Principles underpinning the Curriculum

Principles underpinning the Curriculum in schools that are part of the St Edmundsbury and Ipswich Diocesan Multi-Academy Trust

As part of the family of Church of England Schools, within our Diocesan MAT, it is important that the curriculum itself is theologically rooted and reflects the Church of England vision which embraces the spiritual, physical, intellectual, emotional, moral and social development of children and young people. We offer a vision of human flourishing for all, one that embraces excellence and academic rigour, but sets them in a wider framework. This is worked out theologically and educationally through four basic elements which permeate our vision for education: Wisdom, Hope, Community and Dignity. (Church of England Vision for Education Deeply Christian, Serving the Common Good. Autumn 2016) 

The curriculum is planned to ensure that every pupil is educated for 'life in all its fullness.’ (John 10:10.) The MAT Passport sets out the experiences, planned into the curriculum, that all pupils will have taken part in by the time they leave a MAT school. Each school develops aspects of SMSC through their curriculum. As a MAT, we have been considering how our curriculum principles help develop the spirituality and spiritual journeys of pupils. This can be seen as a journey from experience (windows) through reflection (mirrors) to growth, transformation and action (doors.) 

The principles that underpin our curriculum are as follows: 

Educating for… 

To enable… 

Theological underpinning 

Spiritual capacities developed 

School Provision 

Wisdom, Knowledge and Skills 

Discipline, confidence and delight in seeking wisdom and knowledge, and developing talents in all areas of life. 

God wants us to learn. The Bible says God is infinite, the universe is vast and that life is an amazing mystery. We should never give up learning and use learning in good ways to make a difference to ourselves, others and the world. 

Wisdom is one of the great themes of the bible extending to all areas of life. It is more than the acquisition of new skills. Wisdom is insight into the way life works: a proper understanding of the consequences of our thoughts, words and actions and an awareness of the true value of things. It is rooted in proper reverence for God who is the source of all life and all values. All wisdom comes from God. Proverbs 2: 6

  • intrigued by mystery 
  • awe and wonder 
  • imagination 
  • curiosity 


Whole school curriculum – broad and balanced 


Enrichment opportunities 

Trips and visits 


Collective Worship – reflection Prayer 

Learning behaviours 

Children’s University Global Citizenship




Year 6 Responsibility

School Council

Eco Committee

Archbishop of York Young Leaders Award

Teaching our values

Choice of reading resources to include diversity

MAT Passport



Representing the School

Learning Behaviours

Growth Mindset

Building Blocks / Big Ideas / Key


Assessment Policy

Summative Assessment

Restorative Practice

Picture News

Creativity across the curriculum

Awards / Quality Marks

Hope and Aspiration 

Healing, repair and renewal, coping wisely when things go wrong, opening horizons and guiding people into ways of fulfilling them. 

God wants all his children to know that his love and forgiveness are bigger than anything. God gives us hope; he has big plans for all of us. If we fail or go wrong, we can try again. If things hurt or fall apart, it is not the end. 

True hope is much more than a general idea that things will get better. The writer of the Psalms says to God: ‘My hope is in you’. This is more than wishful thinking. It is instead rooted in the love and faithfulness of God. Even during difficult times biblical writers trust in God’s ‘unfailing love’ and know that he will be true to his promises. This hope is like a firm and steady anchor for our souls. Hebrews 6: 19

  • resilience 
  • forgiveness 
  • open mindedness 
  • reflection 


Courageous Advocacy 

Early Help Offer 

Growth mindset 

Mental health support 

Reconciliation/restorative practice 

High expectations 


Pupil centred curriculum 


Careers work 

SEND provision (inclusion) – outcomes 

PP provision – outcomes 


Thrive / ELSA 

Children’s University 

Provision of extra-curricular activities and take up 

Enrichment – trips, music, residentials, cross MAT visits, awards and quality marks (RE, Science, PE, Arts) 

Jobs and responsibilities that are given to the pupils. 

Personal Development (Ofsted) 

Booster Classes 

Policies link to vision – behaviour policy is aspirational 

Aspirations for staff – NPQ programmes and training. 

Transition Links to other provision / settings – enabling pupils to have hope when they move setting. 

Curriculum – learning about diverse aspirational figures 

Adaptive teaching 

Cultural Capital – providing knowledge and interest that the pupils would not otherwise experience. 

MAT passport 

Ethos and culture – you can live a different way to the way pupils often experience at hope 

YMCA counselling 

Community and Living Well Together 

A core focus on relationships, participation in communities and the qualities of character that enable people to flourish together. 

God made humans to be friends and families who work together and learn to love and care for each other. God is good and being part of his family is good. In his family we support each other with love. 

In a Christian community all are needed, included and valued. Each person is important to the whole. The same message is found in Paul’s image of the Christian community as the body of Christ. Each member of the body shares the joys and sufferings of the others and each depends upon every else. Central to this are relationships. Jesus taught to love your neighbour as yourself. Through this we learn who we are and our responsibility for others. 

Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 

Hebrews 10: 24 

  • empathy 
  • generosity 
  • love 
  • care for others 
  • responsibility for our world 


PSHE curriculum 

RE curriculum and British Values 

SMSC curriculum 

Collective worship 

Involvement in Global Neighbours/ courageous advocacy 

Pupil involvement in roles in school such as school council, playleaders, house captains, head boy and girl 

Pupil voice 

Whole school celebrations 

Involvement in Children’s University 

Participation in local community events such as… 

School fundraising and charity support for… 

Use of Picture News 

Use of Big Ideas 

Visits to other places of worship 

Regular visits to local church 

Reading Dogs/Pets as Therapy 

Approaches to pastoral support such as THRIVE, ELSA 

School house points/ rewards systems to support school values 

Work with local groups such as care home residents 

Liaison and transition work with pre-schools and high schools 

Dignity and Respect 

Respect for the value and preciousness of each person, 

God loves each of us. Nobody is outside of his love and care. We are special and important to him. We pay special attention to those who are disadvantaged and rejected by others just like Jesus did. 

  • self awareness 
  • inner strength and confidence 


Inclusive practice 

Anti bullying 

Pupil premium strategy 

Quality first teaching 

PSHE curriculum 


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