At John Port Spencer Academy we prepare our students for a fast moving and rapidly changing world. We have a culture of high expectations and our values – aspiration, resilience, responsibility – are those which allow students to succeed both in school and beyond. We challenge and motivate students to ensure that they reach their full potential. While there is a strong emphasis on academic achievement, students are given the support and guidance to develop as individuals, and we offer a wide range of extra-curricular activities outside the classroom.

As a large academy we are able to offer a broad curriculum which gives students access to a range of academic disciplines. We recognise the key importance of English, Maths and Science but also believe passionately in the value of languages, humanities and the arts.

As well as the academic curriculum, the academy is very aware of the value of PSHE, Citizenship and careers education. These form an integral part of our education, offered through our curriculum, PSHE and personal development programme.

Students at John Port Spencer Academy are encouraged to take part in extra curricular activities and are expected to make a positive contribution to wider school life and the community.

The curriculum strategy is designed to

  • Maximise achievement
  • Be flexible and responsive
  • Offer a wide range of subjects to ensure students’ options are open
  • Promote aspiration and learning for life
  • Build community cohesion
  • Develop a clear sense of direction and focus for the future
  • Prepare students to make a positive contribution to Modern Britain

Progress Checks

Students will receive progress checks on a regular basis during the academic year. These will include information about student attainment, effort, behaviour and attendance.

Students are expected to put maximum effort into their studies. Effort has a direct impact on attainment, therefore John Port Spencer Academy use the effort descriptors as detailed here.

For Years 7, 8 and 9, academic achievement rating descriptors are used to detail what we expect your child will know and be able to do by the end of the academic year. Further details can be found here.

Key Stage 3 Curriculum

At Key Stage 3, all students follow the National Curriculum by studying English, Mathematics, Science, Art, Geography, History, ICT, Languages (French, German and/or Spanish), Performing Arts (Art, Music and Drama), Physical Education, Religious Education and Technology. The Key Stage 3 curriculum develops a strong foundation for these subject areas, strengthening skills and building knowledge required for further study, whilst striving to develop a passion and enthusiasm for learning.

Key Stage 4 Curriculum

Key Stage 4 is introduced in Year 10. Our Pathways process is based on the interests, abilities and aptitude of pupils and they are supported at an individual level to help them choose the subjects that are right for them. We offer a range of GCSE and Vocational qualifications. All students study English, Mathematics and Science In addition, all students take part in timetabled physical education.

Key Stage 3 & 4 Personal Development Curriculum

The Personal Development curriculum is a crucial part of every students’ education where they will learn about life skills. Personal Development aims to advance a person’s capabilities and potential, facilitate employability, and enhance quality of life and the realisation of dreams and aspirations. Full details about the Key Stage 3 & 4 Personal Development Curriculum can be found here.

Key Stage 5 Curriculum

Students are offered a varied diet of academic A Levels and Vocational qualifications that cater for Level 3 needs, challenging and spurring pupils to compete for places at Russell Group Universities and for Apprenticeships. Courses are available in a wide range of subjects and guidance is given in helping students to choose the subjects that are right for them and their future plans.

More information about the subject content delivered at all Key Stages and a full list of Key Stage 4 and 5 courses can be found in the documents below.


The Knowledge Curriculum

The Knowledge Curriculum

The Knowledge Curriculum – Student Guide

Knowledge Organisers

Satchel One

Link to Satchel One

Satchel One Parent Guide Video

If you experience any difficulties after watching the Satchel One Parent Guide please contact the following:

For technical issues such as passwords please contact Mr K Nelmes –

For questions regarding homework policy please contact Mrs A Vann –

For questions regarding usability please contact Mr R Parkes –


Documents and useful links


John Port Spencer Academy engage with many experiences outside the Academy including the following experiences.

  • The Duke of Edinburgh Awards Scheme
  • The National Citizenship Service
  • Royal Society of Chemistry’s National Schools’ Analyst Competition being held at Keele University
  • Royal Society of Chemistry’s top of the bench competition
  • The Young Engineers and Scientists of Derbyshire (YESD) competition at Derby University
  • Jaguar Maths in Motion
  • Rolls Royce STEM event
  • Ingestre Hall Art and performing arts residential
  • Camps International
  • Whole school productions
  • Peer Mentoring Training
  • UK Maths Challenge, Leeds University
  • Sports Leaders UK
  • Derbyshire County Cup
  • English Schools Cup
  • Student Leadership throughout the academy is strong with opportunities for students to be prefects, subject ambassadors and peer mentors in all Year Groups.
  • Student Leadership throughout the academy is strong with opportunities for students to be prefects, subject ambassadors and peer mentors in all Year Groups.