Students in the Academy follow the National Curriculum. Our ‘core business’ is teaching and learning and we ensure that this is of the highest standard. Our aim is to provide a truly personalised education experience for every student in the Academy. Consequently the curriculum at DACA is reviewed annually in order to develop a programme of study which best meets the needs of all our students in order for them to realise their potential.

The Academy curriculum offers a wide range of learning opportunities in and out of the classroom, encouraging students to develop their key skills of literacy, numeracy, and oracy whilst becoming confident and independent learners. Some of the main differences noticed by the students are in how the curriculum is structured, the regular assessment and emphasis on themes of entrepreneurship. The Academy curriculum provides entrepreneurship both as a discrete subject and as a theme underpinning every area of the curriculum.

Learning often takes place in longer lessons or learning sessions. It is not uncommon for a student’s timetabled day to consist of just two extended learning sessions to keep student ‘down-time’ from moving between lessons at a minimum, removing any unnecessary distraction away from learning. Longer learning sessions are broken up by a morning break (breakfast) and an afternoon break (lunch) and students have the opportunity and dedicated space for recreational activity at these times. Every student is encouraged to participate in ‘session three’ of extracurricular or enrichment activity.

Students are regularly assessed on their attainment and progress and receive a report three times per year as part of our Praising Entrepreneurs Programme. Curriculum and pastoral staff continuously monitor student achievement and we welcome parents and carers into school to discuss their son or daughter’s progress. There are opportunities during the year for students and parents and carers to review and celebrate progress, including Induction Day, Parent’s Evening, Year 7 and 12 Settling In Evening and Commendation Assemblies.

In addition to the traditional academic curriculum, there are a range of vocational options available for all students as they progress through the Academy, and an emphasis on promoting participation in extra-curricular activities. Our aim is to provide a truly personalised education for every student in the Academy.

All students study Personal, Social, Health, Citizenship and Economic Education which is delivered through the curriculum and daily activities during tutor time, as well as calendared learning events including volunteering, and opportunities for students to be socially responsible. The spiritual, moral, social and cultural education of students, which helps to prepare students for the responsibilities and experiences of later life, is developed through the calendared weekly focus. Students are encouraged to discuss and think about modern British values and society, as well as the challenges faced across the globe in the technologically diverse 21st century.


Key Stage 3: Years 7 and 8

Key Stage 3 at DACA is a two year curriculum. Students follow the new National Curriculum and are supported to progress in each subject area at the rate that best suits them. In Years 7 and 8 students study English, Maths, Science, IT, Humanities (Geography, History and Religious Education), Design Technology, Creative and Performing Arts, a Modern Foreign Language (French or Spanish), PE and PSHCEE. At the end of Year 8 students make informed choices for their studies in year 9 which prepare them for the rigours of Key Stage 4 in years 10 and 11.
A summary of the time allocation for each subject at Key Stage 3 is shown in the table below.

Subject Year 7 Year 8
English 2 hrs 40 mins 2 hrs 40 mins
Literacy 1 hr 20 mins -
Mathematics 2 hrs 40 mins 4hrs
Science 2 hrs 40 mins 2 hrs 40 mins
Creative and Performing Arts 4hrs 2 hrs 40 mins
Computing 1 hr 20 mins 1 hr 20 mins
Design Technology 2 hrs 40 mins 2 hrs 40 mins
Humanities 2 hrs 40 mins 4hrs
Modern Foreign Languages 2 hrs 40 mins 2 hrs 40 mins
Physical Education 2 hrs 40 mins 2 hrs 40 mins
Entrepreneurship 1 hr 20 mins 1 hr 20 mins


(26 hrs 40 mins)

(26 hrs 40 mins)


Key Stage 4: Years 9, 10 and 11

Key Stage 4 at DACA is an extended three year curriculum. All students work predominantly towards GCSE qualifications and study the core subjects of English Language, Maths, Science, PE and PSHCEE.

Subject Year 10 Year 11
English 5 hrs 20 mins 5 hrs 20 mins
Mathematics 5 hrs 20 mins 5 hrs 20 mins
Science 5 hrs 20 mins 5 hrs 20 mins
Options 8 hrs 5 hrs 20 mins
Additional core time - 2 hrs 40 mins
Physical Education 2 hrs 40 mins 2 hrs 40 mins
  (26 hrs 40 mins) (26 hrs 40 mins)

Students currently in years 10 and 11 have made four guided option choices from a broad mixture of academic and vocational, accredited and non-accredited one or two year courses, including a one year choice at the end of year 10.
Students in year 9 are following a three option pre-GCSE skills route to prepare them for the new style qualifications they will experience in years 10 and 11.

Year 11 options 2014 - 2015
GCSE Film Studies
GCSE Spanish
GCSE History
GCSE Sociology
GCSE Business Studies
OCR Cambridge Technical Computer Studies
GCSE Engineering
BTEC Hospitality

Key Stage 5: Sixth Form

Students choose from a broad range of Level 3 academic and vocational courses, and enrichment Level 2 (GCSE equivalent) qualifications which allow progression opportunities from Key Stage 4 and on to university, employment or further training. In addition to the summary of post 16 choices below, students also have the opportunity to study an Extended Project.

Block A

Block B

Block C

Block D

A Level Chemistry
A Level Maths
A Level Art
Music and Music Technology
A Level Geography
A Level Criminology
BTEC Health & Social Care
BTEC Business Studies


BTEC Applied Science
A Level English Lit & Lang
A Level Photography
A Level Sociology
A Level Psychology
A Level ICT
BTEC Sport



A Level Physics
BTTEC Film & TV Production
A Level Media Studies
A Level Art
BTEC Travel & Tourism
A Level Law
A Level Applied Business Studies
BTEC Sport
A Level Computer Science

A Level Biology
BTEC Performing Arts
A level Psychology
BTEC Technology – Product Design
BTEC Technology – Engineering
BTEC Technology – Textiles
BTEC Technology – Graphics
BTEC Sport
A Level Computer Science