The international dimension: curriculum
The learning of a foreign language has been compulsory for the four years of KS2 since September 2014. CAT schools have taken a lead in developing strong links with primary schools to support the teaching and learning of languages from Year 3 onwards.
Comberton and Cambourne partner primary schools deliver a four-year Spanish learning programme, planned and fully-resourced by ASTs at Comberton. Collaboration is crucial, with all those involved meeting half-termly. In seven partner schools, teaching is supported directly by CVC and CamVC teachers.
Melbourn supports French teaching in several partner schools, through the appointment of a French KS2 specialist teacher. There is regular liaison between secondary and primary teachers. All involved are active members of the Association for Language Learning Cambridgeshire Primary Hub.
The Voyager Academy has a very strong working partnership with the Languages Co-ordinator at nearby Discovery Primary School. Staff from both schools run the ALL Peterborough Primary Languages Hub, which exists to support primary teaching in all 55 primary schools across the city.
Teacher training and development
Comberton Village College is a national lead school for languages and a teaching school. All schools within CAT provide CPD for primary and secondary teachers through long-standing networks, and in addition through new DfE-funded initiatives to support developments in the languages curriculum. These include:
- Peterborough Heads of Languages Forum [Voyager]
- Cambridgeshire Heads of Languages Forum [Comberton]
- Association for Languages Cambridgeshire network [Comberton]
- ALL Cambridgeshire Primary Languages Hub [Comberton]
- ALL Peterborough Primary Languages Hub [Voyager and Discovery]
- ALL Connect East (DfE-funded programme for teachers to support the new KS2 and KS3 languages curriculum [all four CAT schools]
In addition to meetings and training events, CAT schools also receive frequent teacher observation and consultation visits. There is also a high level of commitment to SLE and AST outreach work locally, nationally and internationally.
The languages departments within CAT work closely together to ensure that languages provision is outstanding. There is regular sharing of ideas, resources and best practice, facilitated by senior level leadership and oversight of languages teaching and learning across all four schools. All four departments use the same assessment framework at KS2 and KS3, and schemes of work, whilst not identical, share a core commonality.