Quick Links

Useful Links

GSO Test

Our Curriculum

At THS, every student has the opportunity to flourish and be the ‘best that they can be’, both personally and academically. It is our ambition that every student, irrespective of starting point, background or gender, is prepared for life beyond Tanbridge House School as informed and positively active global citizens.


Find our more about our subjects here 

For more information on the National Curriculum, please see: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-curriculum#curriculum-by-key-stages .

Key Policies

A copy of our Curriculum Policy, Marking and Assessment Policy and Teaching and Learning Policy can be found on our Policies webpage.

Our Curriculum

Our curriculum is composed of the taught knowledge and development of skills that support the acquisition of excellent exam results and the rich extra-curricular provision, coupled to an over-arching ethos of ‘care, kindness and achievement’. It is crucial to developing a holistic and personalised learning experience for every student.  Our founding principles of challenge and ambition, accessibility and achievement, underpinned by our core values of acceptance, diversity, inclusivity and resilience are interwoven across the formal and informal curriculum offer. 

Our curriculum provides a secure foundation for deep learning for future life. Our curriculum policy reflects the aims and values of the school and is based on a set of principles that lie at the heart of a learning centred school:  

Our intent is that the curriculum at Tanbridge House School: 

  • Provides a broad, ambitious, balanced, relevant and personalised curriculum which meets the individual needs of our students and provides them with appropriate qualifications and skills for the future.  
  • Is coherent, planned and sequenced so that that each element is linked, making the learning experience more meaningful and thus improving the retention of knowledge and transferable skills. 
  • Is inclusive and encourages high expectations and aspirations for all, irrespective of gender, SEND, ethnicity, academic ability, social or cultural background. All students can be successful by ensuring the curriculum is matched to students’ needs, abilities and achievements. 
  • Provides opportunities for students to acquire and develop essential skills such as literacy and numeracy, to not only underpin students’ academic achievement, but also fosters a strength of character and resilience which will help students cope with and overcome the challenges they will encounter throughout life.  
  • Stimulates curiosity and develops lively, imaginative and enquiring minds with a questioning approach, expanding students’ perspectives so that they can challenge prejudice and recognise and appreciate the benefits of diversity.  
  • Ensures that all students are given the opportunity to be creative and take managed risks with their learning, in a safe, supportive yet challenging environment.  

At Tanbridge House School we are proud of our curriculum in so many ways:

  • Excellent relationships with our feeder schools ensures continued progress at the point of transition from KS2 to KS3
  • Links with post-16 providers ensures that the 5-year learning journey equips our students with the skills and knowledge needed to be global citizens: In 2021, 99.4% of our Year 11 students progressed to further education, employment or training.
  • Our increasingly diverse and inclusive curriculum challenges stereotypes and promotes equality and inclusivity. Extra-curricular themes enhance cultural capital through enrichment activities, assemblies and tutor activities.
  • Learning is tailored to the needs of the individual. Bespoke programmes of study through Inclusion and our behaviour unit ‘The Bridge’, ensures that the curriculum for all students, including those who may find the ‘traditional’ pathway a challenge, opens doorways for the future.
  • High quality CPD, based on educational research evidence and tailored to the needs of individuals, develops our staff so that there is a high level of consistency across the school and within subjects. Ensuring every teacher is supported in delivering high-quality teaching is essential to achieving the best outcomes for all pupils, particularly the most disadvantaged.
  • Work is accessible for students but stretch and challenge is at the heart of all we do, be it through expert questioning and feedback, choice of task, or modelling and exemplars. Learning is never ‘done’, it is simply the start of a journey.
  • Our curriculum develops the whole child; our students embody the school's core values of care and kindness.

Please contact the school if you would like to find out more about the Curriculum at Tanbridge House School.

Key Stage 3: Year 7 and 8

At Tanbridge House School, high quality and engaging teaching across all year groups ensures exceptional implementation of the KS3 curriculum. We deliver a rich, ambitious and well sequenced two-year Key Stage 3, covering National Curriculum content and more besides.

Excellent Primary school links ensures that KS3 builds on prior knowledge, skills and understanding so that students are stretched and challenged from day one of transition. Robust and effective assessment systems throughout KS3 ensures secure learning of knowledge and skills that are fundamental to lifelong learning.

