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Curriculum (all phases)

For information and guidance about the curriculum offer schools are expected to provide, please see the DfE webpages here. They include information about the ‘national curriculum’ for England to be taught in all local-authority-maintained schools. Requirements to teach religious education (RE) and sex and relationship education (SRE) are also explained.

Ofsted schools research: Ofsted carries out research alongside its main inspection programme to look at specific issues, subjects or policies in more detail. Curriculum intent, implementation and impact have been a key focus over the past few years. The new Education Inspection Framework (EIF) has been informed by this work.

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Local Democracy Week takes place this year from 14 – 18 October and Solihull Council are organising events aimed at Sixth Form students to encourage them to get involved in politics and to increase democratic engagement.  Local Democracy Week is an annual event where local authorities from across the UK and the rest of Europe will be organising events to meet and engage with their residents.

In Solihull, we are organising events that will foster democratic participation at grass roots level and our focus this year will be young people.

We are organising two events; Question Time and our annual Sixth Form Schools' Debating Competition.  Our main audience will be sixth form students (aged 16-18), however if any year 10 or 11 students who are keen to take part would be more than welcome to attend.

Question Time

This year will see our very first question time event that will take place on Wednesday 16 October at The Studio at The Core Theatre, Theatre Square, Homer Road from 1.30pm – 3.30pm.  The format will be the same as the TV programme and I am inviting students to come and quiz their local representatives on topics that affect them locally in Solihull.  It will be a great way for the students to meet the politicians behind the decisions that affect them every day.  We have a great line up of senior councillors and a business leader in Solihull. Please see the attached poster for more details.

Sixth Form Schools' Debating Competition

Last year saw the launch of our first ever Solihull Sixth Form Schools Debating Competition and we are repeating the same event this year on Friday 18 October from 1pm in our Council Chamber.  Last year saw students from John Henry Newman College, Solihull School, The Sixth Form College Solihull, Tudor Grange Academy and Arden Academy all competing for the honours.  Solihull School walked away with our prestigious trophy and will be looking to retain their title this year.  Just like last year, the event will be webcast live on the Council’s website, so family and friends will be able to watch the proceedings and the students taking part will be able to look back at the debates.  You can view the 2018 debates by going to our webcast library.  Teams are made up of four students (three debaters and a timekeeper) and a training session has been organised on Wednesday 2 October from 1 – 3pm to assist the young people taking part and to give them some top tips for debating.  Please see the attached poster for more details.

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This programme is run by the maths Hubs and consists of a blend of collaborative training and bespoke support, aimed at giving your school an introduction to the ‘Big Ideas’ around teaching for mastery and preparing you for future programmes.

The support within the programme will be spread over the academic year, when you will be part of half-termly group workshops with up to six other schools, as well as receiving half-termly school visits bespoke to your needs.  There is no charge for the workshops or the visits from the Mastery Readiness Lead. The programme will involve your maths lead and another teacher and will need to be supported by the headteacher.

There are are currently seven places available for a group of interested Solihull schools (on a first come, first served basis) for support starting this year. If you would like further information or details of how to register for this programme, please contact Donna Wright ( before end of September 2019.

We would like to invite you and your school to take part in a free large-scale art project in collaboration with Lichfield Cathedral and artist Peter Walker, supported using public funding by Arts Council England.

For the last three years, Lichfield Cathedral has worked with schools, organisations, community groups and churches across the district to create art installations that have been on display throughout Advent. Last year we worked with 72 schools and other groups to produce 22,000 doves of peace that were suspended in the cathedral and were visited by over 30,000 people throughout the Christmas period. Previous projects in 2017 and 2016 have included 10,000 angels and 5,000 stars.

This year we will continue our successful engagement programme with a project entitled ‘In the Image and Likeness’ that will celebrate our personal journeys, our individuality and our human commonality. Artist Peter Walker will create the installation from golden framed self-portraits suspended in the centre of Lichfield Cathedral with it forming part of our Christmas event ‘The Cathedral Illuminated 2019: The Beginning’.

We ask you and your students to take part by contributing to this central artwork ‘constellation’ as well as to join many other settings in creating your own version of ‘constellation’ in your school (guidance will be provided). We aim to have a unique series of constellations in participating schools, churches and businesses across the region that will represent a universe of diversity yet commonality, with the central installation unifying them all.

The project has multiple links into the curriculum and is suitable for all age groups, from reception to sixth formers and staff. We would like as many people as possible to be involved and will be asking settings to share images of their constellation displays via social media and the hashtag #imageandlikeness. Over 5,000 people have already taken part by completing their self-portraits during the summer at this year’s Great Exhibition.

The activity

Each pupil is simply asked to draw a self-portrait or write a short statement about their own life on a golden framed postcard that you will then use to create your own simple but effective ‘constellation’ display for your school.

What we will provide

  • A pack of 200 golden framed A5 postcards (more upon request)
  • Guidance and ideas for creating your own bespoke ‘constellation’ display at your school.Guidance for teachers on potential links into the curriculum.

For the central installation at Lichfield Cathedral

We would like to include 10 individuals from each school in the central art installation at Lichfield Cathedral. This could be individuals (children or staff) who may have a special story to tell or have an achievement to be recognised or celebrated. We would like your school to provide a simple head and shoulders photo with correct permissions along with a short paragraph on each telling their stories via email before November 8 2019  (further guidance will be provided). The photographs will be used in the central artwork and some of the stories will also be displayed.

To request further information or to register your school and order your resources please reply via email to before September 27 2019. Resource packs will be distributed before the October half term and are available on a first-come-first-served basis.

We look forward to hearing from you.

With very best wishes

Cathy Fellows | Project Manager
Lichfield Cathedral

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