Third to Fifth Forms (GCSE)
Students joining RGS are already working at a level ahead of national expectation. For those students who join us in the First Form (Year 7), we help them to work quickly through the important foundation stage in the first two years which allows us to support students to work at a higher level of study a year earlier than at most other schools.
Students’ higher level of ability and the support framework provided by the school sees RGS students start working at GCSE level from the start of the Third Form (Year 9) rather than waiting until the Fourth Form (Year 10) as in most other schools.
GCSE examinations are taken at the end of the Fifth Form (Year 11) with the more able mathematicians optionally sitting a Further Maths qualification alongside their GCSEs.
During a student’s time in the Upper School, we work with both parents and students to help them become architects of their own curriculum pathways ensuring that students make the right choices and right combination for them as an individual. Advice and guidance is offered by staff to both parents and students on an on-going basis. As students are able to start personalising their programmes of study from the start of the Third Form, a year earlier than in most schools, the increased time enables more flexibility to review and change options choices to ensure that students are set up to succeed. Students can choose from our broad and evolving range of options which includes the Arts, Languages and Humanities. Most students will sit 10 GCSEs and all students study Mathematics, English Language, English Literature, Biology, Chemistry and Physics (as three separate sciences).
Having three years to work at GCSE level means students have three years to do what other schools rush students through in just two years. The extra time supports higher attainment and higher GCSE grades that will open up additional opportunities as students apply to top universities. Additionally, the extended three year GCSE course enables RGS students to enjoy significantly greater breadth and depth in their learning.
The extra time available in the Upper School means that we are able to offer an electives programme. This innovative programme of modular options is a key component of our Upper School curriculum and contains a wide range of studies and life skills that are valuable and form part of a great education. These short courses allow students the opportunity to continue an interest or explore a new one without the pressure of an examined course. Whilst the electives available will vary over time, examples might include a new language started ab initio, an art related elective in clay modelling, a programme of enterprise and entrepreneurship, linguistic challenges, photography, stop frame animation, film appreciation, charity related community service or forensic psychology. Physical, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHEE) is a compulsory element for all students.
Students will continue with PE and games lessons each week alongside their academic studies and electives choices.