St Osmund’s Curriculum Statement
“What we call civilization – the accumulation of knowledge which has come from our forefathers - is the fruit of thousands of years of human thought and toil. It is by right the common heritage of all.”
Robert Tressell - ‘The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist’
As a Church of England school, we aspire to enable all children to reach their God-given potential. The school’s Christian values – Hope, Community, Respect and Love – are exemplified throughout our curriculum. Like Tressell, the inequity and iniquity of our society frustrates us and we aim to equip every single child in our care with a diverse, rich and inspirational curriculum to ignite lifelong learning and access their right to their common heritage. Our curriculum planning sees no barriers and has actively sought to overcome the artificial, painful barriers within society. In particular, the reach and breadth of the curriculum has explicitly sought to find positive representation of all people for all children. We want our students, whatever their faith, colour or heritage, to find positive examples of people who look like them in their everyday learning. We have taken diversity to our core, we have planned for equity for all and we have placed inclusion high on our agenda. We are proud of our curriculum which is not only suitable for the school leavers of the future but is also one underpinned by Respect and Love for all. We are confident that our students will leave us feeling Hope for their future as a result of their learning and empowered to see their place in the global Community that we have embraced.
Our aim is to provide a ‘knowledge - rich curriculum’: one that allows all students to access their right to learn ‘the best that has been thought and said’ (Matthew Arnold ‘Culture and Anarchy’, 1869). The cultural capital that our students will accumulate is, therefore, the essential knowledge that all children need in order to develop into educated citizens. The origins of this knowledge span the globe, allowing pupils access to a wide range of spiritual, cultural, historical and real world perspectives. We live out our core value of Community in facilitating this access as we teach our children to take their place of responsibility in the local, national and global communities.
Within our curriculum, rich knowledge allows students to learn more and make links between what is known. Learning through a knowledge-rich curriculum means that every time a topic or content is revisited, it allows the student to understand to a deeper level. Progress is made by knowing more and remembering more – allowing students to be able to tackle more challenging topics through having the opportunity to readily retrieve information and apply it to unfamiliar contexts.
Alongside this, our curriculum will provide our students with a ‘language- rich’ environment, consistently requiring them to develop a wide vocabulary which will empower all students to achieve highly. Opportunities to practise and use that vocabulary both orally and through writing form a central tenet across our curriculum. The use of ‘Knowledge Organisers’ across the school allows us to make clear to students which facts, vocabulary and concepts they are expected to learn so that they can be successful in the unit they are studying and in future learning throughout their school journey.