Watling View Upper School Overview
Students at Watling View Transition from Middle to Upper school at the end of Year 9 (key stage 3). Prior to this transition we meet with parents of year 9 students to discuss the differences in approach to teaching and learning between Middle and Upper School.
In Upper School we aim to provide continuity of approach in teaching which enables a consolidation of existing skills gained in middle school whilst developing skills which can be transferred into community and Post 19 settings. The curriculum is tailored to developing core skills and applying them to practical life experiences.
At the start of year 10, the Head of Department and class teacher will meet with parents to map out individual Destination Pathways which combine individual Targets, aspirations and signpost student’s routes to achieve specific outcomes as they progress through Upper School towards a preferred adult placement i.e. college, specialist day provision, work placements. These are reviewed as part of the annual EHCP meeting and supports in delivering an individualised aspirational curriculum, that supports the Preparation for Adulthood outcomes.
A significant difference between Upper School and Lower/Middle School is the emphasis on Work Related Learning. The aim of which is to provide students with skills required to successfully engage in learning experience which can be transferred into meaningful work experience, whether this is in the school or the wider community, including college. This is based on the individual needs of the student and therefore consistent with person centred approach to planning which runs throughout the school and at all key stages.
Pupils access the following work related learning/work experience learning opportunities:
- On site work experience
- Mini enterprise ventures
- Tuck shop
- School cafe
- St Albans market stall
- Wesley's Cafe
Travel training is another key feature of the Upper School experience for many students. Assisted by a specific travel trainer, students are supported in the community to use public transport. Initially this is for short journeys but with the aim of extending this whilst reducing the level of support over time to achieve greater independence. As part of Destination Pathways classes also support travel training when accessing the community with specific areas indentified alongside parents.
Some students this year have successfully combined travel training to and from their work placement.
Other learning opportunities included as part of the curriculum enrichment (theme days, special assembles and performances) are also included in the Destination Pathway.
Classes have the opportunity to plan, buy then “Cook their own” lunch one day a week. This has proved to be very popular with students and is now embedded in the timetable. This provides young people the opportunity to combine key skills they have learnt throughout the school and apply them to cook their own lunch.
Curriculum enrichment activities continue from Lower/ Middle School to Upper School. One of the most significant of these is the “Shakespeare for School’s” festival held in the Autumn 2 term.
Careers Education and the Gatsby Benchmarks are embedded throughout the curriculum. To find out more information and to see how we achieve the eight Gatsby Benchmarks please click on the link below.
All students in Upper School have their work externally accredited and receive certification for successfully completed portfolios. Current accreditation at the school includes:
The type of Accreditation and level of support is also reflected in the teachers’ person centred planning.