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Holystone Primary School

Together we enjoy, discover and learn

Curriculum Statement and Principles

Holystone Primary School Curriculum Statement

Our curriculum is designed to meet the needs of our changing catchment and a changing world.  Parents who send their children to Holystone Primary have very high expectations for them and these expectations are shared by our staff.


Our school has been a constant presence in the local community for 120 years. When the school was opened it served the local mining and farming communities.  In recent years, it has grown from a small village school to a large and thriving primary school serving an increasingly professional family base, who have a desire to see their children achieve academic excellence and be very well prepared for their next stage of education. 


Given the rapid recent influx of families new to the area and the relative diversity of our pupil population we set out a curriculum which supports not only our pupils’ academic development but also the helps develop a range of wider attributes as we look to grow their sense of community, both at local level and globally.. 


At the heart of our curriculum are our British Values and our core values, developed with the children…'Resilience', 'Independence', 'Community', 'Diversity' and 'Respect', which we interweave through the carefully planned progressive content by which we bring both the Early Years and National Curriculum to life.  We believe that the knowledge and skills taught alongside these values, which we will embed throughout a child's journey through our school, will enable the children of Holystone to make a positive impact on the world and help us ensure that at Holystone, we enjoy, discover and learn.



   Community Spirit            Respect              Diversity        Independence           Resilience


Together we enjoy, discover and learn.

Underlying Principles Underpinning Our Curriculum

Underpinning our school curriculum is our desire to make Holystone Primary School a place where children and adults together, can enjoy, discover and learn.  We aim to do this through our interpretation and delivery of the Early Years and KS1/KS2 National Curriculum through which we interweave our Core Values of Respect, Resilience, Diversity, Community Spirit and Independence.  We hope to develop excellent lifetime learning habits for our pupils by developing these values, alongside the core British Values to produce students who are not only ready to successfully transition to their next stage of their educational journey but, also have instilled within them the basis of the knowledge, traits and attributes of which will lead them to become the valuable, measured and successful citizens of the UK and the wider world of the future.


Our Curriculum Design begins with a clear understanding that our curriculum intent to deliver the following principles through our long-term plans – this is our intended curriculum.  It is important that we regularly ensure that this intended curriculum is what is enacted in the classroom and across the school. Our intended curriculum looks to build on available research as what makes a successful curriculum.  We aim to provide a curriculum based on William’s[i] seven principles of curriculum design:


We aim to have a curriculum which balances academic progress and the structured development of knowledge alongside offering many opportunities to promote the children’s spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development.  This way, we believe we can prepare our pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences they will face in the rapidly changing world they will face after school.


We aim to offer a rigorous curriculum which helps to develop the disciplinary habits of a mind that is open to learning.  We consider and promote critical thinking, not separately but throughout our planned topics and discrete subject long-term plans.


Our curriculum is planned to be coherent – picking out the clear connections that arise within a particular discipline, across a particular year-group or across a range of subjects.  For example, a pupil should recognize that the recording of results from science investigations links directly to their work on data and statistics in Maths; similarly, a pupil will find map reference work in Geography far easier if they link this directly to their work on co-ordinates in Maths.  We will try to avoid forcing link or connection across a topic.


Progression in learning is a key aspect of our curriculum planning.  We aim to vertically integrate the learning of knowledge where there is a clear linear direction, ensuring that curriculum plans clearly indicate how objectives taught at one point in time builds on material taught earlier and feeds into what is to be taught later.


Through a mainly whole class teaching approach (although this approach is not exclusive) we aim to inclusively ensure there is an appropriate level of challenge for all pupils relative to their individual needs.


Through the ongoing development of subject leadership and utilising the input of experts where required, we look to have a focused curriculum that ensures the ‘big picture’ with regards to all curriculum subjects is known.


This is a rapidly changing world, and as a result, our curriculum will never be a “finished” model.  We will see staff come and go and pupils will differ in their aptitudes and abilities year on year.  Therefore, we will work tirelessly to ensure our intended curriculum remains relevant and the creativity and skills of the teachers and support staff will be vital and key our success.


As highlighted above, these principles, interwoven with the threads of our core value have led to the development of the long-term curriculum plans which make up our intended curriculum.  Senior Leaders, Subject Leaders and all other staff will have regular opportunities to monitor its implementation to ensure that what is intended is actually enacted remains relevant and is impactful in terms of both pupils’ development of knowledge and skills but also on their development of our core value attributes.  Regular planned reviews and feedback will, alongside changing internal and external priorities, continue to feed into ongoing our curriculum development.  It is not static process, nor can any successful curriculum be static. However, after a period of challenge and change, we will look to ensure future changes are carefully planned and implemented.


[i] Principled Curriculum Design  - Dylan William Oct 2013; SSAT Redesigning Schooling