Intent, Implementation and Impact


At The Deanes, our curriculum is underpinned by our iMatter ethos and values.  Our curriculum is instrumental in the fulfilment of our iMatter Promises.  Our curriculum not only reflects the needs of our students and our community, but it promotes a love of learning and personal growth.

We do this with a creative and relevant curriculum which inspires and motivates all students to develop as individuals and achieve academic excellence. We support our students and equip them with the skills and attributes they need to become confident, determined and respectful young adults who have exciting and ambitious aspirations for their futures.

Promise1 full2
Our curriculum supports Promise#1 by:

Developing individuals that understand society, build a firm set of personal morals and engage in the community they live and understand its culture.

Promise2 full
Our curriculum supports Promise#2 by:

Developing the behaviours and habits that learners need to succeed such as concentration, perseverance, imagination, co-operation, enjoyment, self-improvement and curiosity.

Promise3 full
Our curriculum supports Promise#3 by:

Developing the appropriate subject specific knowledge, skills and understanding so that our students flourish, reach and exceed their potential academically, physically and creatively.

Promise4 full
Our curriculum supports Promise#4 by:

Developing future citizens who have a holistic set of skills and values that prepares then for life in a diverse, ever changing, modern world.


Our students achieve academic excellence through a curriculum which teaches them to be:

  • Literate and numerate
  • Prepared for the next stage of education, training or employment
  • Aware of their cultural, mental and moral growth
  • Active and adopt a healthy lifestyle
  • Equipped for the opportunities and responsibilities of adult life including economic well-being
  • Prepared for life in modern Britain and to be aware of how they can contribute and understand their local community
  • Accomplished in essential skills such as cooperation, teamwork, resilience
  • Respectful of others, their environment and themselves, both inside and outside of the classroom.


At The Deanes, we are committed to equality. We aim for every student to fulfil their potential no matter what their needs.  The Deanes is committed to anti-discriminatory practice to promote equality of opportunity and valuing diversity for all children and families. 

We aim to:

  • Provide a secure and accessible environment in which all our students can flourish and all contributions are considered and valued. (Promise#1)
  • Include and value the contribution of all families to our understanding of equality and diversity. (Promise#5)
  • Proactively challenge stereotypes and provide positive, informative messages about gender roles, diverse ethnic and cultural groups and SEND. (Promise#1, Promise#2)
  • Improve our knowledge and understanding of issues of anti-discriminatory practice, promoting equality and valuing diversity. (Promise#1)
  • Make inclusion a thread that runs through all of the activities of the school. (Promise#1, Promise#2)


All subjects have their own Intent statements that feed into our whole school aims.  Furthermore, each subject have yearly plans and detailed termly overviews.  This information can be viewed here.


Key Stage 3

Our Key Stage 3 curriculum model is:

Screenshot 2019 09 02 at 17.46.20

 Screenshot 2019 09 02 at 17.46.29

Key Stage 4

Our Key Stage 4 is run over 3 years (Year 9 – Year 11).  We believe this is right for our students because of the following reasons:

1. Teachers have increased time to cover the depth and breadth of reformed GCSE specifications

2. Teachers can re-visit previous learning in lessons, which deepens the pupils' knowledge and understanding, improves their recall skills and better prepares them for their final examinations

3. Teachers have time in Year 9 to reinforce foundation concepts, which will be built upon as they progress through Years 10 and 11

4. Students have time to explore higher level content, which helps prepare them for the linear A Levels and equivalent Post-16 courses

5. Students are calmer for their GCSE examinations because they feel better prepared

6. We have increased time to run a flexible curriculum that includes enrichment activities, which helps develop our students as rounded, lifelong learners.  For example, Food Technology students gain their Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate.

Our Key Stage 4 curriculum model is:

IScreenshot 2019 09 02 at 17.46.39

Core Subjects

In Key Stage 4, all students at The Deanes must study English Language, English Literature, Mathematics and Combined Science.  In addition, all students follow a course in Physical Education. The course focuses on ensuring that students understand the importance of healthy, active lifestyles – both physically and mentally.  This is complemented by our compulsory PCE lessons, with cover topics such as positive relationships and sexual health. 

This year, we have introduced BTEC Level 2 Enterprise for all students in Year 9.  This course is supported by The Peter Jones Foundation. Students learn about the ideas, mindsets and successes of enterprise and entrepreneurs, as well as developing skills in planning, finance, marketing and how to take a product to market. With a goodwill loan from the Peter Jones Foundation, they develop an idea for a small enterprise of their own, launch it, and then trade their product or service, before reflecting on what they have learned from the experience. During the course, students also develop important enterprise skills, such as problem solving, decision making, innovation, project management, team working and communication.  This course leads on from our Key Stage 3 Enterprise and Finance course.

In 2019, we have introduced Spanish, alongside French, into the curriculum.   It is intended that this change will address the issue of low uptake of languages at Key Stage 4 and re-emphasises the significance of studying a Modern Foreign Language.  We are, however, committed to maximising individual student progress and ensuring that the courses our students study are those that best enable them to pursue their preferred courses in the next stage of their education. 

Option Subjects

All students have the opportunity to choose four Option Subjects in Key Stage 4.  One of these options must be Geography or History.  In order to further ensure that each student has a broad and balanced curriculum, we require all students to choose at least one creative or performing arts subject.

Students then choose an additional two subjects.  We do not block subjects at the time of choosing.  We allow students an open option choice and we aim to accommodate these choices based on the preferences of the cohort, hence ensuring that our curriculum meets the needs of our students (Promise#3).

Character Education

Character Education at The Deanes is an embodiment of our Promise #4: Extensive opportunities for personal development will equip our students with the skills, attributes and values needed for future life.

