All of our pupils follow a common curriculum in S1 and in S2. In the course of these two years, pupils take mathematics and english, physics, chemistry, biology, latin, one modern language chosen from french, german or spanish, technology, RMPS, geography, history and modern studies, business, economics, art, drama, ICT, music, PE and games.
Here pupils are exposed to the expertise of specialist subject teachers who nurture our pupils as they learn the many different ways in which the world can be decoded. Pupils acquire the skills, the knowledge and the understanding that will be the sound foundation as they flourish through the senior phase of their education. As they prepare for their first external examinations at the end of S4 pupils specialise in 7 or 8 subjects rich in the balance of science, language, mathematics, arts and humanities that develop their particular strengths and interests. Throughout they are carefully guided in their choices by a number of specialist pastoral, career development and senior staff.
While in the majority of cases pupils will be entered in National 5 examinations at the end of S4, some pupils in some subjects will ‘by pass’ the examination in S4 to focus their attention early on the more challenging content of Higher.
Traditionally S5 has been a crucial year for Scottish School children as Higher examinations have a special significance for entry to Scottish Universities and beyond.
Our pupils are ambitious in embracing this challenge and we support them in the flexibility with which the timetable matches their ambition. From a choice of around 23 subjects, the majority of pupils will take 5 Highers in S5, but the timetable is constructed so that 6 Highers can be taken very successfully in numbers not possible in other schools.
Hutchesons’ often have often had the highest number of exam entries at Higher in S5 of any school in Scotland, and our results are all the more outstanding for that fact.
S6 has become an increasingly vital part of the preparation of Hutchesonians for life beyond school. We make sure that the Curriculum is as flexible as possible so that the last pieces are put in place in terms of breadth and depth for every individual child.
The structure of our curriculum and timetable allows several additional Higher choices on top of those available in S5 – psychology, PE, photography and accounting for example are new choices available to our sixth years while short courses in sports leadership, drama, Italian and philosophy are always popular. However, for most pupils in Sixth Year, their academic challenge will involve one, two, three or four Advanced Highers, while many also choose to challenge themselves in further rigorous independent research, in the form our bespoke Hutchesons’ Independent Research Paper.