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St Andrew's School

Learning Together, Achieving Together

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Pathways to Independence

At St Andrew's School each student starts on their pathway to adulthood when they join us. We believe that all our students have something valuable to contribute to society, so deliver a curriculum that gives students the skills, knowledge and understanding to be as independent as possible in their adult lives. By "starting with the end in mind", we design teaching and learning programmes that

  • support learners to practice skills in real life situations 
  • solve problems in context; apply skills in new contexts
  • learn about the facilities and services in their local area
  • enable young people to keep safe and ask for help when necessary
  • develop appropriate relationships
  • provide experience of the world of work
  • foster confidence, resilience and a love of learning
  • prepare our leavers for the real world.


To learn more about our curriculum, please click on the link below


St Andrews School

Long term Curriculum Plan

Two year Rolling Programme



Autumn Term

Spring Term

Summer Term


Growing Up &

Moving on

Ready, Steady, Cook

Finding Things Out


Key Stage 3

Me and my school

Local history

Local geography


Healthy Eating

Healthy body

Healthy living

Growing food

Space and other worlds

Scientific enquiry and problem solving

Electricity, forces, light & dark

Key Stage 4

Myself, my feelings and my body

Growing up and changing

Life cycles



Diets veggie, vegan, low calorie

Sourcing food, plants and animals

My place in time

My place in the world


Further Education

My City

Places I can visit

Preparing for a new place

Plan, shop, cook

Meal prep

Kitchen safety

Services that support me

Next steps

Work placements

Life after St Andrew’s School




Autumn Term

Spring Term

Summer Term


Me and My World

Hobbies and interests

Let’s get Physical


Key Stage 3

Me and my family

Family trees

People who can help us

Jobs that people do


Researching possibilities

Making plans

Trying things out

Expressing preferences

Activities in school.


Human bodies

Growing and changing

Human reproduction



Key Stage 4

My City, my country and other cities/countries

Where in the world?


Researching possibilities

Making plans

Trying things out

Expressing preferences

Activities out of school


Human body... the impact of diet and exercise, drugs and lifestyle on our bodies

First Aid


Further Education

Services to help and support me

Things that interest me

All about me and my family

My relationships


Facilities in our city /my local area

How can use these facilities to support me?

Filling my spare time



Sexual relationships

Keeping safe

Protective behaviours

Community health services

The Thistle Curriculum

Values, Attitudes and Personal Characteristics



Tolerance and respect

Happy and Healthy

I ndependent thinking 

Staying safe


Love of Learning

E xpressing yourself 



This describes seven key themes that underpin our work. These themes feature in all aspects of school life; in the way we interact with each other, in our learning experiences in the classroom, outdoors and in the wider community. They provide the foundations for our students as they progress through St Andrew’s and into their adult life.




Thistle Attitudes and Values

Tolerance and respect

We want our students to develop into confident citizens who are active members of their local community. We teach about diversity and promote tolerance, respect, and understanding. We promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.


Happy and Healthy

We recognise that looking after yourself, staying active and participating in physical activities are important to staying healthy in later life, so we encourage participation in daily activities that promote good health. Developing positive habits as a child can lead to increased leisure opportunities in adult life so we provide a range of opportunities for students to participate in different and new experiences. Meal Prep, healthy eating, leisure skills, outdoor education, Forest Schools, creative arts and themed events all contribute to keeping us happy and healthy.


Independent thinker

Independent thinking is the process of making sense of the world based on your own observations and experiences rather than depending on the word of others.

We work with our students to give them the communication skills and confidence to hold their own thoughts and beliefs. They also learn that others may not share their view.

This may take the form of class debates and discussions, Student Voice, contribution to school developments and surveys and participating in the design of curriculum topics. The whole range of communication techniques are encouraged


Stay Safe

St Andrew’s School is a community of people who put safety at the heart of everything they do.

Students learn in an environment where they are confident to learn from their mistakes, to take risks in planned situations and celebrate their successes. We teach about the independence to make the right choices and consequences of poor choices.

This area also teaches how to stay safe using the internet and social media and who to talk to if you feel unhappy, in danger or uncomfortable.



We aim to develop the skills of persistence and determination. We want students not to give up easily and to be confident to keep trying to achieve their goal.

Staff support students to understand what they are aiming for and guide and enable them to achieve. We create exciting learning opportunities that have success built in at all levels to enable students to achieve and succeed. We look for opportunities to challenge pupils to take that next step and support them to “stick at it”

Everyone celebrates and shares personal and group achievements throughout the school through weekly assemblies, certificates of recognition and the annual Prize Giving Ceremony.


Love of Learning

Our students say they love coming to school. They enjoy the seeing their friends, learning new things and interacting with others.

We create interesting and exciting learning opportunities and take full advantage of every moment of the day. We recognise that learning can take anywhere – in school, in the grounds, out in the local area and whilst away on day trips and residential visits. Our residential department takes the opportunity to extend learning beyond the school day through evening activities and independent living skills


Express yourself

At St Andrew’s School we recognise that formal communication methods are not the only way in which students can express themselves.

Art and design, drama, dance and music stimulate creativity and imagination in our students. They provide a means to explore the world through sensory experiences and unique ways to understand and respond to the world, and to communicate with others.

We provide specialist teaching in creative subjects as we recognise the importance of these curriculum areas to the wider development of our students.