Subject  Year 7 Hours per fortnight and groupings  Year 8 Hours per fortnight and groupings 
English  7 – Taught in mixed ability tutor groups  7– Mixed ability 
Maths  6 – Set initially in September using KS2 data, reviewed termly  6– Set and reviewed termly 
Science  6 -Taught in mixed ability tutor groups term 1, set thereafter  6 - Set groups 
Art   2 – mixed ability  2 – mixed ability 
Drama  2 – mixed ability  2 – mixed ability 
Faith, Philosophy & Thinking  2 – mixed ability  2 – mixed ability 
Geography  3 – Set against Science. Led by Science but with Geography/IT input  3 – Set against Science. Led by Science but with Geography/IT input 
History  3 - Taught in mixed ability tutor groups. Set against English  3 – Mixed ability. Set against English 
Computing  1 – set against Science  2 – Set against Science 
MFL For a small group of students, additional literacy and numeracy lessons will be taught from after the October half term instead of either German or Spanish (Confidence Group)  6 – Taught in mixed ability tutor groups for first half term, thereafter set by ability. Students will start with two languages from the start. All will do French and then either German or Spanish according to band.  6 – Set by ability and second language 
Music  2 – Mixed ability  2 – Mixed ability 
PE  4 – By tutor group term 1, then by learning route thereafter  4 – by ability/ activities 
PSHE  2 – Mixed ability  1 – Mixed ability 
Technology  4 – Mixed ability  4 – Mixed ability 

Key Stage 4: Year 9, 10 and 11 (GCSE & BTEC)

At Tanbridge House School, we know that the best curricular offer is guided by a vital set of core principles and values. 

  • Equality – everyone has the opportunity to study subjects that they wish to. 
  • Accessibility – all subjects and their teachers will ensure that learning content is appropriately challenging and scaffolded to maximise progress and the learning potential of every student. 
  • Variety – there must be a balance between core subjects such as English, Maths and Science which blend well with other subject choices. 
  • Knowledge and skills – it is important that you learn the key components of any course undertaken. This knowledge can then be blended with skills such as analysis, research and evaluation so that you can apply information to relevant challenging tasks. 
  • Being successful – it is positive to pursue subjects that you are good at and that allow you to be successful in examinations and with future career choices. 

The importance of maintaining a broad and balanced curricular offer cannot be underestimated. Considering this, we ensure that ‘core subjects’ such as English, Maths and Science are complemented by a wide range of Option Choices, including MFL, Geography, History, Performing Arts, Philosophy and Ethics, PE, and a variety of Design Technologies. 

Within Key Stage 4 students follow a core curriculum as below: 


Hours per Fortnight 

Year 9 

Year 10 

Year 11 

English – set by ability in sets 1 and 2, mixed ability for the remaining groups 

Maths – set by ability 

Combined Science – set by ability 

Digital IT* - Core subject for Y10 2023-24, option subject for Y9 2023-2024 onwards  



Core PE – Yr9 select their route whilst Yrs 10 and 11 select their activity every 4 weeks 



Optional Subjects – mixed ability unless multiple classes for a subject within the same block allow for setting by ability. 

Digital IT is examined in Year 10 for the 2023-2024 cohort and returns to a three-year Option subject for Year 9.  

In addition, there are a range of optional subjects available to students, which are accredited through either GCSE or BTEC Technical Awards. Each optional subject is studied for five hours per fortnight. 

The Department for Education recommends that students should study a suite of subjects at GCSE, known as the EBacc, that keeps young people’s options open for further study and future careers. 

The EBacc is: 

  • English language and literature 
  • maths 
  • the sciences 
  • geography or history 
  • a language 

The importance of studying EBacc subjects is explained and promoted to students at the beginning of the Option process, and we positively encourage and affirm our ambition for students to select a language; engagement and enjoyment of the subject is, however, important. All students can opt to study EBacc subjects at KS4 and every student selects at least one EBacc subject. Whilst THS is in line with the national average of uptake of EBacc choices, our outcomes are significantly higher due to the high-quality teaching across all five years. 

