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Longcause Community Special School Learning for Life

Phase organisation

What will our pupils experience throughout their curriculum at Longcause?


‘Longcause Learning for Life’ is our key motto and therefore we aim to create a structured curriculum where we are able to recognise and celebrate the uniqueness of all of our learners, provide a breadth of experiences, fulfil their aspirations and where they will be prepared for their lives beyond school. Children are learning all the time and it is our responsibility to optimise learning opportunities throughout the entire school day.


At Longcause School we give a particular emphasis in our curriculum to the development of:

  • Social Communication Skills
  • Life Skills
  • Social, Emotional and Mental Health skills, including Sex, Relationship and Health Education.
  • Sensory and Physical Development, including PE, Swimming, Cycling, individual Therapies and Interventions.
  • Work related and Vocational Skills.
  • Reading
  • Functional literacy and numeracy skills


The aim of our curriculum is to promote:

  • A good level of literacy and numeracy and an enquiring mind which wants to learn more each day.
  • Independent young people who are confident, flexible, resilient and able to co-operate with others.
  • Imagination and creative expression through a wide range of media.
  • Conscientious young citizens in our multicultural society who are tolerant and respect others’ values.
  • Pride in achievement and a desire to succeed.
  • Links between the school, the child’s home and the community which promote aspiration and high expectations.
  • Equality of opportunity for all.
  • Recognition of even the smallest steps in progress.
  • Access to the different areas of the statutory curriculum at a time when individuals are ready for that learning- led by learning development rather than age and stage.
  • Individual physical and mental wellbeing, and emotional intelligence.
  • Promote healthy living and provide pupils with the skills to be able to make healthy and safe choices.
  • Provide real life, relevant learning contexts for pupils


It is therefore crucial that our curriculum provides clear and coherent guidelines and strategies to impact on learning and ensure that continuity and progression are promoted within the curriculum for all of our pupils and the needs of our pupils are met.


All pupils at Longcause School will access the curriculum at a level which is suitable for their age and ability. No pupil is disapplied from the Foundation Stage or Longcause Curriculum documents, Relationships, Sex and Health Education or RE, except by parental wish where this complies with our school policy. Further information on parental rights to withdraw pupils from aspects of the curriculum can be found on our LLfL page here


Key Stage 1-3:

With the introduction of the new National Curriculum 2014, we seized the opportunity to develop our own curriculum that follows the National Curriculum, whilst more fully meeting the diverse needs of our pupils. Our desire was to develop a more child centred curriculum, as although our pupils need to learn what is in the statutory curriculum, we acknowledge that our learners’ needs require a much more personalised curriculum. Over time, our curriculum has evolved and we now have developed our own curriculum documents for all core and foundation subjects. Please refer to the individual subject’s intent statements for further information on each subject. 


The curriculum documents for all of our subjects are very comprehensive and break down learning into small steps which accrue points as they are achieved by each individual pupil. Our Longcause curriculum content echoes the ground covered by the EYFS and P-Levels, through to the National Curriculum, which creates a flexible and seamless transition for our learners. Due to the individualised nature of our curriculum, all pupils follow the same curriculum pathway.


We recognise that all pupils come to our school with a different wealth of experiences and skills. At Longcause we work from the child first and they therefore drive the direction and content of their curriculum. Our curriculum enables all pupils to make progress regardless of their starting points and builds upon the Cultural Capital of each pupil. Skills within strands are arranged hierarchically, however due to the unique learning styles and needs of all of our pupils, pupils do not necessarily progress through skills in regular steps. Each pupils’ curriculum is not defined by age and therefore learners are able to move through the curriculum smoothly at any point individually for specific subjects. The organisation of our curriculum supports a flow in the learning, as learners are able to progress through a well sequenced and devised curriculum.


Priorities based on prior progress and experiences, pupils’ need, PDP targets, EHC outcomes, age, and their motivation and learning style will shape pupils’ curriculum content. This enables us to build upon the pupils’ existing knowledge, skills and understanding. At Longcause School we use a developmental perspective, therefore, where the starting point is each individual learner.


We intend to provide pupils with a breadth of learning and provide a variation in experiences, whilst ensuring that it is developmentally appropriate. All children learn best from first hand experiences and to develop a full understanding of a concept, pupils must have relevant, practical learning experiences in different contexts to be able to build their conceptual understanding. In order to provide pupils with experiences that are relevant and to identify opportunities for progression across Phases 1-3 (EYFS-KS3), each phase has schemes of work, created by subject leaders, which are the focus for learning opportunities. Such schemes are a method to deliver National Curriculum content and the planning and delivery of the them may vary between classes to ensure that it is developmentally appropriate. This ensures coverage and a breadth of rich experiences for our pupils in line with National Curriculum expectations for each Key Stage, yet is accessible for each learner. 


Please click on the specific phase pages for further information on how this is delivered at different stages throughout the school and for the relevant topic maps delivered within each phase. Subject specific coverage maps can be found on the relevant subject pages of our website.