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Copley Academy

Learning Today, Leading Tomorrow

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GREAT lives

Curriculum Intent

The overall aim of the GREAT lives’ curriculum is to provide pupils with a wide ranging look at life beyond their school experience. We work with both curriculum requirements as set by the government and a plethora of case studies designed to expand the cultural capital of our pupils. The curriculum intent is to help students to engage with lessons, meet the needs of the local community, show understanding and empathy for others and meet our GREAT Values; all in order to succeed in their school careers and beyond. Great Lives is delivered through the tutor programme with Year 7 having an additional hour every fortnight. 


 If parents have any queries about what their children are studying, please do not hesitate to contact Miss Farrelly for Key Stage 3 and Mr Wilson for Key Stage 4. 


Curriculum Content


Year 7

In year 7, we spend time introducing pupils to the ideas and expectations for their time at secondary school, through units titled ‘Resilience’, teamed with an overview of our GREAT Values and expectations around reading and managing emotions and behaviour. We also focus on cultural enrichment through the study of historical figures in order to gain perspective on the world. Pupils also cover government mandated Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) lessons, as well as topics designed to keep pupils safe as they grow older and begin to experience more freedom in their lives.

Year 8

In year 8, pupils develop the skills they have learned in year 7 through a mixture of government mandated topics such as SRE and Drugs education; and topics which will provide them with the knowledge needed to succeed in adult life, such as financial management and support in helping understanding the world around them by looking at, and analysing, the Media. Students also start to explore work-related learning.

Year 9

In year 9, pupils will consolidate the learning that has been undertaken over key stage 3 by learning in more depth about topics they have previously touched upon. This is to enhance their understanding and better prepare them for adult life. such as the RSE  components. Pupils also undertake a unit designed to help them develop their study skills and resilience in preparation for their GCSEs as well as guidance and support for their GCSR Options; and receive further guidance on helping them to stay safe and aware of their environment as they develop into young adults. 

Year 10 In Year 10 students continue to build on their career knowledge and understanding of the world of work alongside further development of financial development skills. Students will explore topics around citizenship, RSE, mental wellbeing and youth crime.
Year 11 In the final year students focus on key study skills and revision in preparation for exams as well as further careers guidance around their post-16 pathways and the options that are available.  Students are provided with support about statement writing,  CV writing and interview processes and techniques 


GCSE Course Details

GREAT Lives does not currently provide a course offer at GCSE, however the skills studied throughout  provide pupils with the tools required to achieve the best results they can including: resilience, study skills and a deepened contextual understanding of the wider world.


In addition, Copley Academy runs a very successful programme which focuses on introducing pupils to the world of work which includes introducing them to workers from different industries and providing extra-curricular trips and culturally enriching experiences.

Suggested Websites


  • Healthy young minds
  • Talk To Frank
  • Drink Aware
  • NHS Smoke Free
  • Tackling Racism
  • Stonewall
  • Get Safe Online
  • Think! Road Safety
  • Connexions


Enrichment Opportunities


GREAT Lives currently provides pupils with a number of in class enrichment experiences through the use of external providers and speakers from a number of organisations on topics ranging from SRE to careers. The school also provides advice on careers and further education in the LRC through the Connexions service.


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