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Curriculum Statement

JCA Ethos: We aspire for students to thrive academically; flourish and grow as young people. When they leave us they will have a strong sense of self, their place in the world and the agency to fulfil their potential. 
Simply put, this is the intent of John Cabot Academy. Achieving this ambition for our students requires excellent pastoral care, and a rich, inspiring curriculum that will equip them with the knowledge they need to develop their sense of self and empower them to fulfil their potential.

Teaching and learning

Our students’ discovery of an exciting, rigorous, broad and ambitious curriculum is the core purpose of our school. The more we compel our students to think deeply, and the more skilfully we do this, the greater the learning, so the greater the impact the school is having.

We will achieve this by ensuring that students feel a sense of belonging and acceptance within the academy, that students’ efforts, skills and values are recognised to build self-esteem, that learning environments feel safe, encouraging active participation, risk taking and positive engagement and, through maintaining high standards underpinned by the expectation that everyone works hard and tries their best. Universal principles of excellent teaching practice are what our teachers must ensure they are considering, striving towards and reflecting on, in every lesson, so that their students may thrive academically, flourish and grow as young people, and understand what they are learning and why.

At JCA we strive for our teaching to be:


  • Teachers have expert knowledge of their subject’s domain, specification, subject-specific pedagogy and their students
  • Explanations and modelling are highly effective#
  • High standards of literacy and oracy are promoted
  • Conditions for learning and comprehensive high expectations are evident in classrooms


  • Links are made with prior learning and across domains
  • Student practice of new material is guided, deliberate, sufficient and independent
  • Content is expertly interleaved and new content is presented in appropriately sized well-sequenced steps


  • Students’ understanding is expertly checked and gaps are acted on
  • Misconceptions are anticipated, identified and addressed
  • Scaffolding is provided where necessary
  • Feedback is of a high quality and students act upon it
  • Teachers manage their students’ mindsets competently.


Every student in key stage 4 can expect to receive targeted, meaningful feedback at least twice per term, and have time to act on it.  Every student in key stage 3 can expect to receive targeted, meaningful feedback at least once per term, and have time to act on it.


Every student in every subject can expect one piece of homework every week and have one week to complete it.

You can find our homework policy here.


All our students study a broad and balanced curriculum, designed so they get access to a range of exciting and varied subjects.

Students in key stage 3 (years 7, 8 and 9, ages 11-14) all study maths, English and science, as well as history, geography, religion and philosophy, PE, computer science, music, Spanish and drama, every week. They study art, food and art textiles on a 9-week rotation, with one double lesson per week. They also have a PSHE lesson once a fortnight.
Students in key stage 4 (years 10 and 11, ages 14-16) all study maths, English and science, and continue with PE every week. They can then choose which subjects to continue from key stage 3, or pick up at the start of year 10. They also have one lesson of PSHE per fortnight.

Below you will find links, each of which opens a PDF that provides information as to that subject’s content, and what students learn about and when. Curriculum team leaders can provide a lot more detailed information regarding the careful sequencing of the curriculum if required; please send an email to [email protected] if you would like to know more.


Business Studies

Computer Science

Creative Design




Health and Social Care


Languages (Spanish)



PE and Sports Science


Religion and Philosophy