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Our Ethos and Curriculum Intent  (what we want our children to know and be able to do by the time they leave our school). 

Our work is underpinned by the de Ferrer’s Trust vision:

‘To ensure that all the children and young people in our care have the opportunity to fulfil their potential through achieving highly regardless of their ability or background.’

Our schools are reflective of the partnerships we have both within the Trust and within the wider local area.  We have a shared aspiration for our children to be caring; resilient and honest with a personal ambition to achieve their very best.

We all aim to provide a safe, happy and healthy environment in which all children and adults are encouraged to be creative, confident and enquiring individuals in an atmosphere of mutual trust, respect and support. We want our children to be successful, to love learning and to move onto secondary school with the skills, knowledge and understanding that will enable them to thrive.

The four primary age schools within the trust operate in different contexts.  At Horninglow we have a mixed catchment in a deprived area with a variety of ethnicities. We have children with 12 different home languages.

Our curriculum has at its core the national curriculum which we see as the basis on which we have built Horninglow’s curriculum.  The Principals of the four schools have worked closely together to agree a core curriculum structure based on skills, knowledge and understanding.  This process began by identifying clear progression and sequencing within subject areas.

Each school has built upon this core to meet individual needs and contexts, with the opportunities  for staff across schools to work collaboratively.


Our curriculum model uses a thematic approach, all four schools have identified subject leaders to ensure subject equity.  We see learning as an ascending spiral with sufficient repetition to ensure that learning becomes embedded and secure.  Our programmes have been designed to link together the different subject areas and objectives for each year group/phase into themes following our agreed sequence and progression of core skills, knowledge and understanding evidenced through our medium term planning.  We know that children learn best when they are supported to make connections between the different areas of their learning building on prior knowledge. This approach makes the subjects more relevant and interesting for our pupils who in many cases have little experience of the world outside their immediate location.


Following the publication of the research into curriculum (HMCI 18:9:2018 ) the staff discussed the two terms skills and knowledge.  Our shared understanding is that knowledge is facts and information and skills are the application of knowledge in a range of contexts.  We adhere to the HMCI comment ‘ knowledge underpins and enables the application of skill’ and we understand that both need to be developed alongside one another.

We are inclusive schools,  evidenced by planning for specific needs of individuals and groups eg, SEND, EAL, disadvantaged and the more able. Our curriculum design is bespoke to the needs of our children and is flexible to meet changing needs.  We use evidence from our assessment to guide our curriculum development.

Here at Horninglow Primary: a de Ferrers Trust Academy,  we have introduced a creative curriculum based around the   Cornerstones Curriculum, a nationally recognised approach for delivering outstanding learning opportunities for children.

The Cornerstones Curriculum  is a creative and thematic approach to learning that is mapped to the 2014 Primary National Curriculum to ensure comprehensive coverage of national expectations. This is appropriate to the needs of our children because it enables them to engage in experiences and cultures that they otherwise would not encounter. Our curriculum is delivered through Imaginative Learning Projects (ILPs) which will provide a rich menu of exciting and motivating learning activities that make creative links between all aspects of our children’s learning. 


We believe children learn better when they are encouraged to use their imagination and apply their learning to engaging contexts. Our new curriculum will provide lots of learning challenges throughout the academic year that will require children to solve problems, apply themselves creatively and express their knowledge and understanding effectively across the curriculum. We also encourage parents to become involved in this process by inviting them to curriculum assemblies and workshops to help home-school links in these areas. 


Cornerstones also provide a rigorous essential skills framework that outlines the end of year expectations in all subjects. These essential skills are tied to activities and are age related so that staff can track children’s progress and identify their individual learning needs. Staff update these frameworks half termly, and use the gap analysis to ensure that all children across their phase have full access to the entire foundation curriculum.

In addition to the ILPs we ensure full coverage and an enriched curriculum by having whole school science, diversity and local history weeks.


Assessment of the curriculum:

We use formative and summative assessment processes to enable us to make accurate judgements of both attainment and progress this enables us to identify any gaps in knowledge or skills and to adapt our planning to close these gaps.  Knowledge gained by regularly reviewing our assessment processes and outcomes, enable us to continue to develop our school curriculum to inform and improve our future curriculum design



The impact of our curriculum is that our children have a broad range of experiences, are enthusiastic learners and are well prepared for entry into KS3 and beyond .  Our children demonstrate good learning behaviours for example resilience and perseverance and are motivated by a strong personal sense of morality.