department have run sessions on Strength and Conditioning, Parkour, Judo, Volleyball, Tchoukball, Dodgeball, Kurling and Dragonball to provide our students with the opportunity to experience a range of alternative sports.  
Read Full Article
GBHS Students Practice Spanish Language Skills in Seville
22nd Jun 2022
Latest News

GBHS Students Practice Spanish Language Skills in Seville

On 14th June 2022, Mrs Barkway, Mrs Whitnall, Mrs Farmer, Mr Dixon and Mr Jackson accompanied forty Year 9 students on a four day residential trip to Seville, Spain. Despite the extreme heat, the students did us proud and had many opportunities to show off their Spanish language skills. On the first evening, they saw a flamenco show with classic Sevillanas (dances) being performed, accompanied by the Spanish guitar. They also got to sample some tapas. The second day was a full on walking tour of the city, with a quest along the way, where students had to use their Spanish to answer clues and piece together puzzles. Congratulations due to the winning team ‘ Sobresaliente’ and second place went to ‘Sebilla’. After a tapas lunch, they visited the famous cathedral and climbed ‘La Giralda’ bell tower; thirty-two floors to climb but an amazing panoramic view of the city as a reward. Some students also got to visit the tomb of Christopher Columbus (Cristóbal Colón) who is laid to rest there. Day three took them along the river (el río Guadalquivir) on a boat trip along it’s length, seeing lots of Seville’s famous sights. Thursday was a national holiday in Spain, Corpus Christi and so the streets were decorated with religious altars and red and gold decoration and a procession carrying the Virgin Mary through the streets to the cathedral. The last day included a visit to the bull ring. Their guide showed them around ‘la plaza de toros’ and was very informative on the customs and traditions that ‘la corrida’ is based upon. The staff we were extremely proud of our students and the way in which they represented the school.  
Read Full Article