Skip to content ↓
Lealands High School

Lealands High School

Aspire Believe Achieve

Year 9 Options

The transition from Key Stage 3 to 4 is an exciting time for any young person as they now begin to consider their future and make decisions about the subjects they wish to choose.

This webpage will outline when Year 9 students and parents will have the opportunities to access information, advice and guidance to aid students with their option choices.  

Year 9 Options Timeline



Year 9 parents evening

7th February

Written information and subject related video shared online for parents and students to review.

28th February

Student assembly outlining the options process

26th February

Options parent information evening

4.30-5.15pm OR 5.30-6.15pm

29th February

GCSE Curriculum outlined to students in their core subjects

4th-8th March

Student market place

6th March

Options form distributed

8th March

Options form deadline

17th March


Year 9 Options Introduction From Mr Edwards, Assistant Head.

You have not allowed cookies and this content may contain cookies.

If you would like to view this content please

Year 9 Head of Year Information Video - Miss Cussen

You have not allowed cookies and this content may contain cookies.

If you would like to view this content please


Key Stage Four Subject Information

What are year 9 options?

In Year 10, you will begin your study towards the qualifications you will gain at the end of Year 11. This is a really exciting time – you have studied a range of subjects during Years 7, 8 and 9. In Year 10 and 11 you will focus on the amount and range of subjects that suits you.

Before you make any decisions about what particular subjects you want to study, you need to know exactly what makes up each subject in Years 10 and 11. This information is detailed in the subject tabs on the left hand side of this screen, each subject will give you information about their subject together with a presentation to ensure that you are fully informed.

Why does it matter?

You’ll be studying the subjects you choose for the next two years, and it’s no fun being stuck with one you don’t really like. It’s also worth looking ahead as decisions you make now may narrow your choices later. What do want to do after year 11? Can this help you decide which subjects to choose?

Sometimes, you need a GCSE in a subject in order to study it at A-level. In the same way, university courses have set entry requirements and often require certain subjects at A-level. Check carefully as this is not always the case and you can start some subjects from scratch, both at A-level and university.

What to think about

Take time to think things through.

  • Consider which subjects you are good at, are interested in or enjoy
  • Look at the way courses are marked. If you don’t like exams, you may prefer some
  • subjects which include coursework, such as art or dance.
  • Choosing a balance of subjects may help to keep your future options open.
  • If you’re trying to choose between two subjects, think about how each option fits with your other GCSEs. Does a subject go well with your other choices? Or does a subject provide a welcome change? If you’re taking lots of essay-based subjects, it can be nice to include one choice with a more practical focus.

What is a core subject?

Some subjects are compulsory – this means all pupils will study them and sit exams in these subjects.

There are three core subjects:

1. English – language and literature. This is worth 2 GCSEs.
2. Mathematics
3. Science – you will either study combined science (worth two GCSEs) or separate science (worth three GCSEs).

You will spend more time studying the core subjects than any other subjects – they are very important for your future. Colleges, universities and employers will always check on your results in these subjects. If you do not get at least a Grade 4 in Maths and English you will be required to take the subject again.

What is a non-core subject?

There are lots of other subjects that make up the curriculum at Lealands High school. Many pupils will be expected to study either History or Geography and a Modern Foreign Language – French or Spanish.

All pupils will also study PE to maintain their physical fitness, but there are no exams in this subject. There are many other subjects you can select from which are all detailed on the left of this page. In each subject area you will be given relevant information about the subject together with a video presentation from the subject team to further explain the benefits of studying the subject.

Year 10 curriculum

Subject Year 10
English 5 Hours
Maths 4 Hours
Science 5 Hours
Physical Education 1 Hour
Religion and Society 1 Hour
Option A 3 Hours
Option B 3 Hours
Option C 3 Hours
Total 25 Hours

Recommended pathways

All students are different; therefore we offer a wide variety of courses for students to study. Students have different abilities, so we offer different pathways to study during years 10 and 11 to challenge all students to achieve their potential. The pathways are colour coded and students are assigned to the pathway based on their prior attainment and aptitude for particular subjects.

English English English
Maths Maths Maths
Science Science Science
Physical education Physical education Physical education
Religion and society Religion and society Religion and society
History / Geography History / Geography /
MFL Option Option
Option Option Option

The Blue Pathway

The blue pathway focuses on academic rigor of achieving the English Baccalaureate whilst giving students the opportunity to choose another subject they may enjoy. The English Baccalaureate or Ebacc is made up of English, Maths, Science, History or Geography, and a language. These are curriculum subjects which are widely recognised as relevant preparation for sixth form study.

The Orange Pathway

This involves studying either Geography, History or a Language together with two other options from the range of courses that we offer. This is not an Ebacc pathway. Students will study the core curriculum and have free choice to study a language, humanities and any other two courses relevant to their career aspirations.

The Yellow Pathway

This is a guided pathway for specific students who will liaise with Mr Hall, Ms Watson and Mr Dummett to select appropriate courses in consultation with parents.

How can I decide which subjects I most want to study?

You should use the following steps to help you decide:

1. Work backwards – plan back from the end. Do you have a course you want to study at university/a career in mind? If so, find out what courses are necessary to achieve this.

2. Success – which subjects have you achieved the most academic success in – got the highest grades?

3. Enjoyment – which subjects do you enjoy the most? Don’t think about specific teachers – think about the subject itself and which elements you like and why.

Who can I ask for help?

There is lots of help and advice available for you in thinking about the subjects you want to pursue. You can:

  • Discuss your ideas with your family and friends.
  • Talk to your form tutor.
  • Speak to your Head of Year or PSM
  • Speak to directors of subjects.
  • Speak to individual subject teachers about their subjects.

Qualification Details

Pupils will study towards GCSEs in Years 10 and 11. All pupils will sit their GCSEs at the end of Year 11. GCSEs are designed to be completed in two years, beginning at the start of Year 10.

Some subjects, known as VCERTs, are not given a grade in this way. They are instead assessed according to the following scale:

  • Fail
  • Pass
  • Merit
  • Distinction

VCERT qualifications are more focused on coursework and assignment completion, although often still have at least one examination. They are equivalent to GCSEs in the time needed and the difficulty of the subject.

Curriculum Principles

 Our curriculum is designed to support all young people to become:

  • Successful learners - who enjoy learning, make progress and achieve.
  • Confident individuals - who are able to live safe, healthy and fulfilling lives.
  • Responsible citizens - who make a positive contribution to society.

We provide programmes of learning that respond to students’ individual needs and interests, preparing them for the next stage of their education/training.