Our school is a larger-than-average primary school. Over the past few years we have been re-designing our curriculum and felt that now was the right time to be part of the Accelerator programme. Our curriculum aims to prepare our children for their next steps in their future. Within our broad and balanced curriculum we have identified three main focus elements: STEM, outdoor learning, and health and well-being. Essential skills are not a bolt-on element for us but rather a 'golden thread' that weaves through our curriculum and unites our focus elements and the broader curriculum together. In essence, essential skills are at the heart of what we do.
The programme has helped staff to feel confident about delivering direct skills teaching and has given them a clear framework to work to. For our children, it has helped them to develop as learners by understanding that skills are also things we also need to learn and that we can all improve in these areas just as we do in maths, for example. It has helped them to be more confident as a result. Parental response to reports last year was very positive.
We aim to integrate the skills more fully into our reward system which we are redesigning. Once Covid restrictions allow, we will bring back careers-related visitors. We want to develop stronger links between essential skills and STEM learning. Finally, we will continue to develop the understanding of the Skills Builder Framework in our wider community.