Find out more about the subjects here at St Margaret's Academy
Rationale and design of the curriculum
Our Vision: To maximise the attainment and achievement of every young person from S1 - S6 ensuring they have a positive and sustained post-school destination.
i) Senior Phase
Our Senior Phase curriculum includes a wide and challenging range of National 3, 4 and 5 courses for all S4 pupils. In the current session, S5/6 pupils are currently undertaking a combination of National 4, National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher qualifications. A growing number of S6 pupils are also undertaking Advanced Higher qualifications. Targeted S4-6 pupils are studying a range of courses at West Lothian College on a Tuesday and Thursday afternoon. These courses include HNC's in Engineering, Computing and Construction and a range of school-based courses. Within the Senior Phase SCQF qualifications including First Aid, Religious Beliefs and Values and Leadership which add valuable skills for learners across their wider curriculum.
The majority of departments within the school offer National 4 and 5 qualifications with some also offering National 3. In the Senior Phase Curriculum, S4 pupils currently select 7 choices in S4, 5 choices in S5 and up to 5 choices in S6 depending on their level of study. A number of pupils undertake an additional Higher or National 5 qualification outside the main timetable in order to maximise their attainment and access their curriculum pathways.
The rationale for the current Senior Phase curriculum is based on the shared values of the school community including entitlement for all and ensuring that the curriculum develops the skills and attributes of the four capacities. The Senior Phase Curriculum is designed to improve attainment and achievement of all young people and ensure progression to positive and sustained post-school destinations.
ii) Junior Phase
The Broad General Education (BGE) at St Margaret's Academy provides young people with a rich programme of learning which focuses on developing the four capacities of CfE and raising standards of Literacy and Numeracy. Over the past three years the BGE has adapted in line with both Local and National policy and in response to the views and opinions of our stake-holders, including pupils, parents and staff. These changes have led to improvements in the levels of attainment and achievement across the BGE and this is evidenced in both the standardised assessment data and the professional judgement of teachers in determining the levels of our young people.
The BGE at St Margaret's Academy is across S1-3; however, the pupils' experience of secondary school begins early in P7 with the primary/secondary transition programme. Additionally, towards the end of the BGE, pupils will work at CfE level 4 which aligns with National Qualifications prior to making their course selections for S4 Senior Phase.
Our curriculum design reflects the four contexts of learning and there is particular strength in the links being made across learning. This is being supported by a collaborative structure with faculties working together in developing the BGE through planning, moderation and applying consistent standards. For example, the STEM collaborative is developing a joint Numeracy programme aligned to pathways which is based on an innovative project and skills based framework.
Our Skills Academy, launched in August 2021, provides a range of courses which link directly to the workplace. Courses including Horticulture, Construction and Beauty will give pupils practical experience alongside an accredited qualification. ESOL is being introduced and will be offered at National 5 and Higher level for learners with an additional language in order to ensure that every young person can achieve a literacy qualification at the highest level for them.
A major focus over the last eighteen months has been the development of the use of digital pedagogy to enhance the learning experience in a blended way both at home and in school. This session we are introducing a bespoke Digital course for S1 and S2 where our students will work towards their first digital award. Each year group will be supported in developing their digital skills and this will enable them to further access the whole curriculum and to increased levels of study. A range of digital qualifications will be offered to pupils at a level appropriate to their skills development.
View the documents in the Download section for more information about St Margaret's Academy curriculum.