Curriculum Review Overview

Rationale for Changing the Curriculum in Portobello High School

  • Meet Scottish Government guidance
  • Improve access to appropriate courses for all young people
  • Improve attainment through greater depth of learning

Our current curricular model does not meet the requirements of Curriculum for Excellence (CfE).  This is because young people make firm choices about qualifications too early and are not receiving their full entitlement to a Broad General Education up to the end of S3.

Currently, it is difficult to provide a good range of courses at appropriate levels in S4/5/6. Many of the courses in the senior school are mixed level (e.g. Higher/National 5) and it can be challenging to meet the needs of all learners in these classes.  Simply changing these classes to single level ones would severely restrict the range of courses available.

There is a need to review the range of pathways available to Senior Phase (S4/5/6) students to make sure that they are well prepared for their next steps after school, whether that involves the workplace, training, college or university. The changes would increase flexibility for all young people and allow them access to exciting opportunities, which they do not benefit from at present.

Evidence from exam results and research, as well as feedback from young people, families and staff tells us that our young people could attain more by the time they leave school if we make some changes. All the young people who attend Portobello High School stand to benefit from this. Many young people have told us they feel overloaded by the current system and that this affects their wellbeing.

The changes made to the school day in session 2016/17 allowed us to meet our statutory obligations for two PE lessons per week in S1-4, which wasn’t possible in our old building due to lack of facilities, and improved Key Adult Time. While this solved a number of problems, there are further improvements that now need to be made.

You may find the information sheets from the National Parent Forum of Scotland helpful, we have included download links below.

Learner Journey
Learner Progression
Learner Pathways

We also have a Frequently Asked Questions page which you may find helpful.h

S2 course Choice and Curriculum Review

We have just started the Course Choice Process for S2 for this session and held an information evening on Thursday 22 February.  The presentation given at this even can be found here.  This presentation was designed to be a backdrop to a verbal presentation and as such some slides will be of limited use out of context.  However, there is still some useful and interesting data about where we are as a school and some more detail about the plans for the new curriculum structure.