Pathways Information

Pathways Header

Your child has reached an important phase in her/his education as she/he begins to consider the paths she/he might follow in the future. It is a demanding time for all pupils and you will play a vital role in guiding your child into making considered and informed decisions regarding courses in Years 10 and 11.

The Pathways Guidance and Subject Choices booklets contains accurate information at the time of going to print; however, the pace of change nationally in curriculum matters may mean that some adjustments are necessary. Our aim is to give your child and you every opportunity to understand the courses and the method of assessment. Our full time Careers and Work Related Learning Manager, Mrs Trout will be pleased to offer support and advice and can arrange interviews if required.

Information below relates to students choosing their options in March 2017. A copy of the Pathways Guidance booklet and Subject Choices booklet information, which provides information relating to subjects, assessment and modules can be found in the links below:

Pathways Guidance Booklet – click here to view [PDF]

Please click the following links for information on the new GCSE Grading system
Progress 8 (Explained in 3 minutes)
New GCSE Grades (1-9) explained in 2 minutes

Year 9 – The Curriculum

All students will follow the same Core subjects:

  • English
  • Maths
  • Science
  • Core Physical Education

Year 9 Students will follow one of the following pathways:

EBac Pathway

  • Core Subjects: English, Maths, Science and Pe
  • Humanities: Geography or History
  • Modern Foreign Language: French or Spanish
  • 1 Additional Option Choice

Progress 8 Pathway

  • Core Subjects: English, Maths, Science and Pe
  • A Humanities: Geography or History or a Modern Foreign Language: French or Spanish
  • 2  Additional Option Choices 

Why do I have to choose subjects from the options list?

You study fewer subjects at Key Stage 4 than at Key Stage 3 because the time required to reach GCSE standard is greater than the curriculum time in Years 7, 8 and 9.  This means you can select those subjects in which you have the greatest interest, but it also means that you will have to stop studying some subjects.  You may have to drop some subjects that you enjoy and in which you have reached a high standard: this means that your choice of subjects will have to be made very carefully.

It is our recommendation, that all students at Balby Carr Academy follow a broad and balanced curriculum. You are asked to select 1 or 2 option subjects (plus one/two reserve/s) to study in Key Stage 4. You must therefore think carefully about which subjects you select; at this stage you are advised not to ‘close doors’ which could limit your choice of subjects to pursue at sixth form, College or in Further/Higher Education. 

How do I make my choice?

You will obtain your Options Choices form on Monday 27th February during Aspire time, this will need to be returned to school and handed to your Academic Mentor on Thursday 9th March 2017. Think carefully about your subject choices; ask for advice from subject teachers, Aspire Mentors, careers staff and your parents; find out about subject content and assessment; research the necessary subject requirements for any career in which you may be interested.  There are certain subjects that you may be able to pick up again in the sixth form, even if you drop them now.  Your choice should reflect YOUR interests and abilities.  Do NOT make choices because of pressure from others. You are unlikely to have the same teachers next year as you have this year and you may well be in a different class to your friends. It is very important that YOU make the right choices NOW. The timetable for next year will be designed according to the choices students make, any requests for changes at a later date may not be possible. Classes will only run that have a viable number and where clashes are found, we will pick you up to discuss ways forward.

Subject Information

Please see attached links for the Subject Information, or optionally click HERE[PDF] for a full rundown of all of the subjects and what each one offers 

Core Subjects



Core PE






Optional Subjects


Business Studies





Food & Nutrition




Health & Social Care



Philosophy & Ethics

Product Design

Physical Education


Require Further Information?

If you require further information regarding your subject choices, please contact school to speak to Miss Brigham or Mrs Ward or email