Key Stage 3 – Years 7 to 9

Key Stage 3 is designed to give a broad education across the disciplines that prepares students for the next stage of their education; in depth specialisation.

The national curriculum compulsory subjects at this stage are English, Mathematics, Science, History, Geography, Modern Foreign Languages, Design and Technology, Art and Design, Music, Physical Education, Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education, Computer Science and Religious Education. In addition to these subjects, the Priory School teaches Drama, Food Technology and Textiles. Please note that Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education is delivered through a series of non-timetabled sessions throughout the year as we often invite external speakers.

At the Priory, we prioritise curriculum-led learning whilst exposing our students to advanced learning experiences. We design structured activities to develop debate, collaboration and commitment to resolution, and we initiate self-led projects to promote independent thought, reasoning and confidence. In these ways we create an outstanding environment for students to progress and thrive.

The way a student feels about their education has a significant impact on their enthusiasm for learning. We focus on empowering our learners, centralising them in their own educational journey, and we encourage them to persevere through adversity.

Our teachers provide clear instructions and expectations, a strict homework timetable, and regular feedback. They also conduct summative assessments that evaluate student achievement against their peers and industry benchmarks. Mathematics and science groups are set based on prior attainment and ongoing assessment, and all other subjects are taught in mixed ability class groups.

In and out of class support ensures that no child is left behind.

Key Stage 4 (GCSE) – Years 10 and 11

Key Stage 4 represents a period of specialisation in which students study for national qualifications. Our students follow a core curriculum of English Language, English Literature, Mathematics and Science and can select from additional subjects for study; Art, Business Studies, Computing, Design and Technology, Drama, Food Technology, Geography, History, Modern Languages, Music, Physical Education and Religious Education. Students make their GCSE option choices in year 9, and we discuss their chosen pathway before the final selection is made.

At The Priory School, our students work towards GCSEs, BTEC qualifications, and the English Baccalaureate. We offer these choices to our students so that they can select the most appropriate qualifications to suit their further goals.


GCSEs are General Certificates of Secondary Education, and they cover a broad range of subjects that give students a solid foundation of knowledge. They represent the standard secondary school qualification. When studying science, most students take Combined Science, a double GCSE, or they can apply to take the separate Biology, Chemistry and Physics GCSEs (sometimes known as Triple Science).


BTEC qualifications are specialist work-related qualifications, and these studies combine practical learning with subject and theory content. They are designed for young people who are interested in a particular sector or industry but are unsure as to what job they would like to do. BTEC Firsts are available from Entry Level to Level 2 (similar standard to GCSEs). At The Priory School we offer the BTEC First Diploma in Dance & BTEC First Diploma in Health and Social Care.

The English Baccalaureate

The English Baccalaureate is a set of subjects at GCSE that keeps young people’s options open for further study and future careers. It consists of English Language and Literature, Mathematics, the Sciences (including Computing), Geography or History, and a Language. Find out more.


Priory6 (The Priory School’s sixth form provision) is a fully inclusive sixth form which encourages all students to access Level 3 courses (A level and A level equivalent) and consists of students with a variety of academic backgrounds. We have students of the highest academic ability as well as having the flexibility to inspire others who may not be permitted to study to this level at other institutions. Currently we are a small body of students which allows everyone to be independently supported through our pastoral system. As we grow, this is an area of Priory6 we will ensure we maintain so that all students feel valued and are supported to achieve to the highest levels both academically and socially.

For further information please visit the Priory6 page.

If you have any questions regarding Priory6 please email: pha@priorycofe.com