Foundations of a new-style curriculum
So is this the end of departments? "It quite clearly signals the end of subject-specific departments," Helen O'Rawe, the head, says. "Pupils will begin to perceive specific subject teaching in a different way. What they experience in these subjects will not only be a change in methods of teaching, including preferred learning styles, but also we are beginning to look at an alternative curriculum in S3.
"In 2004, children will do course choices at the end of S1. At the end of S3, all children will sit FoundationGeneral or they might do Access 3.
They will be presented with a new course choice at the end of S3 that will allow them to go down the appliedvocational route.
"There is lots of potential to look at what we call subjects for children and the artificial barriers between them and what we deliver in the classroom. There is an opportunity for quite radical changes in how teachers work and deal with one another."
Some pupils will go down the traditional academic route and join others in the top three senior years, others will be able to sample new courses such as travel and tourism, care and hospitality or electronics from the Higher Still menu.
Mrs O'Rawe accepts there are dangers that the arrangement could become a "timetabling nightmare" but insists that pupils will have the choice of an entirely new range of courses within a few years.