Year 9 GCSE Guided Curriculum Choices 2021


You can fin the Curriculum Guide for Year 9 options here.

During March of Year 9, students will be required to choose their option subjects for GCSE.  We want to give our students opportunities to succeed in line with their academic targets, prior attainment and progress, and future aspirations.  As such, we make guide students in their options by considering:

  • Attainment grades and target grades
  • Attitude towards learning
  • Context within departmental areas – for example, those who play a musical instrument outside of school

The vast majority of students continue to study a language (either Mandarin or Spanish). This, alongside a humanity (History or Geography), will make students eligible for the English Baccalaureate. There is a Department for Education booklet for parents about the Ebacc here. This year we are introducing Computer Science which is also an Ebacc subject. However, it counts as a science so it cannot replace a language or a humanity. 

All students study Religion and Philosophy as one of their "options". We are a Church of England School and this is crucial to our curriculum offer. More details about the statement of entitlement for Church of England Schools can be found here.

There will be a virtual meeting for students and parents on Tuesday March 16th with opportunities to ask questions. Following this, parents can contact teachers for support or more information by emailing

Students can then choose from the list one other option subject. Subjects with * next to them have a non-examined assessment element (NEA or coursework). NEAs are very demanding and therefore we only allow students to take one of these subjects.

To help with the decisions, our staff have made short videos for families to watch. You can click on the links to find the videos. 

Geography - Ebacc
History - Ebacc
Mandarin - Ebacc
Spanish - Ebacc


Computer Science - Ebacc (counts as an additional science so will not replace the need to take a Humanity and a Language)






Is it possible to do both Geography and History?

Yes, this is possible for the more able students. Please select it on the form if it comes up as an option for you. If at the end of the year after the exams we are concerned that it will be too much for you, we will make sure that you have your reserve option instead.

Is it possible to do both Spanish and Mandarin? What about other languages?

It is highly unlikely that students will be able to study both Spanish and Mandarin. This has only been possible for students who are native speakers of one whilst studying the other at Becket Keys. Each year we have students sit exams in other languages that they study outside of school. We are happy to support this. However, we only teach Spanish and Mandarin. If you want your child to sit another language email us today on  

Can students study an extra GCSE outside of school?

Although students can study extra subjects outside of school, this is not something we recommend as their attention will inevitably be diverted, to some extent, away from their school studies. However, in circumstances where a second language is spoken at home, we do encourage students to sit a GCSE in this subject, this does not often take a significant amount of time to prepare for.

Art* - non-Ebacc

Business Studies - non-Ebacc

Drama* - non-Ebacc

DT* - non-Ebacc

Food* - non-Ebacc

Hospitality & Catering - non-Ebacc

Music* - non-Ebacc

PE* - non-Ebacc

Textiles* - non-Ebacc



When are final decisions made?

At the end of Year 9, students will sit exams. These will guide us in making final decsions about which options they will take. 

How can I speak to someone about options?

The first port of call is your son/daughter's tutor. You can also speak to Head of Year 9 or Mrs Trebess (Deputy Head in charge of Curriculum). You can do this easily by using the forms here or using the email address:

How will my options affect what I can do at Sixth Form?

You should definitely take a look at our Sixth Form Course Guide here. It will help you to see the potential impact of decisions that you make now on what you might be able to do in the future. If you are concerned about this, please email us so we can talk to you about it:

I missed the MS Teams Live Event. Was there a recording made?

Yes - you can find it here