In English, we aim to teach our students to be competent in being clear, coherent and accurate in both spoken and written communication as well as reading and understanding a range of texts and responding appropriately. Focusing and building on the areas of reading, writing and speaking and listening enables pupils to successfully engage in both the classroom and with the world beyond; they are able to communicate effectively and to function in a wide range of situations and contexts. Through the study of English, we encourage students to not only demonstrate secure understanding of the conventions of written language, including grammar, spelling and punctuation, but to focus on creativity, cultural understanding and critical understanding.
Through the study of literature, we explore how ideas, experiences and values are portrayed differently in texts from a range of cultures and traditions, whilst at the same time gaining an understanding of the English literary heritage. Students thus gain a sense of the culture of their society, the groups in which they participate and questions of local and national identity. Additionally, developing critical skills allows pupils to challenge ideas, interpretations and assumptions on the grounds of logic, evidence or argument, and is essential if students are to form and express their own views independently.