“Information technology and business are becoming inextricably interwoven. I don’t think anybody can talk meaningfully about one without the talking about the other.”

– Bill Gates


Why do we teach this? Why do we teach it in the way we do?

At the Horizon School we believe that all students are part of the local, national and global communities. In the digital age it is imperative that our students are digitally literate and are able to compete with their peers in the world of work. We aim to provide an environment where ICT is integrated into all aspects of the school in a way which actively supports and promotes motivated life-long learners, helping all to make links to the wider world whilst preparing everyone for the challenge of a rapidly developing and changing technological environment.

The study of ICT at the Horizon School will empower students to become active members of society, giving them the tools and the skills to navigate not only the world of work but also their worlds outside work.

We strive to ensure that our students are learn about a diverse range of ICT topic, from the nature of computer systems, programming and Microsoft packages to creative topics such as animation, web design and digital graphics. This curriculum is fun, engaging and has a direct link to many digital careers. Individual students will be taught at their level of ability and targeted in specific ways that allow them to access the qualification at the level suitable to their needs.



What do we teach? What does this look like? Why is it sequenced in this way?

For many students at The Horizon School, limitations in their literacy & numeracy skills has an overwhelming impact on their ability to access a mainstream curriculum.  We, therefore, place great emphasis on these in all subject areas with targeted intervention being applied to some students.  With regards to ICT a great emphasis shall be placed on improving reading skills to ensure that students can follow instructions and logical processes. Units will be taught with booklets being used wherever possible so that instructions are clear. Students will be received personalised guides for each unit. There will also be work taking place in conjunction with the Photography and Music departments to reinforce both subjects where they overlap.


Regular assessment throughout the year informs staff and students of progress and attainment. Students are increasingly aware of strengths and weaknesses, and are able to address these in class and at home using their personalised guides.


Year 11’s at The Horizon School follow a condensed curriculum and are placed on a Pathway either Support (Grade 1-3), Core (Grade 4-5) or Higher (Grade 6+).  This curriculum is personalised based on assessments and gaps in learning. 



What will this look like? By the time students leave our school they will:

At the end of Key Stage 4 we aim for all students to have achieve a minimum expected grade and encourage students to exceed this through mastering the content at their allocated tier. 


Our KS3 ICT Curriculum aims to ensure students:

  • understand the hardware and software components that make up computer systems, and how they communicate with one another and with other systems
  • undertake creative projects that involve selecting, using, and combining multiple applications, preferably across a range of devices, to achieve challenging goals, including collecting and analysing data and meeting the needs of known users
  • create, re-use, revise and re-purpose digital artefacts for a given audience, with attention to trustworthiness, design and usability
  • understand a range of ways to use technology safely, respectfully, responsibly and securely, including protecting their online identity and privacy; recognise inappropriate content, contact and conduct and know how to report concerns


Our KS4 Imedia Curriculum aims to ensure that students:

  • develop their capability, creativity and knowledge in digital media and information technology
  • develop and apply their analytic, problem-solving, design, and computational thinking skills
  • understand how changes in technology affect safety, including new ways to protect their online privacy and identity, and how to identify and report a range of concerns.
  • Create professional media related products such as websites and digital graphics
  • Establish and develop digital planning skills.


In order for this to happen, the ICT leader (Mr O’Neill) and the SLT take responsibility for the monitoring of the ICT curriculum and the standards achieved by the students.


Data is collected half termly and reported to the SLT. All teachers contribute to a termly Pupil Progress meeting where the data is analysed and targets are made by highlighting ‘stuck’ pupils and focusing on next steps.

The ICT lead will monitor for appropriate pitch and progression at least once every half term.

This monitoring takes the form of:

  1. Lesson observations and feedback
  2. Learning walks and student voice conversations
  3. Planning scrutiny followed by support where necessary
  4. Books scans on a frequent basis
  5. Termly data analysis

Career Opportunities

ICT and specifically I media are directly related to a diverse range of careers. For example:

  • Web developer
  • Games designer
  • Graphic design
  • Computer programmer
  • Systems analyst
  • Data analyst

However, ICT and digital literacy play an essential part in all careers and students will be directed to specific direct and indirect careers at the start of every lesson.

Being technological savvy is a key skill in all aspects of life. This gives students a greater chance of employment and a wider range of opportunities.

Defining spiritual, moral, social, cultural development within Science


With the use of creative writing, pupils are given the opportunity to use their imagination. Pupils are set pieces of work in which they must reflect on experiences from their past. Work within English gives pupils the ability to reflect on their own beliefs, religious or otherwise, that inform their perspective on life and their interest in, and respect for, other people’s faiths, feelings and values. Pupils are given the opportunities to explore different faiths and cultural diversity.

 Using group discussion and the effective use of questioning and answering, pupils are given the ability to recognise the difference between right and wrong, whilst understanding the consequences of their behaviour and actions. Pupils are taught to respect, understand and appreciate the viewpoints of others.

Pupils are taught about the importance of decision making and how to weigh up the positives and negatives of a decision. The aim is to develop pupils’ skills allowing them to demonstrate skills and attitudes of how they can participate fully in, and contribute positively to, life in modern Britain.

Positive Feedback

The staff at The Horizon School, Hartlepool take time to listen and build relationships with all the students.

Annais (Student)

I have a better relationship with the teachers at The Horizon School, Hartlepool. They listen to me and help me with my work

Sean (Student)

Teachers have high aspirations for pupils and their next steps in life...Pupils are well prepared to leave school after Year 11.

OFSTED Inspectors