Every individual has the ability to learn, so the curriculum aims not only to maximise but also increase this ability and meet the needs of all pupils regardless of where they currently are. It is designed to provide opportunity for unrestricted progress in all subject areas at all levels.
Throughout our curriculum, we follow the principles of Curriculum for Excellence and this works seamlessly in the Junior School which functions within the Scottish framework through Years 3-6 (P3-6). In the Senior School, we work to the English National Curriculum, the pupils completing Key Stage 3 in Years 7-9 (P7, S1-S2); studying GCSE level courses at Key Stage 4, Years 10-11 (S3-4); and A Level courses in Years 12-13 (Sixth Form – S5-6). In all areas of school we promote Assessment is for Learning and strive to provide full access to all areas of the curriculum for all pupils through the effective application of differentiation strategies and with the support of our strong ASN team and ethos. Within this, the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of every child is fostered and the mediums of delivering the curriculum facilitate the acquiring of skills required to learn, as well as specific knowledge and understanding.
Learning to Learn
‘Learning to Learn’ is the ability to pursue and organise one’s own learning, either individually or in groups, in accordance with one’s own needs, and awareness of methods and opportunities. From the School’s beginning to today, dedication to the principle of ‘Learning to Learn’ continues as our motto.
We are equipping our students with the ability to think critically, process information perceptively, analyse data accurately and evaluate situations intelligently as part of their education and fulfillment of their potential.
In today’s world, information has never been so easily accessible and the life skills of adaptability, resourcefulness, deep thinking and resilience never so relevant. It is therefore immensely important to us that we produce people who are not merely stores of information, but individuals who know how to access, assess, and apply knowledge; persons who have truly learnt how to learn.
Our aspiration for a student leaving Caledonia Campus is that they are ready for the rest of their life. We want them to look ahead with confidence, knowing that whatever the future, nothing will ever daunt them, because if they are in a situation where they don’t know what to do, they will know what to do.
Whilst this is still visionary in part, in practice we have begun this journey, and the move to an increasingly learner-led style of education is an actuality, not a dream.
For the Teacher this means an increasing ‘guide from the side’ approach that will require some letting go of the students, where they take responsibility for their own learning, but with the teacher giving careful, sensitive monitoring, support and direction.
For the students it means that they understand they can develop not only their knowledge of Maths, Science or Geography, but that their actual capacity to learn, across all subjects and spheres of life, can grow and develop. Through trying, risking failure, not giving up, using the resources they have around them, knowing when and where to ask for help, they can actually expand the ability of their learning power.
As we progress towards this improved and more relevant self-directed learning, in no way will we be surrendering actual attainment; it is simply that the attainment will be achieved through the true ability of the student, not through a program of forced-in knowledge in order to pass an exam.
Students who have really learnt how to learn will become lifelong learners, and we strongly support students of all abilities to continue on to Higher Education when they leave our school.
Faculties & Houses
The Senior School has three faculty areas. These faculties provide the basis for learning and teaching and include specific Self-Directed Learning areas. The three Houses are named after hills in the Ochils. There is a House assigned to each faculty area as follows:
- TROOPERS – Science & Technology
- WARRIORS – Mathematics & Business
- RAIDERS – Language & Humanities
Students are encouraged to participate in sporting events and develop in the area of team sports as well as areas of leadership and individual excellence.
Focus School Caledonia Campus now have a well equipped gymnasium, expanding an already broad range of sporting activities available including athletics, cricket, hockey, football, volleyball and netball. Inter-school events are held regularly utilising local sports stadia.
The physical health and well-being of our students is very important and PE is an important part of the curriculum throughout the school.
Ochil Campus includes music amongst the electives offered, enabling interested students to enjoy the benefit of being taught at school by qualified music teachers.
A broad range of instruments are available including strings, wind instruments and brass along with piano, guitars and vocal tuition. The culmination of this results in inspiring renditions by school bands and choirs at open days, graduation and special event performances throughout the year.
Students that have learnt how to learn will become life-long learners. The School actively prepares students for life long opportunities in further education, the workforce and community life. Students are expected to pursue avenues which lead directly into Post-Secondary education opportunities. The School has established a relationship with a number of Registered Training Organisations through the Focus support system. It also facilitates partnerships with further education providers to promote a smooth transition between the compulsory and post compulsory levels of schooling. To mention just a few, courses such as IAT, Quantity Surveying, ATT, CIMA, Project Management, CIM, ISMM, Ironmongery, CILEX & languages are examples of courses that our students are encouraged to take up once they leave school.
In every year since 2008, 100% of students have stayed on to complete their Year 13 (S7) of education (compared with 50% as the national average).