• Key Dates

    Please click here to see our key dates for 2021-22. Please note this is a live document and subject to change.

    School Life


    English Faculty

    • Mrs E Cannon – Head of Faculty
    • Ms H McKay - 2nd in Faculty
    • Miss R Dell - Head of Key Stage 3 English
    • Miss M Battle - Teacher of English
    • Mrs M Edmund  - Teacher of English
    • Miss K Henson  - Teacher of English
    • Mrs S Holbrook  - Teacher of English
    • Miss J McLoughlin  - Teacher of English
    • Mrs E White  - Teacher of English
    • Miss B Mathias - Teacher of English

    Click here to view the English Learning Journey

    Key Stage 3 English

    Key Stage 3 at Bishop Ramsey covers Years 7-9. Students begin the year with a short transition period which will link with what they will have covered in their primary schools (Hillingdon schools only).

    In Year 7, pupils will consolidate and develop the skills they have been taught in primary schools as they are introduced to new texts and areas of study.

    In Years 7- 9, students will study at least one class novel together, then range more widely across genres and time periods, building their ability to infer information and analyse authors’ methods, then applying similar strategies to their own writing. Students will also study at least one Shakespeare play, as well as a range of poetry. Presentations, discussions and class debates are used to further students’ ability to express their ideas and reason their opinions. In KS3, pupils will also have some lessons in the school library to embed independent reading; they will be expected to continue good practice from primary school by reading weekly.

    Please click here for a KS3 recommended reading list.

    Further information from Ms R Dell - Head of Key Stage 3 English - rdell@bishopramsey.school 


    Key Stage 4 English

    We follow the AQA GCSE syllabus and all the pupils will study both English Language and Literature.

    For English Language, students study both fiction and non-fiction texts. They cover a wide range of texts and extracts, ranging from the 19th century to modern day writers. This equips them to evaluate both classics and contemporary writers, encouraging them to explore reading beyond their usual choices. In class, students explore and analyse writers’ techniques, write creative and non-fiction texts themselves, prepare presentations and participate in discussions. We employ ICT and e-learning regularly in English, especially for homework and Kerboodle is available for all students to use at home, as well as the reading comprehension learning tool CommonLit.

    For English Literature, students study the ‘Power & Conflict’ theme in the AQA poetry Anthology, Macbeth, by Shakespeare and a modern drama, An Inspector Calls, by J. B. Priestly. They will also study A Christmas Carol, a novel by Charles Dickens.

    The two elements of Language and Literature will be taught together in alternating units of work, and students will be assessed each half term to measure progress in both skills and content.

    Further information from: Ms M Calabrese - Head of Key Stage 4 English - mcalabrese@bishopramsey.school 




    Key Stage 5 English

    At Key Stage 5, the English Department offers AQA English Literature B A-Level 7717, which is taught over two years and has three components. Students needs to attain Grade 6 in their English GCSEs to enrol.

    1. Literary Genres – Aspects of Comedy (closed book exam)

    This covers four texts through the lens of Comedy for the AS exam and A Level paper 1: Twelfth Night, by Shakespeare, Emma, by Jane Austen (Y13 only – replaced by Small Island from 2018), The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde and/or poems by John Betjeman from the AQA Anthology, Poetry: Tragedy and Comedy.

    Students write an internal progression exam at the end of year 12, with the option to complete the AS if they are not continuing with the subject.

    2. Texts and Genres – Elements of Crime Writing (open book exam)

    At A Level, students go on to study texts through the lens of Crime Fiction: Atonement, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and a collection of poetry by Browning, Crabbe and Wilde.

    3. NEA [non-exam component] – theory study and independent research writing.

    Students prepare, plan and write 2 independent research essays of 1200-1500 words, which are handed in by half term in February of Year 13.

    Students have a free choice of prose and poetry for the Non-Exam Assessed component [NEA] of the A Level award. They are required to write about an independently chosen prose and poetry text, using a theoretical perspective, such as Feminism, Marxism or Post-colonialism. The theory is taught as part of both years of the two year A-Level course and prepares students for further literature study at University as well as in critical and analytical thinking and concise writing skills.

    Further information from: Ms H Mackay - Head of Key Stage 5 English/2nd in Faculty -  hmackay@bishopramsey.school


    Extra Curricular

    In the past we have run trips to the theatre, arranged visits from the Globe Players, and had visits from poets. We have hosted the Globe Players for Years 8 and 11 and had Jack Petchey trainers in for Year 10 to develop their public speaking skills. Students from all Key Stages are encouraged to enter creative writing competitions and many have been published by the Young Writers this year.

    Regarding careers development in English, we have visiting theatre groups and are planning to have writers in to speak about their work to the students in Key Stage 3. In Key Stage 4, students undertake the Jack Petchey ‘Speakout’ challenge, during which they are trained by industry trainers to speak confidently on a subject they are passionate about. In Key Stage 5, students have the opportunity to attend various author events in Hillingdon and at Brunel University, as they arise, to get a sense of how writers go about their work and the processes involved.