Curriculum Intent

Ethos Statement

Building aspirational learners equipped for their future.


Woodpecker Court is committed to providing a curriculum for all students, that is aspirational, accessible, appropriate and enables achievement at all levels. The outdoor learning experience is embedded within the curriculum, throughout all subjects, where our passion is to engage through experience to ensure longevity of learning. We endeavour to increase student confidence and self-esteem through a success culture, positive experiences, working with others and gaining qualifications to enable them to be successful in both their onward destination by improving their life prospects and to be functional in the workplace. 



The curriculum is reflective of the needs of the student, the bespoke nature of Woodpecker Court enables a degree of flexibility to ensure that we remain holistic and focused upon their learning journey.  Many of our students have had a fragmented previous education, our envisaged end point for them is when they are deemed to be resilient, reflective, and responsible as well as respectful while being academically functional for both life and an onward destination.


We encourage our students to be reflective every day throughout their learning journey. We achieve this by implementing opportunities where students can reflect on their day by running a morning and afternoon briefing based under our parachute. From a teaching and learning perspective, it is essential that lesson planning includes the use of starter and plenary activities to highlight key points of learning, which will encourage students to retain knowledge. Students who embark on a learning journey at Woodpecker Court will become flexible in their working nature. The curriculum offers opportunities to learn new skills within our bespoke environment working closely with our animals, caring for the woodland, and learning how to be take responsibility for the provision and greater community.


We build resilience in all of our students, whether that be working in a range of challenging weather conditions, to being taught how to overcome mistakes with woodwork projects in our workshop or undertaking a range of sensitive PSHE qualifications. Students will be given guidance to see positives in every challenge they face. The curriculum aspires to set “there is no ceiling…seek the stairs” approach for every student and any barriers they face are seen as an opportunity to learn. The curriculum provides opportunities for students to stretch and challenge themselves, no matter how big or small the outcome. Some may be given leadership roles, others more challenging work to complete, but most importantly, students will be given the appropriate steps to succeed in building their skills, qualities and to leave Woodpecker Court with confidence as they step into the next chapter of their journey.


English – Functional Skills English
Maths – Functional Skills Maths
Enterprise – Introduction to Enterprise level 1
Occupational – Occupational Studies for the Workplace level 1
Employability – Employability Skills level 1
Personal Development – Personal Development level 1
Food – Food Level 1 or 2
Animal – Animal Care Level 1 or 2


For vocational subjects’ learners will be entered for either level 1 or level 2 according to ability in the vocation and initial English and Maths assessments. Vocational subjects will be taught in mixed ability groupings, to stretch the less able while still meeting the needs of those most able.
For English and Maths, learners will be placed into appropriate groups according to the outcome of the initial assessment and judgement against prior attainment. The appropriacy of this grouping will be continually assessed but will be formally assessed after six weeks. Prior attainment will be the driver for entry decisions, this may by informed by the baseline assessment.