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Dear Parents and Carers of Years 8 and 9

Examination Subject Planning for Years 8 and 9
At this time of year we begin to plan for the subjects learners will take for their examination courses.
We are planning that both Years 8 and 9 will begin examination courses in September 2017. This will mean Year 8 learners will have three years for their examination courses, while Year 9 will have the usual two.

Governors and I are mindful that learners will move to other schools partway through their examination courses in 2018, when the school closes. It is important that they are well placed to continue with their examination subjects in their new schools. With this in mind, we will be offering subjects that we know they will be able to continue successfully in other schools.
A number of learners have expressed the wish to join Newbridge School in 2018. At Newbridge young people have three years to undertake their examination courses. We wish to provide Cwmcarn Year 8 learners with this same opportunity so that those who do join Newbridge can adapt seamlessly to this curriculum.
For Year 8 learners who may join other schools in 2018, they will be at an advantage when they move, having had an additional examination year. For Year 9, they will simply continue with their two year course of study in whichever school they join, which is standard in all schools.

The subjects all children will study for their examination courses are:
English language
Mathematics and numeracy (the equivalent of two separate mathematics qualifications)
Science (most will take double award science, the equivalent of two GCSEs)
Welsh Language GCSE
Welsh Baccalaureate ( the equivalent of a GCSE qualification)
IT – Information Technology GCSE
These are all GCSE examination courses.

Options subjects
Learners will also have the opportunity to undertake option examination courses. This means they must choose two subjects from the list provided. This includes:

This means learners will continue with ten examination courses altogether. The compulsory GCSE examination subjects are key to the future of every young person, providing them with the skills and qualifications they need to go on to any course they choose at A level and beyond or any apprenticeship they wish to undertake. The options enable the development of interests and these also provide access to future courses at A level.
Learners also continue with the compulsory subjects of PE, PSE (personal and social education) and RE (religious education.)
Making Options Choices

Miss James, curriculum manager, will provide Years 8 and 9 with a first opportunity to consider their option subjects this half term. All learners should consider their strengths and interests when considering their two options subjects. She will look closely at these initial choices and will ensure the best overall fit for all learners. Should she have any concerns about choices she will discuss this with learners and with parents as appropriate. Mr. Robson, Pastoral Leader for Years 8 and 9, is also an important source of support and guidance for this process for both learners and parents.
Once the options process is complete for both year groups, parents and carers will be informed of the final list of examination subjects your child will undertake from September.

Should you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact Mr. Robson or Miss James.
We look forward to a successful process for your child in choosing their two options subjects.

Yours sincerely
Executive Headteacher

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