KS4 Guided Pathways
At Moorside High School, we have many minds but one clear mission – to be unwavering in our demands for academic excellence. Our core purpose is to ensure that every student leaves us ready for their next successful chapter, with our students attending college or university or starting a fulfilling career. Our aim is to enrich lives and inspire ambitions to ensure students thrive in the world around us.
Now you have reached Year 9, it is time to make some decisions about further study at Key Stage 4. Hopefully all the information you are provided with, will support you in making some informed choices about the subjects you will study in Year 10 and 11.
During your time in Year 7, 8 and 9 Moorside High School has provided you with a rich and varied curriculum. In Key Stage 4 (Years 10 and 11) although there are some subjects that you will be required to take, there is now an element of choice in order to allow you more time for subjects to be studied in depth. Please take time to read this information and discuss your option choices with your parents/carers and teachers, to ensure you are making choices that you will have an interest in studying for the next two years.
This is a really exciting part of your educational journey, and we look forward to continuing to see you grow and develop in to well-rounded, socially responsible young adults.
- Mrs H. Ryles-Dean, Headteacher
Guided Pathways Choices Booklet
This booklet contains details of all the courses available at Key Stage 4. It is designed to help students, parents and carers understand the option choices and to enable students to make fully informed decisions. The choices students are going to make are extremely important and should be in consultation with parents/carers, teaching and pastoral staff. Mr Farmer, our Careers advisor is on hand to offer support alongside the Head of Year 9.
Guided Pathways Choices Form
19th January: Year 9 Choices Evening.
For parents/carers only. Takes place on Thursday 19th January, 18:00 - 18:45. We look forward to seeing you there.
W/C 23rd January: Year 9 Choices assemblies.
These are for students only and will inform students about those subjects at KS4 they won’t have studied before or may be unfamiliar with. Please ensure your child is in full attendance all week.
23rd January – 10th February: Year 9 Choices Interviews.
These will take place with either a senior member of staff, a Head of Year or our Careers Advisor. Your child should bring their Choices with them written down to this interview and will be informed of the date/time/location by their form tutor.
7th February: Year 9 Parents’ Evening 15:30 - 18:00.
This is an extremely important Parents’ Evening so that you can be well-informed about your child’s progress in their subjects and ask any additional questions you may have about Year 9 Choices. This will be face to face with bookings via school cloud, more information will be circulated nearer the time.
17th February: Deadline for the Year 9 Choices form.
Parents should oversee the completion of this form to ensure they are aware of their child’s choices.
At these events we hopefully enhance the information you already have, and will enable you to make well-informed decisions for your option choices for Year 10 and 11. It is important to note, choices made at Key Stage 4 can form and facilitate the basis of further study or training at Key Stage 5.
The Choices process has been designed to maximise choices without restricting potential subject clashes into separate option blocks. Once all the options choice forms are collated, the curriculum team will work over the coming months to ensure wherever possible students will be able to follow their first or second choices.
The final option subject choices will be confirmed in the summer term.
Read the options booklet carefully.
The options booklet is designed to give an overview of each subject you can choose to study in Year 10 and 11. Think about the qualifications you might enjoy, which subjects do you find interesting? Read about what you will study and how this is assessed. Some courses may offer coursework, while others are completely exam based.
Talk about your options.
Talking to people about your options choices is a really important part of the process. Subject teachers will be able to give you more information about the specifics of the course you will study. There will be an Options Evening on the 19th of January where you and your parents will be able to speak to members of the Senior Leadership Team about courses and their requirements. In addition, Year 9 Parents Evening is being held on the 7th of February so parents can ask your subject teachers any specific questions relating to your progress in subjects.
Speak to people at home too. Speak to parents about your options choices, they may be able to give you some advice. Siblings or other family members of a similar age might also be able to give you advice about the process.
Consider your future.
Think about what type of career you might want to do in the future. Are there any qualifications that would be more helpful for that career? If you are not sure, make an appointment with the school careers advisor Mr Farmer.
If you aren’t sure what type of career you would like to pursue, consider keeping your options choices open and picking subjects that keep a wide range of options available to you.
Are you choosing subjects for the right reasons?
Don’t pick subjects because your friend is picking them, the chances are you won’t end up in the same class. Also don’t pick a subject because you like a particular teacher, you may not end up having them at GCSE. You should pick subjects you enjoy because you enjoy them and want to learn more about them.
When does the options process take place?
The options process takes place in the spring term. Dates of deadlines in the options process will be detailed in the options pathways booklet.
How many subjects will I study?
All students will study English Language, English Literature, Mathematics and Science double award. Students will also pick 3 subjects as options to study and gain GCSEs in.
Where can I find information about potential options subjects?
The information for each course can be found in the options booklet which will be printed and given to students ahead of the options information evening. You can also find an electronic copy on our website.
Is there setting at GCSE?
Students are put in to sets for English, Maths and Science. Options subject groups are typically mixed ability.
When do GCSE subjects start?
Students will begin studying their GCSE courses when they return to school in September.
Why do I have to pick reserve choices?
We cannot guarantee at this stage that all the courses included in this booklet will be offered in September 2023. If there is very low demand for a particular subject it may not be possible to run the course. Therefore, we ask students to pick reserve choices which they will study in the event a particular course cannot run.
What is the EBacc?
The English Baccalaureate is a group of qualifications. The EBacc is not a qualification in its own right – it’s a combination of GCSE subjects, that offer a wide range of knowledge and skills to young people. To achieve the English Baccalaureate, students will need a good GCSE grade (9-5) in English, Maths, Science, a Modern Foreign Language, and History or Geography. Universities consider these subjects to be useful for higher education.
What if I change my mind about my options choices?
In the event a student chooses a subject then wishes to swap to another, this should be discussed with their head of year. Once we have started the GCSE courses, any changes would mean that pupils have missed vital work on key content and skills. No changes will be permitted after the first 2 weeks of the start of the term in September. Any changes after this date would only be authorised in exceptional circumstances and at the discretion of the Headteacher.
Who can I talk to about the options process?
Students are encouraged to make an appointment with Mr Farmer, our careers advisor to discuss options. They can also speak to their subject teachers, form tutor or head of year.
We also encourage students to have conversations about options at home with parents.
"Top Tips and FAQ" sheets can be downloaded below. If you require any further support or guidance, please do contact your child's Head of Year or our Transition Co-ordinator. For further support around career choices, please click here to visit our Careers Education, Information, Advice and Guidance page.