The curriculum is appropriately matched to pupils’ needs. All pupils can study a wide range of academic subjects, including a language in key stage 4. Leaders have reviewed the curriculum in key stages 4 and 5 so that they can offer further options as well as incorporate the recent changes to qualifications. As a result, more pupils are developing a mastery and depth of understanding of different subjects. (Ofsted, May 2016)

John Colet School offers a broad and balanced curriculum in Key Stage 3 consisting of:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • History
  • Geography
  • Religious Education
  • Modern Foreign Languages (French and Spanish)
  • Art
  • Drama
  • Music
  • Design & Technology
  • PE
  • Computer Science
  • Personal, Social and Health Education

In Years 7 and 8 students are taught in mixed ability tutor group classes for the majority of lessons. Maths and English set from January of Year 7.

Due to the increased demand of the GCSE examinations introduced in recent years and the Work Experience week during Year 10 at John Colet we run Key Stage 4 over three years: Years 9-11. With most subjects having no coursework and examinations that are taken at the end of Year 11 this provides students with the opportunity for a firm grounding in their chosen subjects and time for thorough revision at the end of the course. The core and optional subjects currently available are given below. Most students would take four optional subjects, which, taken with GCSE Combined Science would lead to 9 GCSEs. Students taking GCSE Biology, Chemistry and Physics would complete 10 GCSE qualifications. 

In Year 9 all core subject, English, Mathematics and Science are taught in ability sets and option subjects taught either as mixed ability groups or ability set. Detail of subject content can be found in the subject information section.


GCSE English Language

GCSE English Literature

GCSE Mathematics

GCSE Combined Science or GCSE Biology, Chemistry and Physics


Personal, Social and Health Education



GCSE Business Studies

GCSE Computer Science

GCSE Drama

GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition

GCSE French

GCSE Geography

GCSE Graphic Products

GCSE History

GCSE Music

GCSE Photography

GCSE Physical Education

GCSE Religious Education

GCSE Spanish

OCR Cambridge National in Information Technologies



The English Baccalaureate (EBacc) refers to a combination of subjects that the government thinks is important for young people to study at GCSE. It includes:

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

All students have access to the EBacc subjects when making GCSE choices and core subjects include English, maths and the sciences. As part of the options process students must choose to study one of geography, history, French or Spanish. 

At Key Stage 5 in the Sixth Form a range of subject are offered as outlined in the Sixth Form section of the website.

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