Our curriculum

Our students often arrive in our academies with many barriers to their learning. They often have unrecognised learning and emotional needs and have experienced failure in pervious educational settings. Our commitment to our students is that we will offer them a curriculum and approach which will help us find the key to each student’s needs.

We want our students:

  • to enjoy their learning, achieve exceptionally well and take confident steps on the next part of their learning and life journey
  • to learn character and resilience to equip them for the world in which they live
  • to contribute to their communities and become confident citizens.

Traditional approaches have failed our students. Our curriculum is based on research of a pedagogical approach, Expeditionary Learning, which is highly successful globally, not only in accelerating learning and achievement but also in serving students who have experienced disadvantage, trauma and barriers to their learning.

The approach has teamwork, courage and compassion at its heart, and is built on 10 founding principles:

1. The Primacy of Self Discovery
2. The Having of Wonderful Ideas
3. The Responsibility for Learning
4. Empathy and Caring
5. Success and Failure
6. Collaboration and Competition
7. Diversity and Inclusion
8. The Natural World
9. Solitude and Reflection
10. Service and Compassion

The premise of Expeditionary Learning is that students will be judged in the adult world of work by the quality of their work and the quality of their character, as well as by their results. Student excellence is at the core of Expeditionary Learning and focused on three main areas:

  • Mastery of knowledge and skills
  • Character
  • High quality student work

and is based on a foundation of:

  • Real-world curriculum experiences
  • Outstanding teaching
  • Rigorous and high-quality critique and feedback
  • Leadership at all levels within the organisation, including student leadership
  • A culture of respect

Our EL curriculum will be delivered through project-based learning, co-created by highly skilled practitioners, linked to three learning pathways:

  • Language, Communication and the Arts
  • STEM & Vocational
  • Society, Culture, Outdoor & Service Learning

Our implementation model is aligned to our values. Our students deserve the best of opportunities, delivered in an appropriate way.

Our primary provision (KS2)

 Our KS2 pupils learn through the same connected, project-based Expeditionary Learning approach. Our skilled practitioners co-create Learning Expeditions specifically to meet the emotional and learning needs of our children. Our KS2 students also take part in horse riding & swimming.




Our secondary provision (KS3 and KS4)

At our academy KS4 students all follow the core offer of:
GCSE English Language (AQA) / Step up into English Gold, Silver or Bronze
GCSE Mathematics (AQA) / Step up into Maths Gold, Silver or Bronze
GCSE Biology / Step up into Biology Gold, Silver or Bronze
Physical Activity
ICT (functional skills)

Students then have the opportunity to choose one option subject from the follow list:

Motor Vehicle Maintenance (available from May 2020)
GCSE Arts Award
GCSE PE/Health and Fitness V Cert
Health and Social care OCN
AQA Single Awards – if a student has a specific interest in a subject outside of this offer we aim to provide resources to be able to study this

As part of our careers programme, we ensure that pupils in years 8-11 find out about technical education qualifications and apprenticeships opportunities. Pupils will have the opportunity to hear from a range of local providers about the opportunities they offer – through options evenings, assemblies, group discussions and taster events. Our pupils are also shown how to make applications for the full range of academic and technical courses available to them. Find our more about the careers advice we offer.

If you would like any further details about the curriculum offered at Olive AP Academy – Suffolk please contact the main academy office. T: 01449 613 931