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As students join the school at different times, all individuals will be asked to complete a baseline assessment when they start, wherever that falls in the school year.  During the first few lessons in mathematics, students will be encouraged to complete an initial assessment either in the form of a GCSE exam paper (generally year 10 and 11 students) or, an Access Mathematics Test or SATs paper (KS1 or KS2 as appropriate) which are mostly used with those who are not yet in KS4 or are finding GCSE study difficult.


From this assessment, a current GCSE grade or a 'maths age' is calculated and this informs the class teacher of areas of improvement.  The class teacher will set and review targets in line with the initial assessment and current teacher assessment, as well as compile a student report every 6 weeks for each individual and will use this as an ongoing assessment tool.



As a school we encourage students who are on role at The Rubicon Centre to sit the appropriate tier iGCSE mathematics exam in the January of their final year and then re-sit the paper in the summer series.  Those that score a good grade on the foundation paper in the January series will be expected to sit the higher paper in the summer term.  Those that have room for improvement will be able to sit the same paper again in order to increase their grade.  Please speak with the class teacher if you have any questions relating to the iGCSE.


Students on a dual-role, will normally sit exams in-line with their home school.  This may mean that during the summer series they will sit a different exam paper to their Rubicon peers as they are essentially from different schools.  Students will be advised of their exam boards and timetables in advance of the summer.


Not all students are ready for GCSE qualifications by the end of year 11.  These students are able to work towards the Entry Level Certificate in Mathematics.  This is graded from Entry Level 1 to Entry Level 3, with Entry Level 3 being the highest possible grade.  This qualification is simpler than GCSE and supports students in gaining essential numeracy skills which will aid them in their future studies, personal lives and in their chosen field of employment.  It is possible that students may complete the learning required for this assessment before the end of year 11, and then continue to sit the GCSE/iGCSE paper.  These Entry Level qualifications are nationally recognised certificates which reflect an individual's understanding of mathematics and basic numeracy. Areas of study include: time, money management and measures amongst others. To gain the qualification, students are required to gain the appropriate number of marks across one, eight-part assessment, which can occur at any time during the school year. This allows the flexibility for the assessment to be resat if necessary.



The mathematics department is well equipped with teaching and learning resources. Lessons take place in well appointed teaching rooms which are bright and welcoming. Teachers have access to computers, laptops, projectors and interactive whiteboards which aid in delivering interesting and engaging lessons.  Students are expected to participate in learning appropriate for their own abilities and stretch themselves in applying numeracy skills in lessons and throughout the wider curriculum.


The Scheme of Learning is designed to suit the needs of the National Curriculum at KS3 and KS4 and is supported in the use of the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics guidelines on the 6 mathematical mastery themes:


  1. The structure of the number system
  2. Operating on number
  3. Multiplicative reasoning
  4. Sequences and graphs
  5. Statistics and probability
  6. Geometry


All students study a flexible curriculum which is designed around the needs of the students in the class. The ethos of mathematics for those on placements at the school, is to support students by closing the gap in the students' understanding of basic numeracy.


Interventions are available for those in need of extra support in specific areas.  These are offered in class as part of the lesson design as well as in 1-1 interventions.  


Lessons are differentiated to meet the needs of individual students, and small class sizes help to support students in reaching their full potential.


In our commitment to supporting students at local schools, we work hard to ensure students are able to sit examinations in line with their home school.  We work to liaise with each school to offer the best chances of maximum achievement.


Full time students will generally follow the Schemes of Learning below with extra support or additional sessions added to help students with gaps in learning or understanding at KS1 and KS2.


If you are a teacher or guardian of a child who attends The Rubicon Centre, and wish to discuss their individual curriculum or assessment or qualifications, please contact Anne Oates ( or Izzy Grant (



Careers Education


Links to careers education and the transferable skills covered in the mathematics curriculum can be found in the careers documentation.


As a core subject maths is integral in day-to-day life.  Essential maths skills are required to plan our calendars and conduct our shopping.  As such many roles require a level of maths comprehension.  Changes in the labour market suggest that a competent understanding of maths is more important than ever before.  Recent changes to the types of jobs available include:

  • Growth in technology usage and changes in the scope of technical applications in different job sectors
  • 'Green' issues where measures are being taken to better care for our environment, locally and globally.
  • Basic skills of those in the job market are increasing on the whole.
  • Individuals needing to work for longer due to changes in life expectancy and pensionable age.