Stubbin Wood School

Creating opportunities for everyone to achieve success and reach their potential

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Message from the Headteacher
I feel very privileged to be the Headteacher of Stubbin Wood School & Nursery, a school where you can be confident your child will be safe, happy, and have their individual needs met through our specialist teaching and interventions.
Our values are reflected in our mission statement: 'Creating opportunities for everyone to achieve success and reach their potential. Inclusion is the centre of our ethos and day to day working practices as "Creating opportunities for everyone to achieve success" cannot be achieved without it. It is therefore part of the role of every member of staff.
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Our curriculum is designed with the undertstanding that each pupil will have unique starting and destination points. It is split into three separate curriculums, those being the pre-formal curriculum (for pupils working between P1i and P4), the semi-formal curriculum for pupils working at the level of pre-key stage standards and the formal curriculum (Wilson Stuart P step 9 and above, as well as Pre Key Stage 5 and 6). Within these curricula there are seven areas of learning, those being;


  • Communication and Language,
  • Cognition and Thinking,
  • Knowledge and Understanding of the World,
  • Expressive Arts,
  • Orientation, Motor and Mobility,
  • Social and Emotional and
  • Working towards Adulthood


Our curriculum is reviewed annually to ensure it meets the needs of our students, as we aim to ensure that we create opportunities for everyone to achieve success and reach their potential, and ultimately be as independent as possible, so that they are well prepared as possible for the next stage of their life.


The Pre-Formal Curriculum:

The pre-formal curriculum is for students with profound and complex needs who need a very special multi-sensory approach to their learning, and one which will take into account the interaction between sensory impairments, motor disabilities and medical problems.  The pre-formal curriculum is one that takes a more holistic view of learners and focuses on how they learn, it is ultimately a curriculum that:

  • Is designed to meet the needs of students through a personalised approach
  • Focusses on the early communication, social and emotional, and cognitive skills that are the foundation of learning
  • Recognises the importance of movement and social interaction in a student’s development and the need for sensory and multi-sensory approaches to learning
  • Recognises the importance of development the seven areas of engagement which are pre-requisites to subject specific learning and
  • Identifies and supports emerging skills, knowledge and understanding.


The Semi-Formal Curriculum:

The structure and underlying principles of the semi-formal curriculum support the progress and development of students across the school where student are functioning at a level below the requirements of the National Curriculum, but above the requirements of a pre-formal curriculum. These are the students that will be assessed against the pre-key stage standards at the end of Year 2 and 6 in Reading, Writing and Maths.

This approach encompasses the development of thinking skills, creative learning and movement and is designed to be developmentally appropriate. It enables all students to take part in activities that are engaging and meaningful to them, whilst providing them with relevant and challenging goals. This curriculum also acknowledges that there will be a need for specialist provision such as hydrotherapy, rebound therapy and sensory approaches to learning.


The Formal Curriculum:

The structure and underlying principles of the formal curriculum support the progress and development of students across the school where student are functioning at, at least Year 1 objectives. The formal curriculum is delivered through the National Curriculum, which sets out Programmes of Study that detail the content that should be taught in each subject. Once students reach KS4 and KS5 these subjects are then offered at accreditation level. 


Our Curriculum Intent:


  • Be ambitious, well-designed and well-sequenced to ensure social justice and equality for all
  • Provide a bespoke, broad and balanced education for all students, with access to additional enrichment activities and opportunities to work on their personal Education Health Care Plan targets
  • Bring creative learning to life
  • Enable students to develop knowledge, understand concepts and acquire skills, and be able to choose and apply these in relevant situations in order to develop their independence
  • Support students’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development by encouraging students of faith and those of no faith to value everyone and their beliefs equally (however we recognise that Parents/Carers have the right to withdraw their child from Religious Education and/or collective worship
  • Provide students with access to rich cultural experiences
  • Support students development of communication skills including through the use of symbols, signing and objects of reference as appropriate
  • Support students’ physical development and responsibility for their own health, and enable them to be as active as possible through the use of MOVE and Motor Learning
  • Provide subject choices that support students’ learning and progression, and enable them to work towards achieving their goals
  • Promote students’ ability to participate successfully in the wider community e.g. by developing their ability to purchase food, travel independently on public transport and undertake supported work experience opportunities
  • Prepare students for the future


Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

The EYFS is integrated within the KS1 Curriculum. It consists of the Statutory Prime and Specific areas of Communication and Language; Physical Development; Personal, Social and Emotional Development; Literacy; Mathematics; Understanding the World; and Expressive Arts and Design. Pupils are also given access to a range of Outdoor Learning Areas.


National Curriculum

Stubbin Wood School and Nursery has responded to the introduction of the 2014 National Curriculum and created Schemes of Work and Long Term plans which take into consideration the new requirements wherever appropriate to do so. In some cases however it was felt that the new requirements were at a level too high for our pupils and therefore the expectations have been differentiated to better meet the needs of the pupils within the school.

How the curriculum is delivered

The curriculum is taught using a number of different methods including; immersive environments, exploring and investigating, play, teacher/pupil led activities, role play, trips and visits, discussion, question and answer activities, written tasks, the use of intensive interaction, the use of PECs, TEACCH, review of learning sessions, theme events and weeks, cultural capital sessions with specialists, intervention sessions, Drop Everything and Read sessions as well as Maths Path sessions. In terms of PSHE; Health and Well-Being, Relationships and Living in the Wider World are the 3 strands that are taught each term. All 3 strands are visited throughout the year and so form a spiral curriculum whereby students revisit the themes on a regular basis but at a deeper level each time – in this way – over a 3 year cycle all the students will have visited the different elements. Overarching concepts and essential skills and attributes are developed through the Programme of Study. Much of the work is met through social skills, snack time, lunchtimes and breaks. It is overarching across all strands of school life. With regards to SRE; SRE is planned as one whole unit – each KS having their objectives within their SOW – the unit is run over a 3 year cycle. It is left to the class teacher to assess and plan what is relevant for their students at any point in the cycle but they must have planned for all the objectives to have been visited at least once throughout the cycle.


