Curriculum Rationale and Aims

We are strongly committed to providing a world class learning experience for Melksham Oak students that will enable them to become global citizens. In particular, our school’s curriculum is designed to:

  • be highly ambitious and accessible for all learners;
  • equip students with the knowledge and skills required for future success;
  • broaden learners’ opportunities and outlooks.

Our Academic Curriculum

Our academic curriculum aims to balance breadth and depth of learning. Students are encouraged to move beyond understanding to independence and expertise.

Within each subject, key knowledge and skills are carefully identified and sequenced. Skilful teaching enables learners to develop and progress, both academically and personally, across Key Stages 3 to 5. Ongoing assessment is used to track students’ progress, plan lessons and inform targeted interventions, so that all learners achieve their full potential.

Highly ambitious and accessible for all learners…

As a fully inclusive comprehensive school, we strive to ensure that all learners excel. This includes adapting our curriculum to meet the needs of our SEND students, a small number of whom have core lessons taught through smaller than average nurture groups in Year 7 and Year 8.

At Melksham Oak, all learners are encouraged to have high aspirations. When it comes to choosing exam courses, students are well-supported to make informed decisions through a structured careers programme, which increases their awareness of future educational and employment opportunities.

Further information on how our school complies with our duties in relation to the Equality Act 2010 and the Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014, including making our curriculum accessible for students with disabilities or special educational needs can be found within our school Accessibility Plan and our Equality and Diversity Policy. Both of these documents are available to view here:

Broadening students’ opportunities and outlooks…

Our intention is to develop global citizens who are ready to overcome the challenges of tomorrow. Our curriculum encourages students to engage with the world around them and to recognise the contribution they can make to their local, national and global communities. The tutorial programme, assemblies and ACORNS days all help to facilitate this through opportunities to hear a diverse range of voices and discuss their own perspectives.

The aim is to equip students with the knowledge and skills they require for future success: personally, academically, in employment and beyond into a fulfilling future.

Our Wider Curriculum

We provide a rich wider curriculum, which incorporates a varied programme of experiences and activities beyond the classroom.

At whole-school level, the wider curriculum includes our tutor and assembly programmes, both of which have a strong values-based foundation - relating to our core values of respect, ambition and pride – and an emphasis upon promoting physical and emotional wellbeing.

We also offer our students the opportunity to join a range of extra-curricular teams, clubs and organisations. These include sports teams which participate in a range of local, regional and, on occasion, national fixtures; Music and Drama clubs; climbing club (using our purpose-built climbing wall) and a kayaking club.The timetable below, outlines a range of the regular extra-curricular opportunities on offer.

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Beyond school, we have offered a range of trips within the UK and beyond, which enhance students’ learning and appreciation for other cultures and traditions. These have previously involved varied destinations, including Berlin (History), Barcelona (Business Studies and Languages), the World War I battlefields (History) and New York (Drama), and other locations as part of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme. Each year, our Year 7 students participate in a range of team and physical challenges during trips to a camp in Wiltshire. The aim is to help students to bond as a close-knit and supportive tutor-group community.

Overall, our entire curriculum is designed to promote Melksham Oak’s shared values of respect, ambition and pride in everything we do.

Underlying Principles for Curriculum Planning

In order to ensure that we achieve our aims, each subject bases its curriculum planning around a set of key principles and components. These are outlined in the graphic, below:

Overall, our entire curriculum is designed to promote Melksham Oak’s shared values of respect, ambition and pride in everything we do.

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What do Melksham Oak students study at each Key Stage?

Information can be found on each Key Stage by following the separate links within the menu on the left of the screen for: