Year 9 Options

Over the course of January and February 2024, Year 9 students will be undertaking the process of selecting their subject option choices for study throughout Key Stage 4. Due to the changing needs of our students, and government directives, we review our curriculum offer yearly so please do not assume that courses that were available to elder siblings will be the same for our current Year 9 students.


  • All year 9 students will be scheduled a 1-1 meeting with a member of the Senior Leadership Team. This meeting will help students to explore how their choice of options subjects could support their future progression / career choice.
  • Students will have a series of assemblies where the options selection process and the possible destinations after John Smeaton Academy are outlined. These assemblies will support students in understanding how options can help them to secure the Gift of Choice.
  • Curriculum Leaders will present to all students in one of the assemblies dedicated to the options process. These presentations provide detail about the courses on offer including what they will study and how they will be assessed.
  • Students will receive a Year 9 Options Booklet providing them with a course outline and the assessment objectives for each course to help them make an informed decision.
  • Year 9 Options Evening will take place on Tuesday 27 January. This evening will provide students, parents, and carers with an opportunity to speak with curriculum leaders and teachers of each subject area to support them with their final choices.

KS4 Mandatory Subjects

All students will study the following mandatory subjects:

  • English Language
  • English Literature
  • Mathematics
  • Combined Science
  • Physical Education (Non-Examined Subject)

The vast majority of students will also study a language from the following subjects based on what they have studied during KS3:

  • Spanish
  • French
  • Mandarin

KS4 Options Subjects

Students will choose either History or Geography to complete their English Baccalaureate set of subjects. This is the gold standard in education and we offer this to all of our students.

Students will then choose a further two option subjects to complete their suite of qualifications from the list below:

Option Subject Type of Qualification
Geography GCSE
Fine Art GCSE
Photography GCSE
Textiles GCSE
Religious Studies GCSE
Computer Science GCSE
Drama GCSE
Hospitality & Nutrition Vocational
Music Vocational
Sport Vocational
Health & Social Care Vocational

If you have any questions regarding the options process or require any additional support, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Miss Smail, Assistant Principal.