At Christ the King Catholic High School, our English curriculum is designed with a clear intent to provide a broad, balanced and challenging education for all students. Through the study of English language and literature, we aim to foster expressive readers, creative writers and effective communicators who are fully prepared for the demands of GCSE study and equipped with the confidence and skills to excel in an ever-changing, competitive world.

We believe that English education provides students with a unique opportunity to explore the world through diverse perspectives, promoting an appreciation for their own cultural heritage and the literary works of other cultures. Central to our curriculum are the fundamental literacy skills of reading, writing and speaking, which we recognise as essential for success across all subjects. We also understand the diverse needs of our students, including those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), varying prior attainment, English as an Additional Language (EAL) learners and high-ability students. Our inclusive approach ensures that our curriculum remains flexible, innovative, relevant and challenging for all students. We are committed to removing barriers to learning and maintaining high expectations for every student.  We collaborate closely with the Learning and Life Skills Department, with an English specialist providing literacy and phonics intervention to some students in Key Stage 3.


Our curriculum builds upon the foundational skills and knowledge acquired at Key Stage 2, immersing students in a diverse range of texts from different eras and places. We encourage students to read critically, using their imagination and make connections to the world around them. Carefully selected texts address significant social and historical issues, fostering mature and inclusive discussions and debates. We strive to develop students' curiosity, resilience and active engagement in their learning. We have a clear ethos that no time should be wasted in an English lesson and so all teachers routinely employ engaging and thought-provoking entry activities and starter tasks which require students to engage as soon as they step foot in the classroom.  The curriculum is progressive and each unit is designed to develop the skills necessary for success at GCSE, creating a cohesive and comprehensive learning experience. 


Moving on to Key Stage 4, our two-year course prepares all students for the two Eduqas GCSEs in English Language and English Literature. We ensure that all students have equal access to the English curriculum, recognising its relevance and empowering nature for their future lives. We emphasise the interleaving of subject content to reinforce prior learning, build confidence and support students' revision for final examinations. While examination success is important, we also aim to nurture well-rounded individuals with comprehensive skills and knowledge.

Reading: Reading plays a fundamental role in our English curriculum at Christ the King. We strive to develop students' enjoyment of reading, recognising its significance for emotional and intellectual growth. Our Reading Challenge rewards programme promotes a love for reading and we integrate reading activities beyond the classroom through designated reading time, reading groups and the Reading Buddy intervention programme where Key Stage 4 students support younger students. 

Beyond the classroom: We believe in the importance of holistic student development and the significance of learning opportunities outside the traditional setting. We offer a range of experiences, including published author visits, theatre trips, entry into local and national writing competitions, and participation in national literacy initiatives. The English Department also significantly contributes to the school’s Extended Learning Day enrichment programme by leading workshops on various topics such as: identifying fake news, awareness and responses to online bullying, Curriculum Vitae (CV) writing, and writing job applications and personal statements. The rigors of the English GCSEs and the way in which the department focuses on the development of independent learning leads to students who are fully equipped for the wider world of further study and employment.

In summary, our progressive curriculum provides a cohesive and comprehensive learning experience, empowering students to become skilled readers, writers, and critical thinkers who appreciate the power of language in various contexts. We are dedicated to equipping our students with the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed in their future endeavours, preparing them for further study and employment.

Please click here for the curriculum overview