Years 7 and 8 Accelerate Curriculum

Students who require more support in their literacy and numeracy are supported by a specialist Accelerate Curriculum. The curriculum is delivered by specialist teachers with the aim of accelerating progress in these two key areas. In Years 7 and 8, students receive two extra literacy and numeracy lessons as part of their core curriculum. Students graduate from the Accelerate Curriculum once they meet the expected standard of literacy and numeracy. Those students who follow the accelerate curriculum still access the full spectrum of the Year 7 curriculum.

The aim of the Accelerate Curriculum has always been to accelerate progress to meet age related expectations where possible. A high quality educational experienced is offered to increase engagement, confidence and academic resilience.

By working closely with the primary schools, together we identify students who we feel would benefit from the Accelerate Curriculum.

Close monitoring of students takes place during the first six weeks and followed by a review to ensure each individual is in the correct place; if students need to move out of the Accelerate Curriculum we make sure this happens as seamlessly as possible ensuring parents/carers are communicated with throughout.

Key Staff

Mrs Kelly Gilmour
Accelerate Curriculum Leader

Mrs Kelly Dixon
Accelerate Curriculum Teacher

Mrs Ellen Mothersdale

What does the Year 7 Accelerate Curriculum look like?

The students and their needs are different every year, therefore the Accelerate Curriculum is modified year on year to suit the needs of the next cohort of students.

The ‘Accelerate’ class will access five hours of English and Maths taught by the Accelerate staff each week, as opposed to three.

Content of the Accelerate Curriculum

In English, we aim to cover the same skills as the rest of Year 7, but we alter texts to make sure they are accessible to students. For example, we may begin the year with a novel; either Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory or Emma Carroll’s Letters from the Lighthouse. This does not mean we are working at a lower level; we are simply scaffolding and structuring the lessons to ensure the ultimate goals are achieved. The advantage of the Accelerate Curriculum is that we are able to dedicate more time if certain concepts are taking longer to embed. We believe in taking time to secure knowledge and understanding, and moving forward once students are ready.

In Maths, students will follow the same curriculum as the rest of Year 7, again taking more time to embed understanding. Students will still access the same topics, but additional stepping-stones may be added to trickier topics.

How does the Accelerate Curriculum develop into Years 8 and 9?

Every year, the needs of the students within the Accelerate Curriculum are reviewed and therefore the Accelerate Curriculum tweaks and changes year on year. We are also developing the skills of other teachers across the school and broadening our approach to the Accelerate Curriculum. The Accelerate Curriculum Leader will ensure a clear transition takes place to provide staff with information on the cohort and how best to approach their learning.

In year 9, all subjects return to respective departments but there is still input and collaboration with the Accelerate Team. Interventions remain and are overseen by the Learning Provision Department.

How we decide who would benefit from the Accelerate Curriculum

Frequency Asked Questions

Does the Accelerate Curriculum limit my child’s options in the future?
No. The Accelerate Curriculum allows students to access all of the same opportunities as everyone else. Students who have followed the Accelarate Curriculum have gone onto college, Sixth Form, university, apprenticeships.

Is my child in Accelerate for their entire time at William Howard?
We monitor each student closely and review regularly to ensure each student is following the curriculum most suitable.

Is my child part of a different form group if they follow the Accelerate Curriculum?
No. Form groups are mixed and often students are with at least one person that they have identified as a friend from primary school.

Can my child attend trips linked to the wider school?
Absolutely! Students are able to apply for any trips e.g. abroad or to the theatre. They apply in the same manner as the rest of their year group.