Our Curriculum

Teaching and learning, to us they’re everything

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Bedford High School Curriculum 2016-17

Please contact Mr Shelton to discuss anything further regarding our school curriculum. At Bedford High School we offer a broad and balanced curriculum designed to;

  • meet the needs and interests of all students
  • enable students to develop the knowledge, understanding, skills and qualities to enable them to become effective lifelong learners and happy and successful citizens
  • enable students to achieve academic success
  • build aspirations and prepare students for the next steps in their education
  • promote employability skills
  • meet statutory requirements


The following areas are developed in all year groups and across the curriculum;

Basics skills in literacy and numeracy;

  • Building Learning Power so that students develop the skills and attitudes required for educational success and employability.
  • Spiritual, Moral, Cultural, Mental and Physical Development (SMCMPD).
  • Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHE). 
  • Careers Education and Independent Advice & Guidance (CEIAG).
  • Business & Enterprise skills through links with a range of employers, distinct courses and enrichment activities.
  • Skills in using new technology.
  • Enrichment e.g. through themed learning days.
  • A range of extra-curricular provision.



In Years 7 and 8 students follow the National Curriculum. There is a strong focus on ensuring that all students develop basic skills in literacy and numeracy. The Accelerated Reader programme is used to boost all students’ reading skills. Literacy and numeracy intervention is provided for students who are working below expected standards in these areas. For example, these students are provided with an extra hour of literacy per week.

In KS3 students are generally grouped in sets based on prior attainment. There is the flexibility for students to change sets where beneficial.


In Year 9 there is increasing personalisation and choice as students begin to specialise in areas of interest or need. In addition to continuing to study core subjects of English, Maths and Science, and compulsory subjects such as PE, students choose five subjects from a wide range of options. Students are guided to follow appropriate pathways which will give them the best chance of success and prepare them for their next steps in education. Many students are encouraged to follow the English Baccalaureate pathway, studying GCSEs in Modern Foreign Languages, Humanities and, wherever possible, separate sciences of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.  Other students follow vocational courses alongside GCSEs. The opportunity to study a range of options subjects enables students to make appropriate and informed decisions about their final options choices towards the end of Year 9.

In Years 10 & 11 the curriculum for each student is refined and personalised further as the number of options subjects is reduced from five to three. In Year 11 students are entered for between 9 and 11 qualifications, mainly GCSEs.

In KS4 students are grouped in sets according to prior attainment in English, Maths & Science. In options subjects students are generally taught in mixed ability groups.

KS4 Core 

GSCE courses;

  • English (AQA)
  • English Language (AQA)
  • English Literature (AQA)
  • Maths ( Edexcel)
  • Biology (AQA)
  • Chemistry (AQA)
  • Physics (AQA)
  • Combined Science x 2 (AQA)
  • Religious Studies (AQA)


KS4 Optional Courses

Optional GCSE;

  • Art & Design (AQA)
  • Business Studies (Edexcel)
  • Catering (WJEC)
  • Computing (OCR)
  • Design & Technology Resistant Materials (AQA)
  • Drama (AQA)
  • French (WJEC)
  • Geography (AQA)
  • History (AQA)
  • Home Economics: Child Development (GCSE)
  • ICT (Edexcel)
  • Music (AQA)
  • PE (Edexcel)
  • Spanish (WJEC)


Optional Vocational Courses;

  • Creative Media (Cambridge National)
  • Sports Studies (Cambridge National)


Curriculum Time

KS3 (Years 7 & 8)

Subject Number of Hours per Week
English 4
Maths 4
Science 3
French/Spanish 2
History 1.5
Geography 1.5
PE 2
Design Technology 1.5
Computing 1
Art 1
Drama 1
Music 1
Enterprise 0.5


KS4 (Year 9)

Subject Number of Hours per Week
English 4
Maths 4
Science 3 (4 for Triple Science students)
PE 2 (1 for Triple Science students)
Option A 2
Option B 2
Option C 2
Option D 2
Option E 2


KS4 (Years 10 & 11)

Subject Number of Hours per Week
English 4.5
Maths 4
Science 5 (6 for Triple Science students)
PE 1
RE/PSHE 1.5 (0.5 for Triple Science students)
Option A 3
Option B 3
Option C 3