Year 9 Preferences

Our aim is to work in partnership with students and parents to create the best curriculum  pathways for our young people into further education, training and ultimately a future of opportunity and success.

You will know that the government have introduced many changes to the qualifications and standards students are expected to achieve in order to give them the best chance of progressing into college or training. As such, please note that all students will study History or Geography at GCSE. Students who have the ability to do well in Modern Foreign Languages will be strongly advised to study French or Spanish. It is worth noting that some of the prestigious ‘Russell Group’ Universities (the best universities in the country) require applicants to have acquired a GCSE in a language subject, depending on the course.

Please also note that whilst we do not envisage changes to the Preferences system, we reserve the right to adapt the curriculum to better meet the needs of our school and students in light of unforeseen government changes.


As always it is inevitable that we will not be able to accommodate all choices for all pupils but I would like to assure you that we work extremely hard to ensure that as many first choices as possible are met!


We know how important this process is and provide a range of opportunities to support our students in selecting their preferences. This support package includes:

 Preferences Assemblies
 Preferences Information Evening
 Careers Interviews
 1-2-1 Preferences Interviews with a member of staff
 The Preferences Booklet and supporting information
 Support from their Tutor

In addition to this support it is essential that students and parents discuss their preferences at home as well; students will no doubt  benefit from the experience and expertise that parents have to offer.

There are some reasons for selecting subjects that can lead to poor choices and you should avoid these dangers:


  1. Choosing a subject, which a friend has chosen.  Friendships change or people move away.  Their choice may not be right for you.
  2. Choosing a subject because “Teacher A” is taking you, or dropping it because “Teacher B” is taking you.  You do not know who will take the course next year.  Do not allow this to influence your choice.
  3.  Choosing a subject because “it is easy”.  There are no “easy choices” when it comes to Key Stage 4.  However, if you are doing well in a subject now, it may be wise to choose it. 


Listen and Talk and accept guidance from:      

Your Tutor, Progress Leader and Senior Leadership Team
Your Subject Teachers
Your Careers Advisor/College Representatives
Your Parents
Older Students



As well as the courses that students choose to follow, there are a number of compulsory ‘core’ subjects that all students will study. These include GCSE courses in English Language, English Literature, Maths & Statistics.

Students will also follow the GCSE Science course that is most appropriate for their ability. Most will study ‘Double Science’ whilst a small number will study ‘Triple Science’.

All students will also undertake a non-examined weekly Physical Education course.


As well as the ‘core’ curriculum that students follow, they will also study up to four other ‘optional’ courses. The Preferences process is designed to allow students to indicate which courses they would prefer to follow. However, it must be stressed that we can not guarantee that all students will be allocated their preferred courses.

It is also worth noting that particular combinations of courses are not allowed:

 Students can not study Art AND Applied Art.
 Students can not study GCSE PE AND BTEC PE.

If you have any questions or queries please email
or ring the main Reception on 02393 063592