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Curriculum Overview

Merstone School's Curriculum Vision

Vision: At Merstone School our vision is simple but well planned. We will develop the pupils of Merstone School to increase their communication, independence and life skills, overtime.

We believe that the curriculum the pupils follow should enable them to become successful young people who are ready to learn, make progress and achieve.

We aim to develop resilient pupils who have acquired knowledge and skills through creative teaching approaches that support problem solving, communication, self-regulation and learning that goes beyond the classroom.

There are 16 classes across Merstone School, starting from Pebbles Nursery to Diamonds 14-19 Department. Pupils join us at Pebbles Nursery and transition into the Moonstones Reception class. Both of these classes follow the EYFS curriculum. However, for pupils with profound multiple learning difficulties, they join the Ruby Department from Reception age. Pupils are assessed during the Moonstones reception class, and are each then given a pathway deemed suitable for their abilities and individual needs. These pathways range from year 1 to year 10/11 and are across multiple classes,

They are Emerald (Subject specific pathway), Sapphire (Semi Formal Pathway), Topaz (ASC specific pathway) and Ruby (Sensory / Engagement Pathway).

Our curriculum focusses on developing transferable skills that support pupils at each stage in education and continuously work towards life beyond school. The key areas are communication, self-regulation, cognition, self-care, physical development and independence. We offer a happy and secure environment which inspires our pupils to explore, engage and learn safely.

Merstone School's Intent, Implementation and Impact

Intent: Merstone School offers a bespoke curriculum model which is based upon suitable schemes of work which are used solely and across the Merstone School Pathways. We offer a broad enough curriculum to give a wide range of learning experiences and opportunities. However, we also offer a personalised approach to give flexibility for every pupil in every subject area.

Pupils are motivated by meaningful pathway specific programmes of study which support their needs, abilities and prepare them for life beyond Merstone School. Assessment is bespoke for each department and provides pupils and parents with opportunities to celebrate every step of progress.

Implementation: Merstone school provide children with a broad and balanced curriculum and school offer, which supports and challenges pupil’s life skills. We have ability and need’s based pathways model which offer opportunities to progress within and across pathways. Our pathways are:

Merstone Pathways are not defined by age but stage of development and individual needs. Each pathway covers skills, knowledge and understanding across a range of areas of learning.

Teachers use various schemes of work which are subject specific, combined with EHCP targets and smaller IEP targets to give a bespoke approach to each individual to support their development.

At Merstone School, progress and development are not limited to ‘lesson time’ but are in place throughout the entire school day, including break times, personal care routines and when out in the community. We transfer skills learnt in school to the wider community, to support our pupils in having transferable skills which will support their independence.


  • High staff ratio in all classes
  • Clear pathways related to needs and abilities with age ranges carefully considered
  • Quality teaching and learning, which is monitored regularly and evaluated by leaders
  • Systems of assessment specific to age and or pathway needs
  • Progress and attainment monitoring through daily formative assessment and termly progress meetings
  • Variety of interventions based on pupil’s individual needs
  • Close working with parents through day-to-day communication, workshops and training

Impact: Merstone School provides an environment which is safe and supports learning. This will produce pupils who are happy and keen to engage in learning at school and beyond. We celebrate with the parents of pupils their progress and learning and have great feedback that their child is safe and making progress. We have a collation of evidence demonstrating progress journeys over time for pupils on every pathway. Working with pupil’s parents / carers, our destinations and transitions to new learning establishments have an exceptional success rate and are carefully planned for each individual and their needs to succeed in life beyond Merstone School.

Parents or members of the public can find out more about the curriculum our school is following by contacting us.