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The Charter School

East Dulwich


We have designed a curriculum rich in the powerful knowledge and concepts all students need--first, to understand the world in depth; and eventually to thrive in it both personally and professionally. This will include a thorough grounding in the best that has been thought and said from around the globe. 

Foundations (Key Stage 3) 

Our Foundations (Key Stage 3) curriculum runs from Year 7 to Year 9. The core curriculum is based on the English National Curriculum but is not bound by its constraints. Instead, we apply the most appropriate elements and enhance students' learning through units of study specifically designed to stretch them scholastically and personally and to lay solid foundations for future success.

In Foundations we will:

  • Ensure that all students quickly achieve the high standards of literacy and numeracy necessary to underpin success across the curriculum.
  • Emphasize science, history, geography and modern languages, as these subjects develop the analytical skills that universities and employers prize, as well as giving students a more rounded understanding of the world around them.
  • Give generous time to creative and expressive arts, such as drawing, painting, music, drama, design technology and physical education.
  • Encourage independent study through extended projects that develop students' own interests and passions.  

All students will study:

English language
& literature


& Design Technology







Biology, Chemistry
& Physics

Modern Foreign Languages


Global Awareness


Learning in all areas will be underpinned by a series of deep enquiry questions with real-world relevance. These questions will give a focus and coherence to learning activities, helping students to develop essential knowledge and skills. Each six week learning cycle will focus on a single enquiry question and will culminate in a formative assessment. The following is an example of the sort of deep enquiry questions students will tackle in their study of Humanities.

Autumn 1

Autumn 2

Spring 1

Spring 2

Summer 1

Summer 2

Why are there people everywhere?

How can we know what happened without being there?

Who really pays for our lifestyle?

Can ordinary people change history?

Where does religion ‘fit’ in the modern world?

Is there a ‘recipe’ for revolution?

The results of these assessments will be shared with parents and carers. But grades are not the only thing students should bring home. Students will be encouraged to develop pride in their work by compiling a portfolio of excellent works in each subject. These portfolios will include works that represent sustained effort by the students, including re-drafting based on feedback from their teachers and peers. These portfolios will be made available for parents and carers to view.

Learning will not be limited to the five timetabled lessons per day. The Tutorial programme will have a clear daily focus designed to help build character and positive learning habits (e.g. active reading to support literacy, Work-Related Learning, ethics, etc). Form Tutors and Heads of Year will closely monitor each pupil’s academic progress, as well as their personal growth and social development.

All students will have the opportunity to extend their studies by attending Enrichment classes which will be on offer every week. Pupils who learn most quickly will be given additional opportunities to study enriching subjects such as Mandarin or Latin. Students needing help with literacy, numeracy or the use of English as a primary language for learning will receive additional support. Some of this support will be offered in lessons and some will take place after school. Students with a passion for music will be able to apply for a one-year scholarship to support extra-curricular tuition in vocal/instrumental teaching.

Sporting provision will also be a key feature of school life. Students will be offered opportunities to join teams with their peers at The Charter School, in North Dulwich.

Senior School (Key Stage 4) 

In Key stage 4, pupils will follow tailored pathways of study, reflecting their individual aptitudes and interests. All pathways will include the core subjects of English language and literature, mathematics, and science, but will also include optional subjects. Most pupils will have the opportunity to study for the English Baccalaureate suite of qualifications, which offer the widest field of professional opportunities in later life.

The Key stage 4 tutorial programme will focus on the development of professional and life skills that will prepare students for fulfilling adult lives. Community and work experience placements will be part of the Key stage 4 curriculum for all pupils. The school will also offer opportunities for leadership development activities such as the Duke of Edinburgh scheme.

Senior School (Key Stage 5) 

Pupils will be provided with information, advice and guidance in order to create a personalized programme of study in Years 12 and 13. The school will offer a wide range of A Levels and other Level 3 qualifications. Work Related Learning provision will remain a key feature of school life in Years 12 and 13. All Year 12 pupils will undertake one hour a week of Community Service, in-line with provision at The Charter School, in North Dulwich. We will expect all of our students to secure offers from the higher education provider of their choice or positions on higher level apprentice schemes. Students with suitable levels of academic achievement will be provided with bespoke support for applications to Oxford and Cambridge colleges and medical schools.