Teaching and Learning Non-negotiables

  • Planning is differentiated and based on assessment information (encouraging where possible students to develop self-reliance skills). In addition it acknowledges and utilises cross-curricular links to encourage generalisation of learning. Furthermore planning incorporates a range of teaching methods/styles to promote effective learning
  • Planning must show how prior learning links into new learning
  • Learning objectives (which have clear purpose, are focused on what students are trying to learn and not simple do and are measurable) and success criteria are stated on planning and differentiated to meet students’ needs
  • Resources (including technology) are used effectively to enhance learning
  • TA’s are deployed effectively and support students’ learning through their active involvement in planning (team planning approach to be adopted)
  • Students are set work that will challenge them
  • Self-assessment is to be encouraged of students on semi-formal and formal curriculum as appropriate – with students being supported to recognise what they have learnt and not simply done
  • Feedback is given as outlined in marking and feedback policy with next steps being set
  • Assessment trackers used on SOLAR are displayed in front of students books/files
  • Learning environment is stimulating and well organised to support learning
  • Ensure health and safety considerations are addressed whenever opportunities arise


Careers Education/Employability

A careers programme has been developed in Secondary to cover The Gatesby Benchmarks to support access to work related learning and practical work experience. This is linked into the wider enterprising work and Talentino’s training.



Teaching British Values

We promote ‘British Values’ through our spiritual, moral, social and cultural education which permeates through the school’s curriculum and supports the development of the ‘whole child’.

We recognise that such development is most successful when those values and attitudes are promoted by all the staff and provide a model of behaviour for our pupils.

The curriculum in all phases offers broad and balanced opportunities. Cultural appreciation and development forms part of our curriculum. We place great emphasis on providing encounters and participation in events and celebrations to broaden all pupils ‘experiences and awareness of others’.

Our assemblies help all pupils to find out about themselves and others linking their lives to the communities in which they belong.

Pupils are encouraged to experience British Culture through our curriculum themes. For example, pupils have visited local place e.g. library, Hardwick Hall and Bolsover Council. As a school, we take part in sporting activities which helps to instill ‘fair play’ and engender a ‘team spirit’. Although some of our pupils may find it difficult to articulate their feelings and concerns; staff are attuned to changes in demeanor and wellbeing that may indicate anxiety. Alternative communication such as Makaton, signs and symbols can be used when needed. If they are concerned about a pupil our accepted practice links to the Safeguarding Policy which entrusts a duty of care to all staff to actively protect and promote the welfare of children.


The staff work closely with parents, carers and other professionals to ensure that the pupils at Stubbin Wood are happy, well cared for and enabled to learn the skills they need to live a fulfilling life as part of their community.



These have a broad Christian basis and always include an act of worship. As well as the spiritual content, emphasis is also placed on teaching about moral, social and cultural issues relevant to our pupils.

Each department has an assembly once a week. The assemblies have a structured routine where 'good work' is celebrated through certificates, pupils in Primary are sung to if it is their birthday and then a short assembly activity/story by either classes or visitors. There is a prayer and a song at the end followed by music relating to the theme of the assembly.

There are also whole school assemblies which take place at Christmas, Easter and at the end of the school year.

Please note that parents have the right to withdraw their child from Religious Education or Collective Worship, or both. Please contact the Headteacher to discuss the provision of alternative arrangements.



Curriculum Impact 

As a result of the curriculum we deliver, our students continue to develop academically, personally and holistically. Key impacts seen in the last 12 months have included;

  • The difference in outcomes between disadvantaged pupils and the whole school cohort continues to close (a difference of between 2.8% and 4.4% in other core subjects excluding Writing where difference is 6.7%), with disadvantaged students actually outperforming the whole school cohort within Number

  • When including students who are close to achieving their target or above, last year we had more than 70% of students on track within Computing, Reading, Writing, U&A, Art, Geography, Biology, Chemistry, Enquiry, Physics and SMSC, despite key stage targets being reviewed annually, and annual targets being increased for the coming year where students have significantly exceed their target in the previous year (please note targets are set using a National Transition Matrices)

  • Higher attaining students outperformed the whole school cohort across core subject strands other than in terms of Communication (including SPAG) and Shape, Space and Measure.

  • The average grade at Post 16 has gone up since last year by between 0.7 and 1.2 of a level in core subject strands.

  • The introduction of Individual Learning Plans has helped to ensure students are making expected or better progress towards their EHCP targets, as is demonstrated by the combined outcomes recorded on our Holistic Tracking data analysis graph.


Key Stage 4 & 5 Accreditation Options

In Key Stage 4 and 5 pupils are given the opportunity to gain accreditation, this can be in the form of AQA unit Award, ASDAN Transition Challenge, AIM Functional Skills and the Arts Award for example. Also Key Stage 4 and 5 students are given the opportunity to gain accreditation in AQA, GCSE Art.

Curriculum Framework and Policy

If you would like to find out more about our curriculum, please contact the school's Reception on 01623 742795 and ask to speak to Rachel Watson