Curriculum Planning Booklet

Statement on the curriculum

The governing body of the Gateway Primary Free School believes that it is the entitlement of every child to have access to a curriculum that is rich and varied, challenging and inspiring so that each individual is encouraged and enabled to work towards fulfilling her or his potential to the highest possible standard, thus enabling every child to shape her or his potential for the benefit of her or himself and all.

With this statement in mind the governing body believes that:

  • There should be equal access to opportunities for all irrespective of experience, gender, ethnic backgrounds or disability; individual differences and diversity of cultural background should be valued and respected.
  • The curriculum should be planned to ensure breadth, depth, and relevance, continuity and progression; account of individual needs should be considered at all times.
  • The curriculum should offer challenge, rich learning experiences and targeted support matched to individual needs.
  • There should be high expectations of every child both as a learner and as a person.
  • Every child should be praised for what he or she does well and future targets should be challenging yet achievable.
  • There should be positive help and encouragement when a child has difficulties; mistakes should be seen positively and as an opportunity for learning.
  • The curriculum should enable every child to have positive self-esteem and should encourage every child to feel positively about one another, the community and the environment.

On entry to the Academy your child will normally be in Reception, the Foundation Stage.  The curriculum is divided into areas; communication and language, literacy, maths, understanding the world, expressive arts and design, physical development, personal social and emotional development.

In the first weeks, the class teacher assesses each child to identify the knowledge that s/he has already gained prior to starting school.  At this point it must be emphasised that you are your child’s first teacher and that we value the experiences that you have given your child.  We accept the stage that your child is at in his/her development on entry to the Academy and we will build on this.

This assessment enables teachers to plan specifically for each child and for the class as a whole and is part of your child’s on-going assessment profile in the foundation stage. Later in the first term you will have a meeting with the class teacher who will discuss ways in which you can help your child at home. In planning, the teacher will use the Development Matters curriculumAssessment of how your child is doing in National Curriculum terms will not be made until s/he is in Year 1.

The National Curriculum consists of three core subjects and six foundation subjects.  English, mathematics and science are the core subjects.  History, geography, design & technology, physical education, art, music and computing are the foundation subjects. During their time in the Academy the children have access to the national curriculum and religious education as legislated. Parents do have the right to withdraw their children from religious education and assemblies of a religious nature or collective worship if they wish.

Children in Year 1 will take part in the phonics screening check to confirm the phonic standards are met.  Any child not meeting the standard will complete the check in Year 2.  In Year 2 the children will be assessed against the national standards expected at the end of KS1.

At the end of key stage 2 children take Standard Assessment Tests (SATs) in reading, spelling, punctuation and grammar and maths.  Parents are given their child’s results.  The results for the Academy will be published and compared with the national average for the previous year.  Individual children will not be identified in this case.  At the end of each academic year you will be given a written report about your child’s progress and attainment with next steps targets identified.  

Numbers basics lessons are taught on a daily basis to secure counting, number facts and generalisation. The White Rose scheme of work forms the basis of the mathematics curriculum. Based on a proven concrete-pictorial-abstract approach, White Rose encourages children to explore maths using structured imagery and apparatus in order to understand and explain mathematical concepts. The White Rose approach supports children to:

  • Communicate mathematically
  • Explore relationships
  • Generalize

In maths lessons children will think and communicate mathematically, be active, illustrate their learning in a variety of ways and explore patterns and relationships in order to spot patterns and generate rules.

Children learn to read and write effectively and quickly using the Read Write Inc. Phonics programme. They develop their reading and writing skills through core text lessons and My Book Blog.

We have a thematic approach to the curriculum and you will receive a topic grid each half term sharing key ideas and themes which you are free to develop at home.  Children are encouraged and supported in developing and extending a range of skills and strategies that support their learning now and in the future.


We encourage parents to support their children to build upon the progress the children make at school.  For more detailed information about the home learning opportunities we provide for your child, please refer to our Homework Policy for more details. Click here to view.

Sex Education

The Gateway Primary Free School aim to support young people through their physical, emotional and moral development and reflects current guidance from the Department of Education (2000).  We aim to teach children to respect themselves and others and move with confidence through childhood, through adolescence and in to adulthood. Relationships and sex education will be age-appropriate, building knowledge and life skills over time in a way that prepares pupils for issues they will soon face. Lessons will focus on:

  • different types of relationships, including friendships, family relationships and dealing with strangers
  • how to recognise, understand and build healthy relationships, including self-respect and respect for others, commitment, tolerance, boundaries and consent, and how to manage conflict, and also how to recognise unhealthy relationships;
  • how relationships may affect health and wellbeing, including mental health;
  • healthy relationships and safety online.

This is taught primarily by class teachers supported where appropriate by the school nurse. Sex and relationship education is taught as part of personal, social, health education and the science curriculum. Throughout the school, children will be taught to identify body parts using anatomical words and to begin to understand bodily changes. They will be taught about personal hygiene and the prevention of illness and disease, as well as the human lifecycle.

Parents have the right to withdraw their children from all or part of the sex and relationship education provided at school except for those parts included in the statutory National Curriculum for science.

Religious Education

We follow the Thurrock agreed RE syllabus for teaching Religious Education.  Any parent wishing to withdraw their child from RE should see the Head of School, who will make alternative arrangements for the child concerned.

Curriculum at a glance:

Curriculum LTP