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Curriculum Policy


Cerne Abbas CE VC First School, Duck Street, Cerne Abbas, Dorset. DT2 7LA


Telephone: 01300 341319


Cerne Abbas CE VC First School Curriculum Policy



Date of policyMarch 2023

Date reviewed by the

Governing Body


Member of staff responsible

in Cerne Abbas CE VC

First School

Catherine Cresswell
Review dateApril 2025


Our vision is to be the best we can be.

We are committed to nurturing every child to thrive in a safe and engaging environment based on our Christian values of Peace, Trust, Friendship, Forgiveness, Courage and Joy. We strive to develop happy and confident learners ready to face the challenges of their next steps.


Overview and information


  • This policy provides an overarching framework that translates the values (Friendship, Peace, Trust, Forgiveness, Courage and Joy) and aim of the school (to be the best we can be) into effective teaching and learning. The curriculum is how the school achieves its objective of educating children in the knowledge, skills and understanding that they need in order to lead fulfilling lives.
  • The policy covers both the National Curriculum, which provides the legal foundation and secures an entitlement for all pupils and all that is learned in school, formally and informally and within and beyond the school day through the range of extra-curricular activities that the school organises to enrich the experience of the children. This also includes the ‘hidden curriculum’ – what the children learn from the way they are treated and expected to behave and our golden threads which is how our christian values, the community, spirituality and growth mindset is woven through the curriculum. The latter is what makes our curriculum unique to our school.
  • The policy embraces many other policies and procedures within school including admissions, assessment, charging, collective worship, sex and relationships, drug education, equal opportunities, health and safety, homework, food, performance management, race equality, school visits, SEND, staff discipline, and teaching and learning.
  • The curriculum is all the planned activities that we organise to promote learning and personal growth and development.
  • Our Curriculum Intent (attached at the end of this policy) and individual curriculum subject intents are published on our website. They explain that our curriculum has golden threads which make up the unique curriculum our school provides for our children. Our intention is that it is underpinned by our Christian values of Trust, Peace, Friendship, Forgiveness, Courage and Joy:
  • Inspires and extends opportunities by using our beautiful surrounding community and countryside.
  • Raises aspirations through high expectations
  • Opens children’s eyes to the world beyond
  • Enables children to live happy, healthy, productive lives.
  • It recognises previous learning, provides first hand experiences and allows the children to develop the skills they need to be confident learners who believe their talents can be developed through good strategies. We want learning to be meaningful and memorable so that our pupils are not only ready for each next step in their school journey, but believe they can make a difference to our world.




Our school is in full agreement with the values statement included in the introduction to The National Curriculum Handbook for Primary Teachers in England. (Government National CurriculumAs well as basing our curriculum on our golden threads  we also:



  • Believe in the vital importance of a curriculum that is enjoyable, interesting, fun, and genuinely engages the attention of young children.
  • Value the way in which all children are unique, and our curriculum promotes respect for the views of each individual child, as well as for people of all cultures. We value the spiritual and moral development of each person, as well as their intellectual and physical growth.
  • Value the importance of each person in our community. We organise our curriculum so that we promote co-operation and understanding between all members of our community.
  • Value the rights enjoyed by each person in our society. We respect each child in our school for who they are, and we treat them with fairness and honesty. We aim to enable each person to be successful, and we provide equal opportunities for all children in our school.


The Governing Body


The governing body receives termly reports from the Headteacher detailing:


  • Year groups
  • Comparisons with national averages and similar schools nationally and from the LA
  • SEND and Disadvantaged groups
  • Pupils for whom the curriculum was disapplied (if relevant)
  • The progress of the School Development Plan and the evidence of its impact on standards
  • The nature of any parental complaints concerning the curriculum.


Aims and Objectives


All children have a right to a broad, balanced, and relevant education which provides continuity and progression and takes individual differences into account.  Work in school is planned to meet the requirements of the National Curriculum.


