Curriculum Leader:

  • Miss G Bryan

Department Staff:

  • Mrs S Poole (Assistant Curriculum Leader)
  • Mr M Griffiths
  • Miss F Canning
  • Mrs R Langford

About the subject:

In English, pupils encounter and explore a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction topics, texts and stimulus material. The development of Literacy skills is an integral part of every English lesson and, during their five years at the school, pupils develop real confidence and independence with the full range of oral, reading and writing skills, preparing them to be tested on these in the English Language GCSEs as well as preparing them for future life and the world of work. English Literature is embedded into each year’s work and this includes the study of a wide range of important and stimulating texts including contemporary and heritage novels, poetry and plays. Our pupils enjoy the variety, challenge and creativity of studying English at St Josephs and they understand that the skills they learn in English are essential, transferable skills they can apply across the curriculum and elsewhere in their lives.

KS3 overview:

In Year 7 pupils are taught in form groups before being setted in Years 8 and 9. Throughout KS3, pupils will read, study, talk and write about a wide range of fiction and non-fiction texts and genres. They will be taught to develop their creative and transactional writing skills for different purposes, audiences and effects. Pupils are assessed through written and oral tasks at the end of each unit of work as well as through reading tests, spelling, punctuation and grammar tests and formal exam papers during the whole school exam weeks. Units of work all support the development of pupils’ Literacy skills in line with the Literacy and Numeracy Framework for Wales.

KS4 overview:

Pupils are taught in sets throughout Years 10 and 11. Nearly all pupils will study for and obtain the two separate GCSEs in English Language and English Literature via the WJEC exam board. Year 10 work will develop pupils’ skills in the three strands of English Language: Speaking and Listening, Reading and Writing in preparation for the GCSE assessments and final exams which come in Year 11. Within the English Literature course, pupils will study three set texts in depth as well as develop their ability to interpret and compare poems. For the Controlled Assessment unit of English Literature, pupils will study and write about a Shakespeare play and a range of poetry.


At Key Stage 3, pupils are tested each term on their skills via a class test. Each year, they take the Wales National Reading Test and a Writing Exam. At Key Stage 4, pupils sit mock exams in English Language and English Literature in Year 10 and the first term of Year 11. There are two final examinations for GCSE English Language and two for GCSE English Literature and these are sat in the summer of Year 11.