Education and learning

Teaching and learning at RNIB Three Spires Academy is creative, relevant and enjoyable, ensuring that all pupils learn and develop. Our vision is to provide exceptional education and development outcomes to meet every need so that pupils can become the best that they can be. Every pupil is valued and we want pupils to be successful, healthy, responsible and engaged learners.

We offer broad and balanced programmes, rich in experiences and creativity which are delivered through a three strand curriculum approach comprised of:

  • Early Years
  • Semi-formal
  • Formal

Early Years

Our learning environment provides access to all areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum.  There are three Prime Areas of learning: Personal, Social and Emotional Development Communication and Language Physical Development

and 4 Specific Areas: Literacy Mathematics Understanding the World Expressive Arts and Design Children learn best by doing. We create active and interactive indoor and outdoor learning environments that are responsive to their changing learning needs and engage and involve children for sustained periods. The EYFS provides a framework to enable a differentiated curriculum for our children to learn and progress at their individual stages of development.

Download our EYFS curriculum overview document (word 3,150 MB)


For pupils with a range of severe and complex learning difficulties and disabilities, progression from Early Years to subject based learning may not be appropriate or possible. In response, our semi-formal curriculum ensures that pupils continue to make progress and are equipped with skills to make the most of life chances. The 5 elements of our semi-formal curriculum are:

Communication and Interaction Skills Thinking and Problem-Solving Skills Social and Emotional Development Sensory and Physical Development Independence and Living Skills Our semi-formal curriculum is delivered primarily through a thematic based approach building on the ethos of Early Years. The curriculum is designed to be fun, engaging, practical and meaningful, matched to pupils’ learning and developmental needs.

Download our semi-formal curriculum overview  document. (PDF 103 MB)


For pupils for whom subject based learning is appropriate, we offer our formal curriculum. This is based on a differentiated National Curriculum with:

  • Core Curriculum: Mathematics, English, Personal Social and Health Education (PSHE), Physical education (PE), Computing, and Religious Education (RE).
  • Foundation Curriculum: a topic based creative curriculum that includes Art, Design and Technology, Music, Dance, Drama, Science, History, and Geography

We also focus on the supporting the development of independent living skills including personal care, eating and social interaction.

Download our Formal curriculum overview document. (PDF 767 KB)

Download overview of our Curriculum Coverage for academic year 2018-19:

  • Formal Curriculum coverage document Year C (Word 107MB)

Whichever curriculum our pupils are following, we pride ourselves in ensuring children are ready for their next steps in education.

Sex and Relationships Policy

We have a statutory duty to teach our pupils, in Year 6, a programme in sex and relationships. This is a very diverse programme and covers puberty as well as personal and independent help skills. This is delivered in a way which is appropriate to the needs of the young people and the level at which they are functioning. Please read the attached policy for more information. Please note that prior to this being delivered; we will contact you for your permission as well as to answer any questions you might have.

Download our sex and relationship policy(197 KB)


Progress and achievement

We monitor pupil progress and achievement using a range of different assessment methods appropriate to the pupils’ stage of development and curriculum. Early Years uses ‘Development Matters’ to support assessment about children’s learning and development and to monitor children’s progress. The information gathered informs final assessment against the Early Learning Goals for the EYFS Profile. Children are also taught and assessed using ‘Routes for Learning’ which provides further individualised planning for a small steps approach to progress, assessment and moderation. Our semi-formal curriculum employs Engagement Steps to assess progress in cognition and learning, communication and interaction, social, emotional and mental health, sensory and physical. Engagement Steps enables us to assess progress in thinking skills, early learning skills, communication skills and social and emotional development. Assessment and progression for pupils following the formal curriculum is monitored using P-Level Scales and National Curriculum level descriptions. We are proud of our results which show a high percentage of children exceed the expected progress for their age.

Teaching of phonics

RNIB Three Spires employs Read Write Inc as our phonics and reading programme and full details are provided in our RWI policy 2017 (Word, 361KB)

Pupil Premium allocation

Pupil Premiums are allocated to each student by the local authority. The allocation is discussed by parents/carers, local authority officers and Three Spires staff (and, where possible, the pupil him/herself) at each student’s annual review and the following Individual Education Plan (IEP) meetings. Pupil premium  allocation strategy is reviewed each September.

Pupil premium report 2018 Impact statement    (word 228KB)

Here is the school’s plan for Pupil Premium 2018-19

School performance tables

Visit our school performance tables on the Department of Education website

Pupil progress report

Download our pupil progress report 2017-18  (PDF  675 KB)

British values

The Department for Education have recently reinforced the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”

For more information on how we make sure this happens in our school please download the document below.

The promotion of fundamental British values at RNIB Three Spires Academy (Word, 20 KB)

The promotion of fundamental British values at RNIB Three Spires Academy (PDF, 205 KB)

School meals

Download our school meals menu (PDF, 2,228 KB) for autumn term 2017.


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