About Us

Our Curriculum

Thriftwood School & College is committed to providing a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum which engages, motivates, excites and challenges our learners whilst preparing them for the future. Our curriculum aims to prepare our pupils to be as independent as they can possibly be. Working with parents and other agencies, we offer a flexible approach to learning as well teaching the skills to allow pupils to grow into resilient, confident adults who are able to achieve their individual best and participate in the wider community. We believe our pupils deserve the best provision possible and therefore we have high expectations and regularly review and evaluate the curriculum to ensure it is fit for purpose. 

 We strongly believe that the provision at Thriftwood: 

  • is broad and balanced with the flexibility to meet individual needs.
  • reflects progression and is differentiated to support the range of learners that we have in school.
  • promotes care and concern for the pupils themselves, others and the environment
  • promotes spiritual, moral, social, cultural and physical development
  • promotes creativity in learning.
  • uses the local community to reinforce the work that we do in school.
  • prepares pupils for the transition to adolescence and adulthood
  • engages parents in partnerships that will enhance the pupil’s cognitive, emotional and social development.
  • operates within a clear framework of planning, assessment and reporting


All of our pupils have a special educational need and our offer includes a specialised curriculum with range of teaching methods, interventions, approaches and strategies to promote and encourage good progress and access to the curriculum.

The preparation for adulthood programme underpins everything that we offer our pupils. Through careful planning and delivery, our curriculum is personalised to meet the needs of our learners, enabling them to reach their full potential and prepare them to take their place in society. The curriculum is further spilt into other areas of learning:

Functional Skills – reading, writing, maths

Creative Development - music, art, drama, dance

Physical Development - PE, swimming, football, horse riding, massage, forest school

Independent Living Skills- PSHE, food tech, key skills

Community Awareness - Travel Training, community visits, personal safety and road safety, way to work

Knowledge and Understanding of the World - ICT, D&T, Science, History, Geography and RE

Phonics - At Thriftwood we follow the Bug Club phonics programme.  Phonics is taught regularly throughout the school, and students are placed in ability groups if appropriate.  The sessions are short, and multi-sensory if possible to promote engagement and retention.  Phonics may also be taught as part of other sessions, such as Attention Autism or outdoor learning. 

Fundamentals for the Future (FFF) - We have developed a Curriculum Framework called "Fundamentals for the Future" upon which all our subject areas are built. This framework consists of all the key skills we believe are essential for our pupils to lead an independent, healthy and purposeful life.

The framework is set out under the Preparation for Adulthood titles and links to the areas with Education Health Care Plans (EHCP). This framework is taught both discreetly and also within/through other subject areas. Pupil progress within the framework is tracked. 

Our Curriculum Summaries for the Autumn Term 2022 are below:-


Due to the current situation with COVID 19, our pupils are NOT attending swimming lessons. Once the lockdown is lifted and we are given the 'go ahead' from Essex County Council, we hope to continue with weekly sessions as before.

Pupils within Key Stage 2 will have the opportunity to swim weekly for part or all of the calendar year at school.  During these sessions, the focus is on gaining confidence in the water, following adult instructions, developing strokes and working towards achieving 25 m unaided swimming.  We also use this opportunity to promote independence, self-help skills and social communication. 

Pupils within Key stage 3 have the opportunity to further refine these skills when swimming with the class in year 8.

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