The RS/Philosophy and Ethics classrooms are found mainly within the WS Block. RS is studied by all students during KS3 and then Philosophy and Ethics is part of the core curriculum at KS4 for all students, with mixed ability grouping used in all year groups. Students can elect to study Philosophy and Ethics as a post-16 course.
RS provokes challenging questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human. It develops pupils’ knowledge and understanding of Christianity, other principal religions, other religious traditions, and other world views that offer answers to these challenging questions. It offers opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development. It enhances pupils’ awareness and understanding of religions and beliefs, teachings, practices and forms of expression, as well as of the influence of religion on individuals, families, communities and cultures.
RS encourages pupils to learn from different religions, beliefs, values and traditions, while exploring their own beliefs and questions of meaning. It challenges pupils to reflect on, consider, analyse, interpret and evaluate issues of truth, belief, faith and ethics and to communicate their responses.
RS encourages pupils to develop their sense of identity and belonging. It enables them to flourish individually within their communities and as citizens in a diverse society and global community. RS has an important role in preparing pupils for adult life, employment and lifelong learning.
It enables pupils to develop respect for and sensitivity to others, in particular those whose faiths and beliefs are different from their own.
It promotes discernment and enables pupils to combat prejudice.
Learning and undertaking activities in RS contribute to achievement of the curriculum aims for all young people to become:
Lessons allow students to investigate a range of contemporary issues, question them and construct answers to difficult questions. Students will learn to approach these issues in a mature and open-minded way, respecting the variety of views that they encounter and work with others to explore them fully. Students will use reasoned argument to express points of view, without pre-conceived ideas clouding their thoughts.
Students follow the AQA exam board’s course (601/8401/2) which has two modules that covers:
Component 1: The Study of religions: beliefs, teachings and practices. Students will cover 2 religions: these are Christianity and Hinduism. Within these religions they will look at such diverse issues as:
Component 2: Thematic Studies. Students will then cover the following four themes:
We develop a range of skills throughout the course. Students will use an enquiring, reflective and critical approach to the work we undertake. Students engage intellectually and respond personally to the issues we address. Through this course students are also encouraged to reflect on and develop their own values.
There are two exams, one for each of the components – The Study of Religions and Thematic Studies. They are both 1 hour 45 minutes and equally weighted.