The Harris Academy Greenwich Curriculum
The Harris Academy Greenwich Curriculum
Our curriculum, like everything at Harris Academy Greenwich, is guided by our core values of integrity, courage, hard work, being kind and taking responsibility. This means we hold dear the belief that every single child and young person at our school is capable of “stepping into their greatness” which is our school vision.
By providing a rigorous, academic curriculum that is rich in carefully sequenced knowledge, our curriculum vision is to enable pupils to excel not only in public examinations but in their interactions with the world, leading to happy and successful lives. We cover the full national curriculum and beyond.
We place a high value on our teachers as experts in their subject areas. We want our pupils to have access to the best that has been thought and said, and with this in mind our teachers think carefully about what to teach and how best to teach it. We want pupils’ future options to be wide, so we do not narrow the curriculum. Instead, we ensure pupils are exposed to a wide body of knowledge through a creatively delivered Key Stage Three curriculum over years 7, 8 and 9. We are not just concerned with preparing pupils for GCSE success: we also think carefully about those pupils whose formal study of a subject will come to an end in Year 9, and prioritise the knowledge that create well-rounded, well-educated individuals with excellent cultural capital.
We have an evidence informed approach to planning and teaching. No fads, no knee-jerk initiatives, just great pedagogy that we know works. This starts with WHAT we teach, not HOW we teach it. We believe pupils are more likely to remember all they have learned if the delivery of that knowledge has been carefully sequenced and planned. We work hard to ensure our curriculum is coherent, with learning building over time, which enables pupils to attach new knowledge to old in a manner that is efficient and sustainable. This curriculum is then implemented skilfully by our stuff who train relentlessly throughout the year to ensure they are at the top of their game. This means our pupils make good progress through our curriculum and are well prepared for their next level of study.
We are unashamedly academic, and as a result we want pupils to know a lot. We know that by knowing a lot in a variety of different subjects, our pupils can develop genuine creativity and critical thinking skills. We publish the knowledge in our ‘knowledge organisers’ that pupils need to master in each subject every term. This helps pupils and parents when they need to revise. Our Knowledge Organisers are published every half term and contain all of the core knowledge the students need, are hence hugely powerful. We test students’ core knowledge daily in lessons, check home learning weekly and test all previous knowledge half termly in The Big Quiz.
At GCSE level, the vast majority (over 86%) are entered for, and perform very well in, EBacc subjects. We believe that nearly all students should study a language all the way through to the end of Year 11 – we live in a multicultural society and we are a part of Europe (regardless of politics!) where speaking a second language is for most second nature.
By ensuring broad coverage of academic subjects, we ensure all pupils of Harris Academy Greenwich are not only prepared for GCSE but for life afterwards, including sixth form study and a great university for those who wish to pursue such a goal.
Numeracy & Literacy Intervention Programme
Our expectation is that all of our pupils will be able to make the post-16 choice that is right for them. Continuing into further and higher education will require the highest standards of attainment in English and maths, and at Harris Academy Greenwich we are determined to achieve this for all of our pupils.
On entry to the school, the literacy and numeracy ability of all pupils is assessed. Those pupils who need the most extra help for literacy are placed on an individual programme of intensive learning, developing their knowledge quickly and effectively to match, as a minimum, the expected literacy standard for their age. All students are given an extra 85 minutes of maths per week throughout KS3 to ensure students are numerate for starting their GCSE mathematics in Year 10.
While we believe that exam success is really important, we also believe that the focus of a great school curriculum should extend pupils’ experiences. School doesn’t just stop at 3.30pm and all students are encouraged to attend at least one club, trip or other experience and there are many to choose from. Through this enhanced curriculum, and the knowledge that we pack into the academic curriculum, students will be leaving us as well-rounded individuals ready to make a difference to their community and to society in general. In short they will be ready both for university and to make a difference in the community and in the nation.
Timing of the School Day
To fit all this in, students either have an extended school day before or after school at least twice per week. Lessons during the day are 85 minutes long. 6th Form are often timetabled into after school classes.
0830 – 0900: PRE / Citizenship (Tuesdays and Thursdays)
0900 – 1025: Period 1
1025 – 1045: Interval
1045 – 1210: Period 2
1210 – 1335: Period 3 (KS4)
1240 – 1405: Period 3 (KS3)
1210 – 1240: Lunch (KS3)
1335 – 1405: Lunch (KS4/5)
1405 – 1330: Period 4
1530 – 1630: Enrichment and compulsory enrichment (by invite)
1530 – 1630 (1800 at exams time): Supervised Prep for KS4/5
For further information about the curriculum, please contact:
Jack Docherty (Assistant Principal) on 0208 859 0133 or via email at