It is, however, our ambition that 65% of our students study a language at KS4 and we continue to actively promote and encourage study at KS4, working towards increasing this percentage, year on year. 

Option subjects are:

Art & Design 

Computer Science 

Dance (BTEC Preparation) 

Design & Technology 


Food & Nutrition 






Media Studies 


Music BTEC Technical Award 

Performing Arts BTEC 

Philosophy & Ethics 

Physical Education 



Cambridge National Sports Studies 

Travel & Tourism BTEC 

Digital IT BTEC 

Skills for Life* 

Child Development BTEC 

Triple Science (Biology, Chemistry and Physics) 

FSMQ and Statistics*** 

Film Studies 

Directed Studies is used to support students in Year 11 who would benefit by not selecting their full allocation of option subjects. Futures* and Skills for Life* are non-examined subjects and are delivered to invited students focusing on life skills and basic literacy. FSMQ & Statistics*** are by invite only. 

Helping students to access the curriculum and be successful 

In some individual cases, student, parents and teachers agree that a student needs a different curriculum in order to thrive and achieve. This is organised on an individual basis according to the needs of the student. Support can continue throughout years 7 to 11 according to need and is reviewed regularly. 

Initial interventions are based on KS2 scores, reading ages and CATs and may include: extra support within lessons, a blended curriculum offered through mainstream lessons and small group work in The Bridge, Confidence, Lexonik training and Reading Catch Up lessons. In addition, for some students it may be agreed that they opt for one less subject and instead receive supported study time (Directed Studies) or follow the Futures and Skills for Life curriculum which helps students develop life skills and basic literacy. 

Curriculum Implementation

Show list Show Grid

 High quality, consistent teaching is the single most important strategy to improve pupil attainment effective teaching is directly linked to effective learning. Ensuring every teacher is supported in delivering high-quality teaching is essential to achieving the best outcomes for all pupils, particularly disadvantaged students and students with SEND. 

Whilst there is no ‘one size fits all’, teachers at THS are guided by the practices identified in educational research as being instrumental in supporting student progress. Lessons must have a clear structure and would largely draw on the following features: 

  1. All lessons are placed in context and / or begin with a short review of previous learning 
  2. Student friendly learning objectives introduce new learning and success criteria 
  3. New subject content is broken down into small steps to avoid cognitive overload 
  4. Models, exemplars and appropriate scaffolding enable students to independently apply the knowledge and skills learned and evaluate their own progress within a lesson. 
  5. Independent (Take10) and guided student practice is required after each step 
  6. Open questions consolidate and extend student understanding 
  7. Key terminology is explicitly taught and modelled 
  8. Scaffolding/differentiation allows all students to access the learning at a level that is appropriate and challenging to their natural ability. 
  9. Learning objectives are returned to and students demonstrate clear progress towards these. Regular opportunities must be taken to assess the progress and learning taking place during the lesson and must inform the direction of the remainder of the lesson and inform subsequent lesson planning 

A picture containing text, electronics, screenshot, parallel

Description automatically generated


Our enrichment provision is a vital component of the school’s curriculum and a child’s education, as we believe that every student should participate in memorable and enriching experiences that will broaden what our students learn in the classroom. Extra-curricular activities provide students with an opportunity to explore new interests, develop high levels of skill in existing interests, nurture talent and support young people to be confident, resilient, and independent and, most importantly, have fun and enjoy themselves! 

It is our ambition that every student should participate in at least one extra-curricular activity every term, exploring new interests, developing high levels of skill in existing interests and, most importantly, having fun and enjoying themselves! 

Our Enrichment Charter states that, at Tanbridge House School, we want every student to: 

  • Participate in a school club 
  • Learn a new skill 
  • Help raise money for our nominated charities 
  • Be captivated by live sport, music or theatre 
  • Talk to, and be inspired by, representatives from industry, commercial enterprises and further education 
  • Make links between subjects through participation in cross-curricular days 
  • Contribute and feel part of their school community through participation in student voice 
  • Demonstrate care and kindness towards others through peer mentoring, school prefects and links with primary schools 
  • Show resilience in taking on a new challenge 
  • Be inspired by external speakers 

Newsletters - Teaching & Learning