Curriculum

At Quest School, the curriculum is designed to meet the specific needs of pupils with autism, whilst also providing a broad, balanced and inclusive educational experience for all.

All pupils at Quest school have SEN (Special Educational Needs) Statements or EHC (Education, Health, Care) Plans and a primary diagnosis of autism.

Pupil’s individual needs are at the heart of all curriculum and timetable planning, and individual programmes of work derive from their Statements of SEN or EHC plans. Progress towards targets is closely monitored and contributes to the Annual Review, as required.

All the pupils at Quest School have significant impairments in communication, social understanding and flexibility of thought due to their diagnosis of autism, and therefore require a high level of adult mediation to enable effective learning. Most teaching therefore takes place in either individual or small group teaching sessions. Pupils are grouped with other pupils of similar age and ability.

Spiritual, Moral, Social & Cultural Education

Quest school teaches spiritual, moral, social and cultural development through one to one lessons, group lessons, and assemblies.

We encourage pupils to respect specific fundamental British values of:

  • Democracy & the rule of law,
  • Individual liberty,
  • Mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.

Expectations in all areas are adjusted for the age and ability of our pupils, with a particular focus on individual liberty and mutual respect echoed within the Quest’s core school values.

Planning across the curriculum encourages respect for all people, paying particular regard to protected characteristics (as set out in the Equality Act 2010): age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnerships, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation.

Community spirit is encouraged during break and lunch times, with older students role-modelling acceptable behaviours and developing areas of responsibility in the school. Students are regularly taught the importance of their actions and the impact those actions have on others in the school community.

Students are taught right from wrong in respect to civil and criminal law of an age-appropriate nature (relevant to ability of understanding) during SMSC lessons, and are encouraged to develop responsibility within the school during communal activities.

The students also develop an appreciation of their own culture and those of others through curricula activities within school, as well as in the community.

Key Stages 1-3

The Quest School caters for pupils across a wide range of academic ability. The curriculum, across the ability range, is designed to meet the specific needs of the learner group, with a particular focus on:

Academic & Independent Learning,

Language and Communication,

Personal, Social & Emotional Education

Where pupils are able to access the National Curriculum at an age appropriate level, they follow National Framework for English, Maths, Science & ICT, and National Curriculum programmes of study across the remainder of the curriculum. Social and Communication skills are addressed in a number of ways, including pupils’ individual behaviour targets and programmes such as the Social Use of Language programme (SULP).

For pupils with additional learning needs (typically pupils working within P Levels), curriculum delivery is of a ‘small steps’ approach. Pupils have individualised and continually adapted learning programmes. Much of this learning takes place in a one to one setting. However, pupils also work within groups, to develop such skills as listening to each other, taking turns and sharing. These pupils follow differentiated programmes of study across the remainder of the curriculum.

Key Stage 4

Students in KS4 may either follow courses at mainstream academic level, or be working on Programmes of Study at P levels.

KS4 Curriculum

Mainstream ability students:

Pupils follow an academic curriculum leading to external accreditation, including GCSE or Entry level exams, as appropriate to their level of attainment.

PSHE continues to be an essential component of the curriculum, in order to further develop pupils’ skills in the areas of:  Social communication skills, independence and living skills, making choices, Careers education. These aspects of the curriculum are delivered through a range of group sessions and individually designed interventions.

Where appropriate, pupils may participate in the Schools’ Partnership programme at local colleges, which provides a one day per week experience of studying in a college environment, on an individually selected course, as part of pupils’ progression towards transition at Post-16.

Students working at P levels in KS4

Curriculum focuses on:

  • Language & communication
  • Personal, Social & Emotional Education and Independence
  • Core academic skills: Maths, English & ICT
  • Life Skills: Independence in daily living skills, including personal hygiene, cooking, washing and cleaning
  • Work related learning: students begin to participate in on-site work experiences as appropriate to their ability and interests

External Accreditation for all students

All pupils work towards achieving external accreditation at the end of KS4 according to the following criteria:

  • Courses are selected based on the relevance to pupils’ needs and abilities as well as the personal interests of the pupils
  • The purpose of external accreditation is to recognise and celebrate the achievements of pupils but the selection of courses and accreditation will be determined by the needs and functional skills of the pupils rather than for the qualifications themselves
  • Pupils will be involved in the process of choosing options
  • Courses are selected, depending upon individual ability from the following:
  • GCSE or Entry Level (according to individual ability) in English, Maths, ICT and Science (additional subjects may be offered according to students’ abilities)
  • Asdan Certificate of Personal Effectiveness (CoPE)
  • Asdan Transition Challenge
  • Asdan Personal and Social Development

Sixth Form

Mainstream ability students

Pupils working at mainstream academic ability are supported through a carefully planned transition at the end of KS4, to access sixth form at a local school, or a vocational pathway at their local college.

Pupils working at P Levels

During sixth form there is an increased focus on preparing our students for transition to further education and for adult life, with a view to enabling them to live as independently as possible in the future.

The curriculum therefore focuses on:

  • Language & communication
  • Personal, Social & Emotional Education and Independence
  • Key Functional skills: Maths, English & ICT
  • Life Skills: Independence in daily living skills, including personal hygiene, cooking, washing and cleaning
  • Vocational skills: one day per week placement at College. College options are selected to match individual needs of students and choices include:
    • Hadlow college: Range of BTEC courses inc Sports and Activities/ Horticulture/Animal Management
    • White Rocks Farm: BTEC in small animal care
    • Work related learning: students participate in on-site or work experiences appropriate to their interests and abilities
    • Where appropriate, students may have the opportunity to access work experience placements in the community
  • Leisure and Recreation
  • Creative Arts

Pupils continue to work towards external accreditation at the end of sixth form. Courses are selected, depending upon individual ability from the following:

  • Entry Level (according to individual ability) in English, Maths, ICT and Science (additional subjects may be offered according to students’ abilities)
  • Asdan: Towards Independence
  • Asdan: Bronze and Silver Awards
  • Other Asdan awards or certificate as appropriate to the needs of the individual.

A full curriculum programme is available to view from the website.