The Vision of our department at Shaftesbury school is that our students feel that science educates them: to reason, think, experiment, understand, cope, progress, understand the modern world.
We have 12 science teachers, two technicians and a learning mentor within our department. Amongst the teaching staff, there are specialists in the three disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics at both KS4 and KS5.
In Yr 7 and 8 students follow a scheme of work built around the new KS3 National Curriculum. The department uses Exploring Science resources by Longman to support this. In Yr 9 the students follow purpose designed units in Biology, Chemistry and Physics to prepare them for the transition from KS3 into KS4. Throughout KS3 there is a focus on practical and research skills and an emphasis on how Science is relevant to student’s lives and the philosophy associated with ‘Working scientifically’.
At Key Stage 4 students follow the AQA Combined Science: Trilogy GCSE course (8464) in Year 10 and Year 11. Students are placed into teaching groups in line with the department’s setting policy. The curriculum opportunities are widened with both GCSE Psychology and GCSE Biology (8461), GCSE Chemistry (8462) and GCSE Physics (8463) as optional subjects to complement this universal provision. We now have two classes of GCSE separate scientists and as a consequence, there has been a substantial increase in the number of students going on to study the Sciences further at Post 16.
In Year 12 and 13 students can continue studying OCR Biology A (H420), OCR Chemistry A (H432) and OCR Physics A (H556). Also available is the opportunity to study Psychology and BTEC Nationals Applied Science (2016). Each student is provided with their own copy of the relevant course textbook and taught by experienced subject specialists.