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2. Introduction from Mr Derbyshire

Introduction 

The Phoenix Collegiate Options – Your Curriculum for 2021-2023

All students at Phoenix study the following core, compulsory subjects:

• English Language and Literature (taught as ‘English’ – 5 hours per week)

• Mathematics (4 hours per week)

• Science: Double Award (5 hours per week)

In addition to the above, all students have to study Citizenship, Sex and Health Education, Personal Development, Religious Education alongside Careers Information & Guidance (CIAG).This content is delivered through a series of Student Enrichment Days.

The option process:

Within these pages , you will find information about the two different Pathways available to you as you head into Year 10, along with information about the optional subjects and your option form. Those students who have been recommended to follow Pathway 1 will have received a letter informing them of this. These recommendations have been based on your child’s work throughout Key Stage 3, and the opinions of your Subject Teachers.

You are required to study specific subjects in order to ensure you achieve “8 qualifying subjects”. All available options meet these requirements.

Please note that some subjects have very specific entry requirements, which are detailed on each page. If you are unsure about any of these requirements, or any of the information within each subject, please speak directly to a member of staff within that department.

 

Pathway 1

The English Baccalaureate (EBACC.)

Pathway 2

The Academic Route

Those students that have been recommended to follow the EBACC route have been chosen based upon their academic performance over the last three years. It is expected that these students will study either History or Geography, a language and one other subject. This will enable a clear pathway for academic study through to university.

This route is encouraged for the majority of students to follow. It ensures students have the correct combination of subjects to complete for Sixth Form / college places. Students study one of the following: Geography, History or a Language (including home language if available) along with a   combination of academic and vocational subject choices.

Questions?

Think about what you might do after Year 11. Most of you will continue in Further Education or go onto training schemes. How will the subjects you choose now help you in the future? 

Spend time finding out about each subject. What topics are studied? What learning experiences are there? What does the work involve?

Who can you talk to?

You can talk to; Form tutors, Subject teachers, members of the School Leadership Team, Mrs L Edge Connexions.

 

Do’s and Don’ts

 

There are some golden rules when making option choices:

   DON’T pick a subject because…

  • A friend is doing it; you may be in different groups, it might be good for your friend but not for you
  • You think it is easy - all subjects involve hard work
  • You like the teacher - you might be taught by a different teacher
  • It’s new - new subjects are likely to be just as challenging as those you have studied previously.
  • Let someone else make up your mind for you - you have to live with the decision so get it right!
  • Your parents say they would have liked to have done it – they are not you!

DO pick a subject because…

  • Your Progress Report tells you that you are on target
  • You get good results in the subject
  • You enjoy the subject
  • You find the subject interesting
  • You have found out that it is essential for your future career.

Making your choices – FAQs

 Listed below are some of the most frequently asked questions by our students and their parents; the answers to which may help you in making sensible choices:- 

Do I need to choose option subjects based on what I want to do when I leave school?

No! The core subjects (Maths, English, Science and PE, PSHE/Citizenship) give the variety and breadth required for a wide range of careers. Remember, that as you mature and have different life experiences, you might change your mind as to what you wish to do anyway. If you have no idea what you would like to do in the future, it might be an idea to speak to our school careers’ officer, Mrs Edge. 

What happens if I don’t like a subject after I have been doing it for a few weeks?

At Phoenix we try to provide you with plenty of advice and guidance so that you make the right decision. All your teachers are always willing to speak with you personally to make sure that you make that decision.  

How can I advise my child when I know so little about today’s courses and careers?

Obviously, as their parent you know your son/daughter better than anyone and so you are in the best position to advise them, even if you aren’t familiar with the rapidly changing world of education. The information in this booklet will help you.

What is the English Baccalaureate?

The government believes that it is important to recognise students’ achievements across a core of selected academic subjects. The English Baccalaureate will cover achievement in English, Mathematics, Science, Modern Foreign Languages, Computer Science, History and Geography. 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/english-baccalaureate-ebacc/english-baccalaureate-ebacc

 

What are BTEC qualifications?

BTECs are vocational courses introducing you to the skills needed for work in a particular area. They are valuable to you if you have a particular career in mind but are also helpful even if you are unlikely to work in the area in question. This is because they provide you with the opportunity to develop the skills needed for adult life. Recently, the government has sought to restrict the number of BTEC courses any one student may follow.

 

What happens after Year 11?

When you have successfully completed your qualifications at Key Stage Four, you will be ready to move on to the next level. Those students obtaining five or more good GCSE grades, including English and Maths, will progress to Level 3 Advanced Level study.  The Phoenix Collegiate has a large and extremely successful Sixth Form, which offers our young people the opportunity to follow a range of options, suited to their individual needs. 

The Options Timetable

Prior to Options Evening

Prior to the options evening there will be a week of dedicated tutor time with Year 9s. During this time tutors will encourage your child to perform a Self-review. In this self-review your child will be asked questions such as

  • What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • What are your future career options?
  • What are your favourite subjects?

 

Week commencing the 25th January those students who have been recommended to follow pathway 1 will have received a letter. All option pages will be made available on the website.

Between the 25th January and the 5th February, there will be an opportunity for students to discuss their options with the careers advisor Mrs Edge during Lunchtime drop in sessions. Using teams between 1.15 – and 2.00pm  See table below.

Week 1

Mon 25th

Tues 26th

Thurs 28th  

Fri 29st 

Maple

Oak

Rowan

Willow

Week 2

Mon 1st 

Tues 2nd 

Thurs 4th

Fri 5Tth

Alder

Beech

Juniper

Free

 

Thursday 4th February 2021, 4.00pm – 7:00pm

All details for the Year 9 Option Virtual Options Evening is available in the following pages .

Thursday 18th February 2021   DEADLINE - Option to be completed on line. Be aware that some subjects will fill up quickly so please complete your form as soon as possible.

Week commencing Monday 1st March 2021 Individual discussions will be held if needed to finalise choices.

Monday 14th June 2021 Confirmation of choices letters sent out via email.

Thursday 24th June 2021 4.00pm -7.00pm Year 9 Virtual Parents Evening.

Year 9 Parents evening – this will be an opportunity to discuss your child’s progress and ask any further      questions regarding the best option choices that your child has taken.

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Mrs M Bytheway
Phoenix Collegiate
Clarkes Lane,
West Bromwich,
West Midlands,
B71-2BX

T: 0121 588 8384E: info@phoenix.sandwell.sch.uk