Mr M Rushton BA(Hons)
Curriculum Area Leader for English

Mrs A Dyde BA(Hons)
Second in English

Mrs H Bowman-Dalton MA(Oxon.)
Lead Practitioner in English

Mrs C Evans BA(Hons)
Lead Teacher of English

Mrs R McGhie BA(Hons)
Assistant Headteacher

Mrs S Luckman BA(Hons)

Mr J Moore BA(Hons)

Miss A Wills BA(Hons)

Mrs K Wright BA(Hons)

Click here for English Curriculum Delivery Grid


‘’I cannot teach anybody anything, I can only make them think.” – Socrates

The skills of reading, writing, speaking, and listening are of vital importance in many areas. Not only are they essential in many careers, they also underpin successful study at all levels, and a proficiency in them can also add immeasurably to an individual’s general quality of life. The Key Stage Programme of Study is designed to aid and assess such development, and to encourage learners to be inspired, moved and changed by following a broad, coherent, satisfying and worthwhile course of study. It will prepare learners to make informed decisions about further learning opportunities and career choices and to use language to participate effectively in society and employment.

Year 7·

Transition Unit

  • Technical Accuracy
  • The Novel
  • Classical Literature
  • Short story study
  • Speaking and Listening: Persuasive speeches
  • Shakespeare

Year 8

  • The Novel
  • Poetry
  • Narrative Writing
  • Non-fiction Writing
  • Non-fiction Reading
  • Shakespeare
  • ‘Sport Talk’ – the language of coaching

The heart of teaching at Key Stage 3 is to allow the pupil to learn through creativity and critical thinking. We believe that success at Key Stage 4 begins with preparation at Key Stage 3, and therefore all of our Key Stage 3 Units have been written to address and develop the skills needed for GCSE; each unit is assessed by an assessment linked to a GCSE Assessment Objective. As Functional Skills are embedded within all Schemes of Work, learners are able to apply their knowledge in practical and purposeful ways. Across Key Stage 3 and, indeed, Key Stage 4, reading is actively encouraged to promote and accelerate learning in all areas: in Year 7 and Year 8, pupils have a designated reading lesson every week.  Through their studies pupils have opportunities to reflect on a range of spiritual, moral, ethical, social and cultural issues as well as the opportunity to develop individual citizenship while studying environmental issues.

KEY STAGE 4 (Years 9-11)

Pupils begin studying for their GCSE in English Literature and English Language in Year 9. This enables learners to revisit topics over the 3 years and to secure their understanding and use of key skills. For both English Literature and English Language, assessment is 100% exam. For Literature the set texts are:

‘A Christmas Carol’ – Charles Dickens

‘Blood Brothers’ – Willy Russell

‘Romeo and Juliet’ – William Shakespeare

Eduqas Poetry Anthology (18 poems from a variety of poets)

In Component 1 of the Language exam, pupils will be required to write an engaging story which tests their ability to write skillfully and imaginatively, as well as their technical accuracy. This paper also has a reading element which tests pupils’ skills of inference, deduction, synthesis and evaluation.

In Component 2 of the Language exam, pupils will be required to write two non-fiction pieces of writing, for example: a letter, a review, a report, a speech or an article. As with Component 1, this tests their ability to write skillfully, adapting their writing to the purpose, format and audience. This paper also has a reading element, requiring pupils to examine 2 non-fiction texts (one modern and one pre-20th century) and to respond to them using skills of inference, deduction, synthesis, comparison and evaluation.

Recent GCSE results

The results achieved by the 2018 cohort maintained the excellent levels of performance that have been established within the English department.

The number of pupils achieving at least a grade 7 rose in both English Language and English Literature (up to 21% and 23% respectively).  The number of pupils achieving at least a grade 5 for English Literature also increased (up to 60%).  Our Progress 8 measure (the measure used for comparing pupils’ performance against all pupils nationally) increased from the high standard established in 2017.

All of these achievements followed the first set of results that were achieved on the new specification in 2017.  Our results achieved at GCSE level for that year were outstanding and pupils achieved fantastic results in a number of key measures.

For English Language, the pupils achieved 86% 4+ on the new qualification.  This was 17% better than the figure achieved nationally.  Results achieved at 7+ were over 18%, in comparison to only 16% achieving this figure nationally.  For English Literature, results for the highest achieving pupils were even better with 22% achieving 7+.

How can parents and guardians help with developing English skills?

Pupils cannot take the texts into the Literature exam, so unless they know a range of relevant quotations from their two set texts, they are not going to succeed – look for A3 pieces of paper dotted around their bedrooms with ‘Mind-maps’ of their texts! If they’re not there – quiz them and ask why not?

Some key things that might help them when preparing revision materials are:

  • Use colour – this will really help them to remember the different sections in the exam;
  • A different mind map for themes and characters;
  • SHORT quotations from the text – if they’re too long, they’ll never remember them;
  • Using images (not works of art, just simple sketches) can help some pupils, especially visual learners, to remember;
  • Make sure that your child has read the novel and the plays as many times as possible before the exam;
  • Buy a study guide and ask your child the questions for each section to check their understanding of the main plot and characters.  Study guides can be purchased via our English department for a reduced price;
  • You could even read the books yourself and really engage in the learning process!
  • Post it notes are an excellent resource for revision/ sorting/text.

How can I help with English Language?

  • Ensure your son/daughter has prepared revision cards
  • Time your son/daughter with practice questions (already been given out by class teachers) and encourage them to be handed in to be marked by their teacher
  • Help with short spelling tests of key words highlighted in timed writing
  • Encourage your child to read non-fiction and media texts in the run up to the exam – encourage timed reading.

Useful Websites for revision:

Year 11 pupils will also have access to a bespoke set of resources via the school website (often referred to as the ‘blue tab’).

Extra-curricular opportunities

We pride ourselves on providing a range of excellent opportunities outside of the classroom, in order to foster a love of English.  Across the academic year, such opportunities include:

  • The National Poetry Competition
  • The House Spelling Bee
  • Lunchtime ‘A-Level’ lessons
  • Theatre trips (including to the RSC in Stratford-upon-Avon and the Birmingham Hippodrome)
  • The Harry Potter Studios Tour
  • SHINE Reading Club
  • RSC Live Schools Broadcast
  • Media Club