The Curriculum

Our curriculum offer takes account of the differing abilities and experiences of our pupils and will provide an education appropriate to individual needs. It will give pupils the opportunity to develop and learn within a supportive atmosphere and foster positive attitudes to learning that lead to success and achievement.

The curriculum at Montacute is skill and context based and encourages active engagement in learning.  The Curriculum Framework includes the fundamental core strands of

  • Communication, Interaction and Literacy 
  • Cognition, Learning and Numeracy
  • Physical and/or sensory
  • Spiritual, Social, emotional, personal and health education

These link directly to the main long term areas of the new Education Health Care Plan (EHCP), and incorporate full consideration of each strand of the preparing adulthood agenda. Progress in each curriculum area is reviewed and reported on as part of the Annual Review process. We set small steps as part of the Individual Education Plan (IEP) and also set learning intentions as part of the termly topics which are specific to each individual child. Montacute's programmes of study are written to be broad, balanced and rich, with an age related progression. 

Specialist teaching approaches are successfully adapted to provide a structured framework for teaching and learning which benefits all the children.  ICT is widely used to support learning, and augmented systems of communication (AAC). 

AAC systems are used extensively and these include Signalong, cueing, PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System) and symbols.  The school’s Senior Speech and Language Therapist is closely involved in training staff and the support of augmented communication and Environmental Control technology.

For more information on how we support communication through the use of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) and how this relates to our Bands, please click here.

 We have three core curricula or Learning Pathways which meet the range of learning needs of all our children and young people. Our pupils are placed in different classes dependent upon their learning style. These classes are broadly age related.

Students who benefit from a multi sensory approach are provided with an informal curriculum which is specifically designed to meet their needs in connecting and responding. These pupils are generally working within Bands 1 and 2.

A structured and active learning style, usually involving short, fast paced sessions, if offered for those students who will benefit from this approach. These students are generally working within Bands 1-3.

For other students, a semi-formal and collaborative curriculum can be highly motivating. These pupils are generally working in Bands 3-6. 

Where one of our students has a particular talent or ability we may look wider than our own school in order to support their needs. We are currently working closely with a mainstream secondary school with this in mind.

All learning styles are usually present for all students but arranging classes where one approach is the dominant one has been shown in our school to greatly support the progress of many. However, we have some students who thrive best with a complete mixture of these approaches and so sometimes we will group some classes on this basis. 

Our overriding principles of organising learning, are that we are led by the needs of our students, and we will use a variety of factors (including friendships) when placing them in class groups. 


More information is available about our Curriculum through the Deputy Head Teacher at School.