Useful Links

Useful Links

GSO Test

Raising the achievement of All


Welcome to the Year 9 Guided Options page of our website. This page contains all the information you will need to understand our core curriculum, option choices available and student pathways we offer.

The curriculum at Icknield High School encompasses every aspect of a young person’s learning; everything we do is underpinned by our overriding philosophy of ‘Raising the Achievement of All’. In order to give students a broad and balanced experience, we continue to offer a wide range of subjects at key stage 4.  

At key stage 4 the curriculum builds upon the foundation work undertaken at key stage 3. We do this by ensuring that students develop a deeper and more insightful understanding of the core knowledge underpinning their subjects. Whilst academic rigour is at the heart of our curriculum, we also recognise the importance of students continuing to access the wider curriculum beyond the restraints of the GCSE specifications. There continues to be a strong focus on Literacy, Reading and Mathematics for students of all abilities at key stage 4.

We support the government’s ambitious of approximately 75% of students pursue the full suite of English Baccalaureate (EBacc) subjects. These subjects include English, Maths, Science, History/Geography, and a Language, all up to GCSE standard. Notably, this combination of subjects is prevalent among the highest-performing schools in Bedfordshire.

At our school, we follow a “guided pathways” system for Key Stage 4. Our dedicated staff carefully consider each students’ historical assessment outcomes and attitude toward learning. Based on this assessment, we guide them onto an appropriate educational pathway.

The GCSE pathways available are as follows and the hours allocated for each option subject over a two-week period are listed: 

Options Model

EBacc Pathway

Non-EBacc Pathway

Support Pathway

Core Curriculum

English Language and Literature, Maths, Triple or Combined Science, PE and PSHE.

Option 1 – 4 hours

Visual Art choice

Option 2 – 6 hours

French, German or Spanish

History, Geography, French, German or Spanish

Option 3 – 6 hours

History or Geography

Open choice*

Option 4 – 6 hours

Open choice*

Additional Support

 *Open choice offered: Business, Computer Science, Design Technology, Ethics and Philosophy, Food Preparation & Nutrition, French, Geography, German, Cambridge National Health & Social Care, History, Music, Spanish, Statistics and Physical Education. 

More information about each course can be found in our Options booklet. Please click on this link.