Curriculum

At Hillcrest we have very high expectations of our students. Great emphasis is placed on hard work, achievement and high standards of behaviour.

KEY STAGE 3

NATIONAL CURRICULUM

At Hillcrest School we combine an academically rigorous curriculum with the latest in digital technologies and developments in classroom practice; we work to develop effective, independent learners ready to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing world. Students are provided with opportunities to develop their thinking skills, accelerated learning techniques, collaborative problem-solving skills, assessment for learning skills and effective use of Computing.

Hillcrest School also benefits from our membership of the Oaks collegiate teaching alliance. Students are supported by a team of well qualified, specialist teaching staff. The school also has a range of support and administrative staff who work with both students and teachers on a daily basis. The Hillcrest School curriculum meets the specifications of both the National Curriculum programmes of study and also the Birmingham Curriculum Statement.

All students follow the statutory National Curriculum, with many additional curriculum enrichment opportunities being met by our school curriculum. Over a two-week timetable, students follow courses with the following number of learning hours:

 

Year 7English 8 hours, Mathematics 8 hours, Science 6 hours, French 5 hours, Design & Technology 4 hours, Religious Education 2 hours, Geography 3 hours, History 3 hours, Physical Education 3 hours, Performing Arts (Dance and Drama) 2 hours, Music 2 hours, Art 2 hours, Computing 2 hours.
Year 8English 8 hours, Mathematics 8 hours, Science 6 hours, French 5 hours, Design & Technology 4 hours, Religious Education 2 hours, Geography 3 hours, History 3 hours, Physical Education 3 hours, Performing Arts (Dance and Drama) 2 hours, Music 2 hours, Art 2 hours, Computing 2 hours.

 

All students in Key Stage 3 also follow the Accelerated Reader programme, encouraging students to make rapid progress in the complexity of the reading materials they encounter. Students also experience whole-day learning experiences covering Personal and Social Development (PSD) and regular opportunities for Information, Advice, and Guidance (IAG) for Careers and Lifelong Learning.

For further information regarding our curriculum, please contact Miss S Khalid – Assistant Headteacher skhalid@hillcrest.bham.sch.uk

 

Key Stage 4 What Will The Curriculum Look Like?

There are a number of core subjects that the government requires all students to study, such as English, Mathematics, Science, Physical Education and Religious Education. Students also study French and either History or Geography.

In addition to the core, students make guided choices from a range of subjects including Art, Computing, Dance, Drama, Music, Business Studies and Design Technology. This ensures that we provide opportunities for different kinds of learning to suit the interests and abilities of individual students, whilst retaining a strong focus on academic subjects which will enable them to progress to further and higher education. We aim to give as many students as possible the opportunity to achieve the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) by the end of Year 11.

The EBacc is not a qualification in itself. It is a wrap-around award that recognises students’ achievements across a core of selected subjects. Students would be expected to attain between grades 9 to 5 in English, Mathematics, Science, a Modern Foreign Language, and either History or Geography.

The EBacc is highly regarded by colleges, sixth form, universities, other higher education institutions, and employers. Therefore, this award would be advantageous to students who are intent on further study for an Undergraduate Degree or equivalent.

 

  Year 9 Year 10 Year 11
English 8 Hours 8 Hours 9 Hours
Maths 8 Hours 8 Hours 9 Hours
Science 10 Hours 10 Hours 10 Hours
Physical Education 2 Hours 2 Hours 2 Hours
Religious Education 2 Hours 2 Hours N/A
French 5 hours 5 hours 5 Hours

 

Curriculum Allocations At Key Stage 4

For full details of the Key Stage 4 curriculum, including the GCSE, BTEC courses available to students in Years 9, 10 and 11, please click here.

 

The New Curriculum GCSE Equivalent Grading System

All students will be graded using the 0-99 Hillcrest grading system which uses the new GCSE 9-1 grades as its basis. Please refer to the table below for information on the new grading system.

 

Old GCSE Grading  New GCSE Grading  Hillcrest Points Banding
  9 98-99
A* 8 80-89
A 7 70-79
B 6 60-69
C

5

New Good Pass (DFE)

50-59
D 4 40-49
E 3 30-39
F 2 20-29
G 1 10-19

 

The Sixth Form

For information about our Sixth Form curriculum, in partnership with the Oaks Collegiate, please follow the links in the sixth form navigation above.

 

Computing

Computing is a very important part of education at Hillcrest. There are five fully equipped Computing rooms as well as banks of computers in subject areas, laptop trolleys, a Computing centre, ‘dotcom@hillcrest’, and a multi-media room. In Year 7 and 8, all students have two hours per fortnight of discrete Computing as well as using computers in various subject areas across the school.

For further information about any aspect of our curriculum, please contact Miss S Khalid – Assistant Headteacher for Curriculum, Assessment & Standards- at school.