In a recent OFSTED subject-specific inspection the curriculum and leadership and management of English were described as ‘outstanding’. The English Department at the English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College aims to work towards the fulfilment of the School Mission Statement.

The fundamental aims of the English department are to:

  • provide opportunities to develop speaking and listening skills that will enable students to speak appropriately in a given context, adapting their talk to suit the purpose and the audience;
  • develop reading skills, using a range of texts from different periods, cultures and genres to enable students to be able to understand the conventions writers use and to understand their effects;
  • encourage a love for reading and engage students with an enthusiasm for language and how writers use it in different ways;
  • provide opportunities to enable students to write appropriately and accurately to suit the purpose and the audience;
  • encourage students to be aware of the conventions of types of writing and to adapt them successfully in their own writing

As a team of professionals we aim to deliver the curriculum within the Christian context of our school.

See the latest news from the English Department here.


Keystage 3

Throughout Key Stage 3 students study a wide range of topic areas, these cover: Shakespeare, poetry, extended prose, short stories, thematic studies, non-fiction and multi-modal text types. The curriculum at KS3 is innovative and engaging and has multiple opportunities for students to make an exceptional level of progress. At the end of Key Stage 3 all students complete the L1 or L2 Functional Skills tests in English as a foundation for GCSE study. In Year 7 students have one double lesson per week of Drama – this is also linked to developing the students’ literacy skills through performance and to further develop their communication skills.

Keystage 4

Students are set based on their prior attainment and their target grade at KS4 – this allows for both the teacher and the student to ensure skills are developed at the correct level and that challenge is an intrinsic part of teaching and learning.

In English we offer three pathways (AQA):

  • Pathway 1: GCSE English Language and English Literature
  • Pathway 2: GCSE English, with the possibility of GCSE Media Studies
  • Pathway 3: GCSE English and L2 Functional Skills

In addition to the ‘core’ pathways above, students have the opportunity to opt for GCSE Drama and/or BTEC Dance.

Keystage 5

AS/A2 English Language – This course encourages students to develop their interest in and appreciation of English Language, through learning about its structures and its functions, its developments and its variations.

  • ENGB1: Categorising Texts. This unit is an introduction to the study of language, focusing on three specific social contexts: Language and Gender and Language and Technology.
  • ENGB2: Creating Texts. The aim here is for you to produce writing in different genres and for different audiences and for different purposes.

AS/A2 English Literature – This course aims to broaden your mind by reading and analysing a range of literary texts, focusing initially on how narrative works in texts and how connections can be made across texts through the use of different narratives; you will then go on to study critical theory and also elements of the gothic genre.

AS/A2 English (Combined) – This course is built around one central principle: to provide a full and coherent integration of literary and linguistic study in each of the four units.

AS/A2 Media Studies

AS/A2 Performing Arts