At Hampton High we are committed to ensuring students master the core subjects and enjoy a balanced curriculum. It is neither desirable, nor essential, for future career ambitions to over-specialise in specific subject areas. Therefore, we have developed an option system that offers students the right balance between breadth and specialism.
Key Stage 4 - Years 10 and 11
The Department for Education sets out a National Curriculum for core and “entitlement subjects". This gives students a broad curriculum and ensures that they are not disadvantaged by over specialised option choices. As a school we are not constrained by this curriculum, but will always make sure that students are fully prepared for the skills and knowledge they will need in order to succeed at key Stages 4 and 5.
In choosing a suitable programme of subjects for Key Stage 4, students will need to consider the following aspects:
- The requirements of a balanced curriculum
- Subjects in which they have a keen interest, and have experienced a measure of success
- Entry requirements for Higher Education institutions
- The English Baccalaureate
We recommend that all students should consider studying a language up to GCSE standard. In the case of new subjects not available during Key Stage 3, students should seek advice from subject teachers. Presentations will be given to the year group clarifying the nature of these subjects and providing guidelines for those contemplating their selection.
The procedure for making requests under the options programme is explained in the options booklet. Students are given the time to think about what subjects they would wish to study and then asked to complete an options form later in the year. Subject choices will be confirmed during the Summer Term. Students will be contacted earlier if there are difficulties with the combination of options chosen.
The options booklet will be handed out to students during the options evening early in the year.
At key stage 3, 4 and 5 we have 29 period weeks with 10 registration periods. Each morning there is time for year group assemblies and tutor time activities.
The curriculum at key stage 4 (years 10 and 11)
The majority of students study our core curriculum and an additional four subjects from those on offer.
Pupil periods for key stage 4
|Science||5 or 8||5 or 8|
|PSHE||2 days a year|
As you approach the end of Year 9 it is time to make some decisions about your future studies. You will also begin to think about what you would like to do in Year 12 and 13. Recent changes in government policy mean that all students must now stay in education, or work-based training, until they are 18.
At Hampton High we are committed to the concept of "breadth and balance" Âin Year 10 and 11, which can then become more specialised in Year 12 and 13. We have found it is unnecessary for future career ambitions to specialise in specific subject areas too early and that it is better to keep a broader choice of subjects at this stage. When choosing your subject it is more important to think about what you enjoy and where you have shown an aptitude. Your recent report should help to highlight this, or you can have a discussion with the relevant subject teacher.
Students choose four additional subjects from the following list.
|Computer Science (Top Set maths students only)||Media Studies|
|Separate Sciences (counts as one option choice)||Art|
When to Make Option Choices
You will be asked to complete an Options Choices Application Form in March/April of Year 9. We ask that each student selects one extra option that can be used if there is a problem with the combination of choices requested. Whilst we make every effort to enable as many students as possible to study the subjects they have requested we cannot guarantee meeting the exact preferences of individual children. Clearly the running of courses is dependent upon whether they are sufficiently subscribed, and the availability of specialist teachers. If there are any difficulties you will be informed as soon as possible.
Subject choices will be confirmed during the Summer Term but students will be contacted earlier if there are difficulties with the combination of options chosen.
How to Request Option Choices
On Monday 5 February you will receive a letter with details on how to request your Option Choices via SurveyMonkey which is an online survey tool that is password protected. Please follow this link which will take you to the Year 9 Options SurveyMonkey.
Looking Beyond Year 11
Whilst the choices you make in Year 9 will shape your next two years at Hampton High, they will also have an impact on your options after Year 11. This may involve staying on at Hampton High Sixth Form, going to another college or gaining employment with training. In the UK there are qualifications at six different levels (see the table below) and in Year 10 you embark on courses that will begin to take you through these levels. It is important to know what opportunities will be available based on these choices.
To progress onto A level courses or Level 3 vocational courses (e.g. BTEC Diplomas/ BTEC Nationals, Level 3 VRQs / NVQs) you will need to have at least 5 GCSE grades at grade 5 or above or equivalent grades on vocational courses.
Where students have achieved at least 5 GCSE grades 4-1 they will be able to progress onto Level 2 courses (BTEC First Awards, Level 2 VRQ / NVQ, Level 2 NVQ, Trainees & Apprenticeships).
Going on to University
If you are considering applying for a particular university course, you should check your GCSE choices will be suitable. In general, universities will be looking for students with good academic outcomes and outstanding study skills and habits. The Russell Group, which represents some of the UK's leading and many competitive universities, has published a guide to assist students with their decision making about post-16 education, called Informed Choices. They identify a number of A level subjects that are required more often than others for entry onto their degree courses. These subjects are: Mathematics/Further Mathematics, English Literature, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Geography, History and Languages (Classical & Modern).