At The Ladder School we believe that the curriculum should match the needs of the learners it serves. A traditional mainstream model has not been able to meet the needs of the prospective students of The Ladder School, as they have become disengaged with education and are at the risk of exclusion.

The Ladder School prides itself on ensuring students have access to a broad and balance curriculum that fulfils the needs of the students and the demands of society to ensure that the students can prosper in the World of Work.

The Ladder School has taken the following approach to the curriculum;

All students will study English, Maths and Science. This will be considered the academic part of their schooling and this will take place in the first three hours in the day, which will make up their morning lessons. This will make up 55% of their education at The Ladder School. The remaining 45% of the learning time at The Ladder School will be focused on vocational courses and life skills. This will take place in the second half of the day. Students will participate in one hour of PE as our commitment to encouraging a healthy body and a healthy minds approach to school. The amount of time for PE will be reviewed when specialist facilities are built.

Number of Lessons for each Subject

Key Stage 4 (Y9-11)

Students will study English, Maths and Science at GCSE level and then three vocational courses (most of these courses are BTEC’s)

SubjectEnglishMathsScienceOption x3Core PEPSHE/Skills
Number of Hours555312.5

Key Stage 5 (Y12-13)

SubjectRe-sit EnglishRe-sit MathsOptionOptionOptionStudy Sessions
Number of Hours335554

Vocational options will be delivered as ‘pathways’ in a vertical system, this means that there will be mixed groups of year 9, 10 and 11 students studying a particular group of courses (see diagram below). In turn there will be a wider range of options to choose and potentially students might be able to complete courses sooner to have the option of studying additional courses or participate in a work placement opportunity within their area of interest.

Courses have been chosen to spark an area of interest in young people and offer them specialist opportunities that they might not get in a mainstream setting. Equally courses have been designed to complement what students may have succeeded in during their time in school to help them build on their success.

Whilst there is an aspect of choice not every course might be the first thing that a young person would choose to do, but this is a lesson that nothing is ever perfect! The courses on these pathways will be adjusted to the needs of the young people in each cohort and will reflect the courses that are recognised by the government and employers as courses that meet the needs of learners for them to succeed.

The pathways at The Ladder School are;

Curriculum Enrichment

We expect that all students enrich their learning beyond the classroom. The school has a wide range of extra-curricular activities. These extend students learning and social experiences and are linked to work done in the classroom. Most importantly employers are significant adults in the lives of students at the Ladder School and their input shapes both the school’s curriculum and the bespoke experiences of each individual student.

Careers Guidance

In addition to the work with employers embedded in the school’s curriculum all students engage in a wide range of work related activities including work experience, industry days and mock interviews.  As part of this each student receives a one to one consultation with an experienced independent professional from the business world who can give expert advice on each student’s CV, personal statement and personal presentation skills.