During primary education and the first three years of secondary education all schools offer a broad and balanced programme, which includes all National Curriculum subjects. The aim is to ensure a sound platform of basic skills, knowledge and understanding and to promote the personal development of all pupils.
The Welsh Assembly Government publishes booklets for parents of primary and secondary pupils that explain the National Curriculum in Wales and how a pupil's progress is measured. These are available from your child's school.
Children in the Early Years are offered a curriculum in accordance with the new Framework for Children's Learning 3-7 years (Foundation Phase). The Foundation Phase is a new approach to learning, combining what is currently known as the Early Years (age 3 to 5 years) and Key Stage 1 of the National Curriculum (age 5 to 7).
From September 2008, all nursery age pupils have been required to follow the new Foundation Phase curriculum, with Reception pupils commencing in September 2009. Year 1 and Year 2 pupils will embark on the Foundation Phase in September 2010 and 2011 respectively.
All year 10 and 11 (4th and 5th secondary years) pupils continue to study the National Curriculum subjects but with some scope for options to suit pupils' individual interests. Parents are fully consulted about these options and about continuing education, training and job opportunities. A careers adviser is attached to each school and counselling and advice are, therefore, readily available. The Welsh Assembly Government's 14-19 Learning Pathways initiative is encouraging schools to develop wider choice and flexibility in terms of learning experiences, including more vocational learning opportunities and collaborative arrangements with other schools and training providers. There is an action plan to be implemented by 2010.
Pembrokeshire schools seek to develop their pupils academically, personally and socially. Each school has a pastoral structure which provides for their care and welfare. At the end of the last stage of compulsory education all schools provide opportunities for pupils to take public examinations. Most pupils enter for the General Certificate of Secondary Examination (GCSE). In addition some students take vocational courses.
The Organisation of the Curriculum
A pupil's progression through the years of compulsory education is divided into key stages. The key stages are the same no matter what the local pattern of school organisation. The table below shows the key stages against the corresponding pupil ages and year numbers.
Some children may be taught in classes with children of a different age group. Head teachers can answer any queries you may have concerning this.
|Key Stage||Description of Year Groups||Age of majority of pupils at end of school year|
|Reception||1st year infant||4 - 5|
|Key Stage 1||Year 1||infant||5 - 6|
|Year 2||infant||6 - 7|
|Key Stage 2||Year 3||1st year junior||7 - 8|
|Year 4||junior||8 - 9|
|Year 5||junior||9 - 10|
|Year 6||junior||10 - 11|
|Key Stage 3||Year 7||1st year secondary||11 - 12|
|Year 8||2nd year secondary||12 - 13|
|Year 9||3rd year secondary||13 - 14|
|Key Stage 4||Year 10||4th year secondary||14 - 15|
|Year 11||5th year secondary||15 - 16|
|Key Stage 5||Year 12||1st year / lower sixth||16 - 17|
|Year 13||2nd year / upper sixth||17 - 18|