The school aims to:


  • Cater for the needs of individual children of both sexes from all ethnic and social groups, including the most able and those who are experiencing learning difficulties.
  • Prepare the children for the next part of their school career.
  •  Teach children how to grow into positive, responsible people, who can work and co-operate with others.
  • Enable every child to achieve their true potential.
  • Facilitate children's acquisition of knowledge, skills and qualities which will help them to develop intellectually, emotionally, socially, physically, morally, and aesthetically, so that they may become independent, responsible, useful, thinking, confident and considerate members of the community.
  • Involve our community as much as we can in delivering our engaging curriculum.
  • Create and maintain a wide variety of experiences embedded in a rich, varied, broad, exciting, stimulating, and creative curriculum to inspire and motivate children to learn.
  • Ensure that each child's education has continuity and progression.
  • Ensure that there is a match between the child and the tasks s/he is asked to do.
  • Recognise the crucial role which parents play in their children's education and make every effort to encourage parental involvement in the educational process.


We aim that all children should:


  • Learn to be adaptable; how to solve problems in a variety of situations; how to work independently and as members of a team.
  • Develop the ability to make reasoned judgements and choices, based on interpretation and evaluation of relevant information from a variety of sources.
  • Be happy, safe, secure, cheerful, and well balanced.
  • Be enthusiastic and eager to put their best into all activities.
  • Begin acquiring a set of moral values, such as honesty, sincerity, personal responsibility, on which to base their own behaviour.
  • Be expected to behave in a dignified and acceptable way and learn to become responsible for their actions.
  • Care for and take pride in their school.
  • Develop tolerance, respect and appreciation of the feelings and capabilities of others in an unbiased way.
  • Develop non-sexist and non-racist attitudes.
  • Know how to think and solve problems mathematically in a variety of situations using concepts of number, algebra, measurement, shape and space, and handling data.
  • Be able to listen and read for a variety of purposes and be able to convey their meaning accurately and appropriately through speech and writing for a variety of purposes.
  • Develop an enquiring mind and scientific approach to problems.
  • Have an opportunity to solve problems using technological skills.
  • Be capable of communicating their knowledge and feelings through various art forms including art/craft, music, drama and be acquiring appropriate techniques which will enable them to develop their inventiveness and creativity.
  • Know about geographical, historical, and social aspects of the local environment and national heritage and be aware of other times and places and recognise links among family, local, national and international events.
  • Have some knowledge of the beliefs of the major world religions.
  • Develop agility, physical co-ordination, and confidence in and through movement.
  • Know how to apply the basic principles of health, hygiene, and safety.


  • Please see the curriculum intents for each subject area on our school website.


Organisation and Planning


We plan our curriculum in three phases:

  1. We agree a long-term plan for each key stage. This indicates what topics are to be taught in each half term, and to which groups of children. We review our Long-Term Plans on an annual basis.
  2. With our medium-term plans, we give clear guidance on the objectives, teaching strategies and activities that will be used when teaching each topic. As we have adopted the National Curriculum, we take our medium-term planning from these documents. We use some schemes of work to inform our medium-term planning in some subjects.
  3. Our short term plans are those that our teachers write on a weekly or daily basis.  We use these to set out the learning objectives and to identify what resources and activities we are going to use in each lesson.


In the Foundation Stage we adopt an inter-disciplinary topic approach to curriculum planning.  We plan the curriculum carefully, so that there is coherence and full coverage of all aspects of the Foundation Stage Curriculum and early learning goals and there is planned progression in all curriculum areas.


We teach most subjects separately.  This means that, for example, over the three terms of the academic year, each child can experience the full range of the National Curriculum subjects.


We give out Knowledge and Skills Progression Organisers every half term to allow parents and children to understand the learning across the subject areas.


Progression of Skills are used by the teachers to ensure appropriate progression.


Children with Special Needs


The curriculum in our school is designed to provide access and opportunity for all children who attend the school.  If we think it necessary to adapt the curriculum to meet the needs of the individual child, then we do so only after the parents of the child have been consulted.


If a child has a special need, our school does all it can to meet these individual needs.  We comply with the requirements set out in the SEND Code of Practice in providing for children with special needs.  If a child displays signs of having special needs, his/her teacher assesses this need.  In most instances the teacher can provide resources and educational opportunities which meet the child’s needs within the normal class organisation.  If a child’s needs are more severe, we consider the child for an assessment. We then involve the appropriate external agencies when making this assessment.  We always provide additional resources and support for children with special needs.


The school provides an Individual Learning Plan or Provision Map for each of the children who are on the special needs register.  This sets out the nature of the special need and outlines how our school will aim to address the need.  It also sets out targets for improvement, so that we can review and monitor the progress of each child at regular intervals.


