Equipping every student with the toolkit to live a happy, successful and enriching life.

Our Curriculum: Delivering for every student

Our curriculum is broad and balanced and designed to equip every student with the toolkit to live a happy, successful and enriching life. We work tirelessly with our students and families to ensure every student finds a learning pathway with which they can thrive at Ormiston Rivers Academy. We equip our students with the skills and knowledge to leave us ready to take on the world, and all that it may challenge them with.

At Ormiston Rivers Academy we aim to provide a broad and balanced curriculum which:


  • Meets all statutory requirements at Key Stages 3, 4 and 5

  • Provides a range of appropriate courses, enabling each student to reach his/her full potential

  • Raises aspirations and maximises the achievement of all students

  • Helps students to develop personal values which enable them to show good citizenship, and provides for their personal, social, moral, cultural and spiritual development; including the active promotion of British values

  • Prepares students for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life in modern Britain

  • Encourages the skills of independence, initiative, problem solving and the ability to work within teams

  • Provides the skills and guidance necessary for them to enter the world of work

  • Offers wider enrichment opportunities for students beyond the classroom

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Enriching Lives

Our Enrichment curriculum is incredibly broad and supported where-ever needed for all so regardless of background...


At KS3 we are keen to ensure a seamless crossover from Primary and into GCSEs whereby every child is challenged daily.

Exploring Issues

Our Personal, Social, Health and Emotional Curriculum is an essential cornerstone to our everyday learning.


A key aspect of our KS4 curriculum is ensuring every student achieves a suite of qualifications that opens doors to them.

The Essentials

Reading, litearcy and vocabulary development are at the heart of all of our students' experiences.


Specialist teaching means our sixth formers become equipped with the skills and knowledge they need to enter their chosen career path...

Ormiston Rivers Academy Curriculum Provision

At Ormiston Rivers our curriculum vision is:  “Deepening Learning, Raising Aspiration”.  This is intrinsically tied to the curriculum vision of our academy sponsor:  “Teach, Develop, Change”. 

As part of the OAT “teach” strategy, we offer a broad and balanced, fully comprehensive curriculum, to suit the needs of all learners in our local community from year 7 through to year 13.  We recognise the value of the national curriculum and, as such, our curriculum offer is aligned with it and further enhanced by our commitment to the creative arts.  We ensure that our offer is tailored to students of all abilities through our curriculum provision as well as our “Pupil Premium Promise” and our “Elite Scholars Programme”.  We are proud of the facilities in our academy, which enhance the learning of our students on a daily basis, notably our motor vehicles suite, our performing arts spaces and our well-equipped science labs.  All of this reinforces our commitment to “deepening learning” through our broad set of skills and knowledge, which have been carefully selected and sequenced in each department area.

As part of the OAT “develop and change” strategy, our curriculum aims to develop aspiration, independence and resilience in our learners, whilst instilling a sense of respect as part of a moral compass. We highlight the importance of British Values in both the formal taught curriculum, the formal learning with mentors and achievement directors and the informal learning that takes place in our enrichment programmes. We take pride in our well-being provision within the school, promoting the importance of good mental health and appropriate support for those who face mental health challenges. We promote the importance of social justice and social action through our work with the #makehappen and #iwill campaigns. Our high profile careers Selecting and defining the set of knowledge and skills that we value in our curriclum Planning for the development of the social and emotional needs of our learners Meeting the needs of all to support and prepare them for their journey into the working world Deepening Learning Raising Aspiration Teach Develop Change programme supports students in accessing the valuable information that they need in order to make decisions about their future. These aspects of our curriculum provision enforce our commitment to “Raising Aspiration”

Ormiston Rivers Academy occupies a unique geographical location, being both coastal and rural. As a result of this we place enormous value on the importance of enrichment in the lives of our students.  We offer a range of extra-curricular provision to support the development of cultural capital in the delivery of our curriculum.  This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Sports

  • Performing Arts

  • Debating

  • STEM activities and competitions

  • Rotary young chef competitions

  • Chess

  • Pride

  • Brilliant Club

  • A wide variety of national and international trips and visits

  • External speakers

We are a truly inclusive community comprehensive school and we value the input that our local community provide in our curriculum provision.  We have been ranked consistently over the last number of years as one of the highest performing schools in the county and are heavily oversubscribed.  We are supported in various curricular areas by our local rotary club, our local town council, our religious community and local professionals.  Our staff care deeply about the future prospects of our students, which is reflected in both the care and compassion we provide to students as well as the outstanding outcomes our students leave with as a result of a bespoke and personalised curriculum offer which equally values the academic and vocational pathways, to cater for the needs of all of the students from our local community.



At Ormiston Rivers Academy, we aim to engender a lifelong love of reading and ensure that our students value the joys of both the written and spoken word. In doing so, we will both empower students to succeed in their English qualifications whilst also equipping them with the tools (language, curiosity, empathy and creativity) required to make positive contributions to society.

We believe that the ability to read fluently is an inalienable right and aim to ensure that all students have access to the full curriculum through reading interventions (E.g. one to one, guided reading).

Through the use of a well-resourced Library and dedicated Librarian, reading programmes (Accelerated Reader and MyOn), Register and Read, DEAR time, Author visits and the celebration of events like World Book Day, we aim to inspire a love of literature and appreciation for the power and beauty of the English language.


We believe that the curriculum we offer our students will support them in following any career path they chose when they have left us.  Below is a series of videos of our alumni describing their learning journey with us and where it has taken them.

Diversity in our Curriculum

The British Council Guidelines for Inclusion and Diversity (2010), outlines a range of expectations that we should adopt as an Academy. Amongst them, the following are relevant to our curriculum designs:

“In the school environment, both pupils and staff should learn to appreciate the differences between religions, cultures and sexual orientation in the school community, even if one’s views clash with others’ beliefs.”


“Within the school curriculum, students should be given opportunities to learn about cultural diversity.”


“Schools should educate the whole person; to develop them academically, emotionally physically and morally to achieve their potential.”


“Schools should provide new ways of teaching and learning to help every young person learn well, for example having courses taught by specialist practitioners in intercultural learning to enable the students to benefit from their expertise and passion.”


“Schools should give possibilities to a wider range of cultures and religions, including more diverse language learning.”


As part of our curriculum intent, we aim to ensure students have a broad exposure to today’s multi-cultural Britain and the World, especially in today’s Post-Brexit climate. We want to identify a common thread of diversity through our curriculum plans. We aim to enable pupils to understand the plurality of groups in Britain, including students from Welsh, Scottish and Northern-Irish backgrounds (white ethnicity), to understand that race is not defined as those from distant lands. We believe in the value of teaching students the similarities and differences between people of different races and ethnicities.

In our schemes overviews (soon to be published on our website), you will note that some of our topics are coloured in purple with a “Diversity” symbol next to them.


This indicates that teachers plan to highlight some interesting points about diversity in the teaching of this topic. This may be featuring the work of an important professional in that area who may be from an ethnic minority, or the work of a female in what would historically have been a male dominated industry. It could also be a topic which explores the cultural differences between our own society and others. We believe this is hugely important in our curriculum.

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Ormiston Rivers Academy
Southminster Road
Essex CM0 8QB