Curriculum & Planning

Our curriculum is mainly based on re-engaging young people back into school, and continuing to help them achieve their best possible outcomes, regardless of their educational history. We work with the hospital and community team to improve attendance and help young people work towards achieving nationally recognised qualifications. We have developed our own unique curriculum that is designed to be progressive and personalised to each young person’s needs.

Curriculum Intent

We recognise that to achieve engagement and success, curriculum planning must incorporate flexibility in the face of presenting need, which is consistently changeable. We recognise that as educators our particular skills lay in being adaptable and responsive to an environment which can change frequently, even over a single education session whilst helping all to succeed and make progress in their learning. As a result of our environment and cohort, it is important that our curriculum planning is understood to be flexible, adaptable and as a guide. Our curriculum is rich, broad and balanced, but also tailored to meet the needs of our young people.

The goals of the curriculum offered are:


Specialist Education & Learning Opportunities


The curriculum is tailored to young people at each key stage, with specific pathways dependant on a young person’s age; enrolment at a home school; prior attainment and academic goals.

Each pathway shapes the programme of study that a young person will follow, and then lessons are personalised to engage young people and appropriately challenge them.  If a young person is on roll at a home school, then key teachers will liaise with the home school to ensure that work is transferred over to us. If a young person is not on roll at another school, then we will liaise with the young person and their parent/carer to provide a holistic education package that is appropriate to the level that the young person is baseline assessed at.  Careers is offered at all key stages, with next steps planned with young people, including applying for college post-discharge; apprenticeship exploration and job interview preparation.

Subjects taught or facilitated (*) at each key stage are:

Key Stage 3: English, Maths, Science, ICT Functional Skills, Humanities, PSHE Careers, Art & Music

Key Stage 4: English Functional Skills, English GCSE (Language and Literature), Maths Functional Skills, Maths GCSE, Biology, Chemistry & Physics GCSE, Nutrition & Health (Level 1), ICT Functional Skills, RE GCSE, History GCSE, Geography GCSE, Health and Social Care, PSHE, careers, Art GCSE/Peripatetic & Music GCSE/Peripatetic.

Key Stage 5: A-Level: English Language, English Literature, Maths, Biology, Chemistry*, Physics*, Psychology, Sociology*, Art, Music*. Vocational: Health and Social Care BTEC Level 3 National Diploma/Extended Diploma (with the exception of work experience), Children’s Play, Learning and Development BTEC Level 3 National Diploma (with the exception of work experience), Applied Psychology BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate 

Young people being functional in their day to day lives is a core aspect of their treatment whilst an inpatient at PBC. The school recognise that collaborative work with the OT department is essential to young people’s health and wellbeing. Thus, there are sessions within the school timetable for schoolwork with the OT department. These include (and are evaluated throughout the year):

  • Cooking
  • Community Integration
  • Community Sports 
  • Ward Sports 
  • Selected Home Leave

To ensure the progress of these sessions are measured, they are all linked within a unit of the Level 1 Award for Personal and Social Development as part of the PSHE programme entitled “Healthy Living for Families”. Feedback and progress are gathered from various adults working with young people including: the OT team, Healthcare Assistants, Nurses and family/carers.


Personalised Approach

Each young person, when admitted, will be placed on an individual education plan. Individual Education Plans are our main vehicle to implement a young person’s curriculum. They are designed to plan, holistically, a young person’s education for the duration of the time they are with us, and they are reviewed every half term, and updated on a daily/weekly basis (as necessary).

The IEP includes baseline assessments, the Readiness for Reintegration Scale scores, and SMART targets based on a student’s attendance, and any EHCP/PEP information.   Progress on these targets are then monitored weekly by Key Teachers.


Realising the Curriculum

Our overarching objective is to ensure that all students at the school receive a curriculum that, whilst maintaining its breadth, is personalised to meet every young person’s needs in line with their care and treatment programme.


Education, Health and Care Plan EHCP

An EHCP is a legal document that describes a child or young person’s special educational, health and care needs.  It explains the extra help that will be given to meet those needs and how that help will support the child or young person to achieve what they want to in life.

An EHCP supports a young person all the way until the age of 25.  We have a dedicated member of staff who, if a young person does not have an EHCP, will put an application in place with the young person’s local authority for the young person, in consultation with the young person’s psychiatrist, and the parents/carers.  An EHCP that is already in place will have an annual review completed by our team, and the meeting organised with relevant professionals – both in the community and within the hospital.


Most Able Students

We are committed to helping all students achieve the best they can. In line with all UK schools, we maintain records of students who meet this criteria and provide enrichment to enable these students to excel in their area, in addition to extension activities in lessons. A wide range of provision is used to ensure that students identified in this group are provided with the stimulation to enable them to fulfil their potential.


Provision for students for whom English is an Additional Language (EAL)

We are committed to provide equal opportunities for all of our students and accordingly, we ensure that students are not disadvantaged by language differences. Further advice from the home school or young person’s LEA will be sought and specific support provided so any student with English as an additional language will have the same access and opportunities as students for whom English is the primary language.


Careers Guidance

We have an independent careers advisor who visits Potters Bar Clinic School once each half term, for both one-to-one careers guidance and group sessions on, for example, CV writing and interview techniques.  We also offer careers guidance through our PSHE curriculum which addresses particular career pathways and interests on an individual basis and facilitate work experience where possible.  The use of webinars, external professionals visiting and links with occupational therapy’s Real Work Simulation Programme are all incorporated into sessions so that the Gatsby Benchmarks for Good Career Guidance, as set out by the Department for Education, are met.


Transition to Discharge Placements

There is a multi-disciplinary team approach to discharge, to ensure the safety is the main priority for young people.

Discharges to step down units, the community, or home schools are all facilitated in liaison with parents/carers; social workers; local SEND teams; NEET teams and the team within Potters Bar Clinic so that we ensure education is continued at whichever setting a young person goes to.


Exam & Assessment Results

No students sat GCSE or A-Level exams at Potters Bar Clinic School during the academic year 2020-2021.

Potters Bar Clinic School offers nationally recognised qualifications delivered by the NCFE in:

  • Entry Level 1 to Level 2 Functional Skills English and Maths
  • Level 1 Award in Personal and Social Development (as part of the PSHE curriculum)
  • Level 1 Award in Nutrition & Health
  • Level 1 Award in Introduction to Health, Social Care and Children’s and Young People’s Settings.  

In 2020-2021, two young people had gained qualifications in English Functional Skills, and three young people have gained their qualifications in Maths Functional Skills. In addition, two young people had their Teacher Assessed Grades submitted for their GCSEs to their home schools whilst at PBCS – one young person gained two GCSEs in Combined Science and one young person gained their English Language GCSE.