At Springwater School, we believe each pupil is entitled to a curriculum that is personalised and appropriate for them. All our children and young people have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) and require modified approaches to achieve their aspirations and goals. Our curriculum reflects the main EHCP areas and addresses pupils' individual needs and barriers to learning so that each pupil can develop to reach their true potential.  
Curriculum Pathways

Across the school, there are three curriculum pathways: pre-formal, semi-formal and formal. The pathways offer three different progression routes for pupils and ensure they access teaching and learning at the most appropriate level.

  • The pre-formal curriculum pathway is for pupils who have profound and multiple learning difficulties and disabilities. They require a very special approach to learning and high levels of adult support for their physical needs and personal care. The curriculum focuses on developing early skills in seven key areas of learning and development.
  • The semi-formal pathway is for pupils with severe learning difficulties and disabilities. The curriculum continues to focus on developing understanding and skills in the seven areas of learning and development.  
  • The formal pathway is for pupils with learning difficulties and disabilities who are working at the level of National Curriculum attainment targets. Pupils receive an adaptation of the National Curriculum focused on developing knowledge, understanding and skills that are relevant and meaningful.

Pupils may move from one pathway to another according to their needs. In addition, pupils may straddle two pathways for some or all of their time at school, particularly if they have an uneven learning profile. Teachers in each pathway recognise the importance of repetition and over-learning to allow pupils to embed and generalise what they learn.


Early Years Foundation Stage / Primary / Secondary

In our EYFS, primary and secondary departments, we use the EYFS Framework to guide our delivery of the curriculum in seven key areas of learning and development. These seven areas reflect early childhood development and link to the main EHCP areas, as illustrated below:


ehcp to 7 areas

Teaching and learning for pre-formal and semi-formal pupils focuses on these seven areas. Gaining understanding and skills in these areas also provides the foundations necessary for pupils to progress to subject-specific study, if and when they are ready to do so. The following image illustrates how the seven areas of learning and development link to subject areas:  


7 areas to subjects

Pupils who progress to subject-specific study are described as engaging in formal learning. Pupils engaged in formal learning receive an adaptation of the National Curriculum with a focus on developing skills that are relevant and meaningful. Where a pupil is working within the National Curriculum attainment targets for one or two specific subjects, they will access a formal approach for those subjects and a semi-formal approach for the other areas of learning and development.


Key Stage 4

When pupils reach Key Stage 4 (KS4), in addition to the regular secondary curriculum, they are also enrolled on the ASDAN Towards Independence programme of study. Towards Independence provides a framework of activities to develop and accredit personal, social, work-related and independent living skills. Units of study are selected based on pupil interest and developmental stage. 

For further information, please see the following link:


Springwater 6th Form

In 6th Form, the curriculum continues to be structured around the main EHCP areas, with an increasing emphasis on developing students' independence skills and preparing them for adulthood. The image below illustrates how the activities on offer for post-16 students link to the main EHCP areas: 


ehcp to 6th form activities


Students in 6th Form are enrolled on accredited courses based on one of four pathways. The following image describes the aims of the curriculum in 6th Form and outlines the four pathways: 


sixth form curriculum aims


For further information about accredited courses in 6th Form, please see the following links:



 docxWhole school dates for SMSC and collective worship

Recovery Curriculum September 2020

When we returned to school in September 2020, we adapted our curriculum offer to concentrate on all pupils returning to school in a positive and calm way. Please see the link below which descibes our Recovery Curriculum. The Recovery Curriculum was in place to support pupils for the first half of the autumn term. 

pdfRecovery Curriculum September 2020


If you require any further information on the EYFS, primary or secondary curricula, please contact school on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 01423 883214 and ask to speak to Andrew Sudron (Deputy Headteacher and Curriculum Lead). If you require any further information on the 6th Form curriculum, please ask to speak to Andrew Mullane (Head of Department).

Find Us

Springwater School
High Street

About Us

Springwater is a vibrant and progressive day school catering for students ranging from two to nineteen years. Offering places to students who may have profound and multiple, severe or physical difficulties, the majority of our current students have co-existing or multiple needs. We also cater for students with autistic spectrum condition and elements of challenging behaviour.