The Religious Studies department is part of the Humanities faculty and delivers learning in Religious Education to all students in Years 7, 8 and 9. All students can choose to follow the full course GCSE qualification in Religious Studies in Years 10 and 11. The department is headed by a specialist teacher in Religious Education and supported by non-specialist teaching staff delivering the curriculum at Key Stage 3.
Religious Studies lessons make a major contribution to the whole school promotion of British Values and the Spiritual, Moral, Cultural and Social development of students across both Key Stages.
In Years 7 and 8, pupils are challenged to consider the possible answers to ultimate questions and are encouraged to develop the skill of empathy; seeing things from more than one point of view. Students learn about the major world religions and also from the various faith traditions, making sense and relevance to their own lives, regardless of whatever background they may come from.
In Year 9, students build on this learning and follow a curriculum that asks them to respond to moral issues in the world. These include racism, the climate emergency, medical issues, crime and war and peace. These issues are examined from religious and non-religious perspectives.
The Religious Studies department continues to develop links with the various faith communities, offering all students the chance to visit places and meet people from a variety of traditions.
Topics Covered this Academic Year
|Autumn Term||Spring Term||Summer Term|
World Religion Foundation Unit
Themes in RE: Relationships/Power
Believing in God — does God exist? Religious upbringing and experience, the problem of evil.
Judaism — from the covenant to the state of Israel.
Hinduism — beliefs and practices, including a study of the life of Mohandas Gandhi.
Buddhism — the life of the Buddha, Buddhist beliefs, the Sangha.
Islam — Islamic beliefs and living the Muslim Life
Introduction to Sikhism.
In Year 9 students explore a range of issues affecting the world today in order to apply and build upon their prior learning from the key religions in Years 7 and 8. In the Autumn term they consider religious attitudes to racism as well as human rights and responsibilities. In the Spring term they consider religious attitudes to medical issues and the environment. In the summer term religious attitudes to justice as well as peace and conflict are explored.
In Year 10 students are encouraged to think in greater depth about the links between religion and politics, media and the deeper purpose to religion itself.
Key Stage 4
In Years 10 and 11, the Religious Studies department offers all students the option of following the full course GCSE in Religious Studies. This is a very engaging course that has been extremely successful in recent years, topping the league tables for Somerset schools.
Course title: Edexcel Specification B 'Beliefs in Action'
Area of Study 1 — Religion and Ethics through Christianity
Area of Study 2 — Religion, Peace and Conflict through Islam
Last Updated: October 2022