Deanes Diploma

Students are encouraged to focus on character development alongside academic accomplishment.  Our aim for our students is high academic achievement, a developed understanding of moral and social issues and the ability to act on them as motivated and proactive citizens.  The Deanes Diploma is comprised of a bespoke programme for each young person focussed on their own development. The Deanes Diploma reflects students' individual passions and interests while ensuring that they acquire the necessary skills, attributes and values required to contribute positively to society.  Students are encouraged to identify tasks that they can complete, both inside and outside of school, that work on building identified characteristics and attributes. At the end of each academic term, students’ success in the Deanes Diploma is celebrated at Bronze, Silver and Gold levels.

Deanes Diploma STAGs will be awarded to students who engage in experiences and have demonstrated the skills and values that make up the Deanes Diploma (CMAT Diploma). 

  • Success
  • Togetherness
  • Aspire
  • Growth

Challenger Lessons

Every pupil has a ‘Challenger lesson' as part of their timetabled curriculum offer.  These take place once every two weeks.   Students from across all year groups select a Challenger activity each term.  The activities link to the Deanes Diploma skills and values and are accredited by an AQA Unit Award which lists the skills and experience the students have completed.  Our current Challenger Lesson offer is: 

Title of Challenger Lesson

Course Summary

BTEC Dance

For those students studying BTEC Dance in the Monday after school sessions.

Creative Jewellery making

Using DT workshops students will be able to make jewellery through pewter casting, acrylic and wood.

Duke of Edinburgh

Gain your certificates in Duke of Edinburgh with orienteering, team work and essential life skills.  This course is for students who have already elected Duke of Edinburgh.


Students will be able to produce a series of electronic circuits and make an alarm system. This is not suitable for students who have already completed this challenger in the past.

First Aid

First Aid Awareness - what to do in an emergency, how to perform CPR and how to deal with life threatening incidents that require immediate treatment.

Football Management

The aim of the course is to develop pupils computational thinking, data analysis and algorithmic skill, through the use of gaming.    Pupils will select their team, this can be based on their perception or the team data.  Pupils will organised their team and play against each other on their respective game consoles.

Girls Football

The girls will be learning the rules and regulations of football and how to play football. They will learn about different positions and the importance of warming up and cooling down.

Introduction to Psychology

This course will highlight the most interesting experiments within the field of psychology, discussing the implications of those studies for our understanding of the human mind and human behaviour.  We will explore the brain and some of the cognitive abilities it supports like memory, learning, attention, perception and consciousness. Finally we will discuss various forms of mental illness and the treatments that are used to help those who suffer from them.

Mountain Biking

Learn basic bike maintenance and handling skills over a variety of terrains; local fields, the woods and Hadleigh mountain Bike course used for the 2012 Olympics. Must have own bike and helmet!

RHS Gardening Project

Working towards becoming a Level 5 RHS accredited gardening school.

Regenerating the Quad into a sensory environment to be used by students.

Sign Language

To learn and be able to hold a basic conversation in British Sign Language. You will be learning some of the following:
The alphabet, greetings, family members, numbers and many more.


Opportunity to develop vocal performance skills working on a whole-group song and individual solo performances.
Build confidence with vocal techniques including:
Breath control
Vocal Range

Tennis - learn the basics

Over your 6 sessions you will learn how to move around the court, the zones of the court and the 5 main ways to hit the ball in play.  You will learn the different ways you will need to hold the racquet in order to pull of the intended shot and how you will need to move your body to do so.
You will need to turn up in non-marking tennis shoes (no trainers or running shoes) and either be in full PE Kit or full tennis whites to join in.  Neither of these points are negotiable. 

Theatre Art

This term we will be looking a prop making for the theatre and the importance of multiple use.  Props will be positioned and used in practice.  Health and safety of props will also be covered when sited on stage with use of stage plans.

Wild Deanes

Survey, sample and record all types of living creatures that make The Deanes their home.  This will include hunting for mini-beasts, looking for tracks and signs of mammals and bird watching and identification.



Throughout their time at The Deanes, students will be given numerous opportunities to develop their leadership skills.  We believe that leadership is about learning to lead yourself, as well as leading others. In Key Stage 3, we encourage young leaders to take responsibility for their own learning. They can then develop a sense of responsibility, self-efficacy, and a positive mindset, coupled with planning and organisational skills, which enable them to become better learners. Example of these opportunities include being the Duty Pupil within school, Sports Leaders in PE and acting as a Tour Guide to prospective parents and visitors.  Furthermore, all Key Stage 3 students complete a course endorsed by the Royal Chartered Management Institute entitled ‘Learning to Lead'.

In Key Stage 4, students can engage with a variety of Leadership opportunities, which ensure they leave The Deanes as well-rounded individuals, who demonstrate leadership skills with confidence in all aspects of their future life.  Examples include CMAT Ambassadors, Dance Leaders and the Duke of Edinburgh Award.  Additionally, some students will complete a City and Guilds Level 2 Award in Leadership and Management, accredited through the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM).


During our extensive PSHE programme, we cover many topics ranging from positive mental health to gender–stereotypes, homelessness (supporting the local HARP charity), to substance misuse, bullying and internet safety lessons, with a big focus on ‘healthy positive relationships' as a main part of our SRE. 

We continue to work with Essex Road Safety and our Year 11 students respond well to their annual performance of ‘Dead End' based around the responsibility of becoming a young driver.  Our Year 9 students have also watched a performance of ‘Chelsea's Choice'.  We have recently achieved a Stonewall Bronze Award in recognition of our support to the LGBT community in our school and our push to celebrate equality and diversity.

On a more specific ‘health' focus we continue to carry out the annual Essex – Social Health Education Unit (SHEU) survey across the whole school and the finding's support our Health Needs Assessment, which links in with the school nursing services, PSHE curriculum and our Tutor programme.