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Nurture Class

The Nurture Class (KS3) was opened in Spring 2020 to provide an increased level of targeted support for pupils who are working below the common levels of pupils who attend Woodlane. This streamed/cross-curricular class has an increased focus on language and communication development, social skills and independence in a smaller group setting with a higher adult:pupil ratio.

Navigate to the following areas using the topic buttons below to find out more:

Intent – What is Woodlane aiming to achieve through its Nurture Class curriculum?

  • To provide an outstanding education, which is personalised to the specific learning needs of each pupil in Nurture Class.
  • To provide a calm, learning focused environment, which is safe, caring and nurturing, in a small group with a high adult child ratio.
  • To provide a holistic education, which incorporates guidance and strategies from support agency partnerships e.g. speech and language therapists, occupational therapists etc.
  • To increase resilience and independence and develop pupils’ ability to self-regulate.
  • To ensure Woodlane values are at the heart of learning.
  • To develop pupils’ essential life skills, developing their knowledge and the ‘cultural capital’ they need to succeed in life (personal development).
  • To promote physical and emotional well-being.
  • To prepare pupils for the next stage of their education.
  • To ensure all pupils leave Woodlane with outcomes that reflect the best of their ability.

Implementation – How is the Nurture Class curriculum delivered?

Curriculum Delivery

  • Pupils have full access to a broad and balanced curriculum which is differentiated to meet pupils’ learning needs and styles. The Nurture Class curriculum is designed to be challenging and appropriate to each pupil’s stage of development.
  • In the Nurture Class, pupils are taught the same subjects as other classes at Woodlane: literacy, maths, science, art, PCSHE, food technology, geography, history, Spanish, PE, RE and computing.  These subjects are taught through 25+ hours contact time a week.
  • Pupils are taught these subjects under a half-termly theme or ‘topic’, allowing the pupils to generalise and draw links more easily between subjects.  Most of the subjects are taught by one experienced Nurture Class teacher.
  • A combination of phonics teaching and whole-word teaching is used to teach reading and writing in the Nurture Class, meaning that pupils can build upon their individual strengths to make progress in their literacy skills. 
  • The Nurture Class has close links with support agency partnerships, e.g. speech and language therapists and occupational therapists, meaning that opportunities to meet individual language and OT targets can be built into the curriculum.  Sessions explicitly covering pupils’ SaLT and OT targets are also built into the Nurture Class timetable.
  • The Nurture Class curriculum is designed to build and expand on previous skills and subject knowledge.  The KS3 Nurture Class curriculum runs on a 3-year cycle, as most pupils will spend 3 years in the KS3 Nurture Class, in year 7, 8 and 9.  The curriculum also plans for lots of opportunities for repetition in order to fully embed knowledge, increasing the chance of information recall.
  • The Zones of Regulation are used to support pupils to regulate their behaviour, thus removing barriers to learning and ensuring pupils can succeed.
  • The Nurture Class pupils are fully included in the wider life of the school, taking part in regular whole school theme days throughout the academic year, and are able to attend additional extra-curricular activities at lunchtime and after school.  Each year, a member of the Nurture Class is voted to be a member of School Council.

Teaching and Learning

  • The curriculum is differentiated broadly into three levels of challenge: ‘all’, ‘most’ and ‘some’.  Further differentiation and personalisation is implemented when required.
  • Homework is provided on the online platform ‘Firefly’ and is differentiated as above to provide the appropriate level of challenge. 
  • Written communication between Nurture Class staff and parents/carers is provided through a daily ‘report’.  The report contains symbols in order to support pupils to discuss their day’s learning with their parent/carer.
  • We offer various parent-pupil workshops throughout the year to enable parents to best support their child and work in partnership with the school.
  • Nurture Class homework is provided on a standardised format and is differentiated to provide the appropriate level of challenge.
  • In the Nurture Class we have a 3 tiered approach to supporting a pupil’s learning, including:

Universal – this is the teaching your child will receive from the Nurture Class teacher and will include adaptations to match learning needs:

  • Daily Literacy and Maths teaching, with maths and literacy skills embedded across the curriculum
  • Access to a broad and balanced curriculum of 12 subjects
  • A high ratio of adults to pupils
  • A maximum of 10 pupils in the class
  • Lessons are engaging and multi-sensory
  • Teaching resources are dyslexia-friendly
  • The use of Communicate in Print symbols to support understanding
  • A positive behaviour management system guided by the Zones of Regulation, supporting pupils to regulate themselves effectively
  • Integrated speech, language and communication support, under the guidance of a speech and language therapist
  • Integrated OT support, under the guidance of an occupational therapist

Targeted­ – it may be appropriate to consider making additional short term special educational provision to remove or reduce any obstacles to your child’s learning.  This takes the form of a graduated four part approach of a) assessing your child’s needs, b) planning the most effective and appropriate intervention, c) providing this intervention and d) reviewing the impact on your child’s progress towards individual learning outcomes.

Interventions may include:

  • Specific targeted interventions run outside the classroom. These will be limited to a number of weeks to minimise disruption to the regular curriculum
  • Individual or small group interventions designed in collaboration with SaLT or OT
  • Individual targets set twice annually from EHCPs and opportunities made in class to work on these targets
  • Additional visual supports for individuals as required around specific areas e.g. behaviour or transitions

Specialist – it may be necessary to seek specialist advice and regular long term support from a specialist professional in order to plan for the best possible learning outcomes for your child. This may include educational psychology support, speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, art/play therapy, sensory advisory teachers and the child development service.  The school may need to prioritise referrals to these services. However, for a high proportion of Woodlane High School pupils, access to these specialists is automatic due to specification a pupil’s EHC Plan.


  • Each pupil collates a Pupil Achievement Book, where they showcase their best work and demonstrate progress over time in a variety of subjects.
  • The Nurture Class teacher will analyse data from a range of sources to effectively evaluate each pupil's performance, and plan for further improvement.
  • The Woodlane bespoke Flight Path is used to track the progress of individual pupils and determine expected outcomes from different starting points.  This ensures that all pupils are challenged.
  • Our Assessment Map highlights the range of qualifications available and how these can be compared to one another.
  • A range of summative assessment procedures are used in the Nurture Class to assess progress and attainment.  For example, pupils may take part in whole school reading or maths assessments, as well as more individualised phonics or high-frequency word assessments. 
  • Additionally, adults in the Nurture Class are consistently formatively assessing pupils and adapting teaching accordingly so that all pupils are supported and challenged.

Impact – What difference is the Nurture Class curriculum making on pupils?

  • In the Nurture Class, the vast majority of pupils meet or exceed their expected progress, based on their starting points.
  • The very large majority of pupils are on track to meet or exceed their expected outcomes in Year 11 (external qualifications).
  • When pupils transition from Woodlane in Year 11, they will have gained at least 1 and up to 11 externally accredited qualifications, which reflect the pupil’s best ability.
  • The spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils is outstanding. 
  • Lack of confidence can often be a barrier to learning, and one that we aim to overcome in the Nurture Class by ensuring pupils believe that they can succeed.
  • The Zones of Regulation are used in the Nurture Class to help to develop outstanding behaviour for learning and increase pupils’ ability to self-regulate.  Additional positive behaviour strategies may be used for individual pupils if appropriate.
  • Pupils are well-prepared for the next stage of their education no Woodlane pupil has left Woodlane Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET) in the last 6 years.

* Please see our annual SEF/SIP for further details.