Curriculum Structure

We are proud of our curriculum, which is broad, balanced and ensures every student has the opportunity to reach their full potential. Moving from primary to secondary school can be a daunting prospect for children and for their parents! Excellent links with our partner primary schools and our enhanced pastoral care programme in Year 7 supports an effective, smooth transition.

KS3 (Years 7-9)

When students join us in Year 7, they are initially taught all their lessons as a form group. This allows students a ‘settling in’ period, when they can get to know other students in their form and start to find their way around the building together. After approximately four weeks, students are placed into broad ability groups based on a range of available data. Students will be placed in one ability group for maths and science and in another group for English, humanities and their modern foreign language. Students will remain in their mixed ability form groups for all performing and visual arts subjects, computing, PE and PSHEE. The year group is split into ‘populations’, with students in forms PER in one population, forms OMIN in a second population and forms GAT in a third. The move into ability groups within a population means that students will now begin to make a wider circle of friends from other form groups.

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In Year 8, students follow the same basic curriculum; however, they will now be placed into ability groups for the individual subjects: maths, English, science, humanities and MFL, whilst remaining in form groups for the arts, computing and PSHEE. Students will also be introduced to a second foreign language.

In Year 9, students will choose two performing arts subjects from the four subjects on offer (art, music, dance and drama) and will be allocated more curriculum time in science. They will also choose which of the two languages on offer – French or German – they wish to continue studying. Student populations for the core subjects of maths, English, RS and science will move to two populations as opposed to three. This allows much greater flexibility when placing students into appropriate ability groups. These subjects set independently from each other, as in Year 8. Thus, as an example, a student could be in set 1 for English, set 3 for maths and set 4 for science.

KS4 (Years 10 & 11):

Students at Haslingden opt for their KS4 courses in Year 9. Students receive a wealth of information and guidance when choosing their options; we know this can be a very difficult process. Students follow a core curriculum of maths, English, combined science, digital skills, RS, PSHEE and PE/games. They then choose three option subjects from the wide range of courses on offer. All our students must choose at least one subject from the following list:

  • Computer Science
  • French
  • German
  • Geography
  • History
  • Triple Science

Some students will be guided towards the EBacc option, which involves them choosing a language and either History or Geography as two of their three options. Our guided options process ensures that all students follow a broad and balanced curriculum with an appropriate academic diet (some students are guided onto an ASDAN course, which will support their studies across the rest of the curriculum).

Students choose their subjects from the following list:

  • Art, Craft & Design GCSE
  • Business Studies GCSE
  • Computer Science GCSE
  • Dance GCSE
  • Design and Technology GCSE
  • Drama GCSE
  • Food Preparation and Nutrition GCSE
  • French GCSE
  • Geography GCSE
  • German GCSE
  • History GCSE
  • Health and Social Care Cambridge National Award
  • Information Technology Cambridge National Award
  • Media Studies GCSE
  • Music GCSE
  • Triple Science GCSE



The majority of our sixth-form students embark upon studying three A levels or Level 3 courses. A small number of students may choose to study four A Level subjects if their level of ability and commitment demonstrates this is a suitable pathway for them. A number of students study vocational qualifications such as the Cambridge Technical Diploma. Vocational qualifications are available in Business, Criminology, ICT, Media Studies and Health and Social Care. Other students study a combination of different types of qualifications. Each subject is allocated 5 periods a week, along with one supervised independent study period allocated per subject. Subjects currently on offer in our sixth form are:

Business (vocational)
Business Studies A Level
Computer Science
Criminology (vocational)
Drama and Theatre Studies
Design Technology
English Language
English Literature
Film Studies
Further Maths
Health and Social Care (vocational)
ICT (vocational)
Media Studies
Religious Studies
Sport (vocational)

In addition to this curriculum, all our Year 12 students are allocated one supervised period of study time, per subject, per week, alongside their allocated personal study time. Each subject teacher indicates extra activities that students should undertake independently to improve their learning. A quiet, supervised study room, along with an ICT suite, is provided for this purpose.

All our Year 12 students are enrolled on our bespoke Future Leaders programme, which culminates in a nationally recognised qualification that also attracts UCAS points. All students also participate in our enrichment programme, which involves students in a variety of activities including work experience, charity work, the EPQ programme and arts, sports and music clubs.

If you wish to find out more about the curriculum on offer at Haslingden High School, please view the subject-specific pages or contact Ms E Edyvean at school.