A World-Class Curriculum and a Knowledge-Rich Environment for All
At Ilkley Grammar School, our mission is to provide a world-class curriculum for all, providing access to rich and “powerful knowledge” (Young, Lambert, 2014) which will enable students to have the currency of choice for their futures.
We recognise the importance of knowledge as a lever for enfranchisement, enabling students to have a “seat at the table” (Obama, M. 2018), to participate and lead discussion, debate and make a positive difference to the community and world around them. At Ilkley Grammar School, all students are entitled to:
- Access to deliberated, rich, powerful knowledge in each subject discipline, as teachers think granularly about what knowledge should be taught, when and why, and students think deeply, critically and curiously, having exposure to the “best that has been thought and said” (Arnold, 1869) in their subjects;
- Access to research and strategies from cognitive science to develop self-regulation, memory and metacognition, so that students learn the curriculum, lead their own learning, generating and multiplying their knowledge and apply it to increasingly complex tasks;
- Access to a balanced and challenging curriculum, personalised to students’ individual needs so that all students may achieve their ‘Personal Best’. Whilst our curriculum is driven by the needs and aspirations of our students rather than performance tables or measures, we ensure all students have access to the academic curriculum and the luxury of choice for a range of ambitious end points;
- Access to scholarship and expert knowledge beyond subject disciplines, in all areas of the curriculum, such as engagement in thought-provoking discussions, development of “cultural literacy” (Hirsch, 1987), citizenship education and skills of rhetoric, expression and communication. Our students develop their appreciation for cooperation, democracy and diversity.
By the end of their journey through the curriculum, students will demonstrate the Personal Best Values and grow in wisdom and stature. Students will:
- Be knowledgeable, show courage and be empowered to think in complex ways, as they move towards mastery and become expert learners;
- Be academically resilient and curious for learning and improvement, motivated to succeed in life in their chosen future pathway;
- Have a developed awareness of how learning occurs, taking responsibility for how they learn, knowing how to transfer information from the working memory to the long-term memory by connecting new knowledge to prior learning;
- Understand democracy, citizenship and how to cooperate and articulate viewpoints that shape the communities and the world around us;
- Expand their frame of reference and develop self-awareness on how they think about the world around them and respect the people in it, recognising the importance of kindness to others and that “our cultural and social selves help to form our thinking” (Robinson, 2018);
- Be proud to have a “seat at the table” and understand how to represent their voices, views and how this then shapes policies as leaders, both at school level and in the wider world.