We will endeavour to keep parents informed in respect of decisions made and external agencies contacted in assessing a child’s needs.  Parents will also have input of their concerns and ideas as to how the school can address the needs of their child.


The Foundation Stage


The curriculum that we teach in the Early Years class meets the requirements set out in the revised National Curriculum at Foundation Stage.  Our curriculum planning focuses on the Early Learning Goals and on developing children’s skills and experiences, as set out in this document.


Our school fully supports the principle that young children learn through play, and by engaging in well-planned structured activities.  Teaching in the Early Years class builds on the experience of the children in any other settings that they may have attended.


We take children from 3 years old in our Early Years Classroom (see Early Years Policy).

During the children’s first term, their teacher makes a baseline assessment.  Ongoing assessment in the Early Years Classroom forms an important part of the future curriculum planning for each child.


We understand all children need the support of parents and teachers to make good progress in school.  We strive to build positive links with parents of each child by keeping them informed about the way in which the children are being taught and how well each child is progressing.  Each child has their own Learning Journey which is recorded on Tapestry, an on-line way of tracking progress with parental input. We feel it is very important for each child and their parent or carer, to take ownership of their Learning Journey.


The role of the subject leader


The role of the subject leader is to:


  • Provide strategic lead and direction for the subject.
  • Support and offer advice to colleagues on issues related to the subject.
  • Monitor pupil progress in that subject area.
  • Provide efficient resource management for the subject.
  • Access relevant training to keep abreast of developments within their subject area throughout the year.
  • To cascade new educational thinking in the subject to other staff within the school following training.


It is the role of the subject leader to keep up to date with developments in their subject, at both national and local level.  They review the way the subject is taught in the school and plan for improvement.  This development planning links to whole-school objectives.  Each subject leader reviews the curriculum plans for their subject, ensures that there is full coverage of the National Curriculum and that progression is planned into the schemes of work. 


Monitoring and review


Our governing body’s Teaching and Learning committee, which is now part of the Full Governing Board meeting,  is responsible for monitoring the way the school curriculum is implemented.  Each subject area has its own cycle of review and development.


We have named governors for all subject areas in the curriculum.  The governor liaises with the subject leaders of these areas and monitors closely the way the school teaches these subjects.


The Head Teacher is responsible for the day-to-day organisation of the curriculum.


Subject leaders monitor the way their subject is taught throughout the school.  They examine long-term and medium-term planning and ensure that appropriate teaching strategies are used.  Subject leaders also have responsibility for monitoring the way in which resources are stored and managed.


Complaints against the Curriculum


The aims of the school emphasise that the curriculum should meet the needs of each pupil.  Where parents consider that this is not the case, they have the right to make a complaint to members of the governing body.  They will consult with the Head Teacher on how to resolve the complaint. Please see our Complaints Policy.


Parents or carers may complain if they consider the school is not doing one of more of the following:


  • Providing a curriculum to meet the needs of their child;
  • Complying with the law on charging for school activities.
  • Providing religious education and daily collective worship.
  • Providing statutory information.
  • Carrying out a statutory duty.
  • Acting reasonably.


Roles and responsibilities of Head Teacher, other staff and governors


The Head Teacher will:


  • Take all complaints seriously and deal with them sensitively.
  • Request that the complaint is put in writing so that it can be investigated.
  • Respond to the complaint personally or delegate it to an experienced staff member.
  • Involve other members of staff as appropriate.
  • Where necessary, explain the legal position with regard to the National Curriculum and the scope available to the school to make changes.
  • Advise the complainant of their right to pursue the matter with governing body.
  • Ensure the governing body is advised of any complaints and provided with guidance to assist the decision-making process.


The governing body will set up as necessary a Complaints Committee consisting of three governors, with delegated responsibility to hear any complaint, advise the headteacher on the action or decision required, and write to the complainant within two weeks, explaining the action taken.  If the complaint is not upheld, the committee will inform the complainant of their right to appeal to the LA.


Monitoring and evaluation


When the Complaints Committee has had to be convened, it will report to the next meeting of the governing body, indicating the nature of the complaints, the recommended action or decision taken, and the outcome of that decision.


A positive, purposeful and enthusiastic atmosphere

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