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RE at St James's

“The RE curriculum is impressive for its breadth and challenge and for the pastoral awareness and care that underpins its structure.” SIAMs Report 2016. 

Religious Education at St James’s enables our pupils to think like a theologian. We want all of our pupils to think at a deeper level when studying beliefs and faith. Our vision to have all of our pupils becoming theologians means that they will develop the skills of explanation, evaluation, critical thinking and decision making, whilst also developing their levels of tolerance, awareness and empathy.

Our curriculum contributes to the development of a more religiously literate and tolerant society.

Throughout Key Stage 3, the lessons are fun and engaging yet challenging and the religions studied at KS3 ensure progression at KS4. At GCSE level, Religious Education is a rigorous, demanding and academic subject in which our pupils will be asked to consider different religious and humanist viewpoints on topics such as; war, crime, marriage, euthanasia and abortion. 

The spiritual development of our pupils through RE lessons is key. We hope all of our pupils leave St James’s living out our motto; ‘‘Caring for others † Achieving excellence’. 


Please click below to view what you will study in RE

RE Learning Journey

Key Stage 3

If you say sorry but don’t really mean it, does it still count?

Is love an invention created by humans?

Where is God when people are suffering?

These are the types of questions raised in Religious Education, and sometimes there are no clear answers! Being able to think and write about issues from more than one point of view, particularly sensitive issues, is one of the most vital R.E skills a person can develop.

Throughout the Key Stage 3 Curriculum, pupils will study;

  • Who am I? – Welcome to St James’s!
  • Asking questions – Looking at meaningful questions such as ‘Is God all loving?’
  • Sacred Spaces – The Church and the Cathedral
  • The Creation story (Christianity)
  • The Fall (Christianity)
  • Dangerous beliefs (Early Christianity)
  • An introduction to Islam
  • Where is God?
  • An introduction to Judaism
  • Christian beliefs about God – Trinity, Incarnation and Gospel
  • Eastern faiths – Hinduism, Buddhism and Sikhism 

Key Stage 4

 Years 9 and 10:

Religious Education at GCSE level begins in Year 9. We follow AQA Specification A Thematic studies. All pupils are entered for the RE GCSE, which pupils sit at the end of Year 10. Assessment for the GCSE takes the form of two examinations; Paper 1: Christianity and Islam, and Paper 2: Thematic studies.

Paper 1: Christianity and Islam

Pupils are required to learn:

  • Christian beliefs and teachings including the nature of God and Jesus and Salvation.
  • Christian practices including the role of the church on a local, national and international level and worship and festivals.
  • Islamic beliefs and teachings including the nature of God, key beliefs and authority.
  • Islamic practices including worship, the five pillars of Islam & the Ten obligatory acts and festivals.

Paper 2: Thematic studies

Pupils are required to learn:

  • Theme A- Religion, relationships and families
  • Theme B – Religion and Life
  • Theme D – Religion, peace and conflict
  • Theme E – Religion, crime and punishment

More information regarding the GCSE specification can be found here: https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/religious-studies/gcse/religious-studies-a-8062/specification-at-a-glance

Year 11:

“RE provision for Year 11 pupils is exciting because, free from the constraints of an examination, pupils have the opportunity to question more deeply a range of moral and religious themes. They explore them from theological and philosophical perspectives.” (SIAMs Report 2016) Throughout Year 11, pupils are able to study the Holocaust, prejudice & discrimination, medical technology and the afterlife. The reduction of pressure in Year 11 ensures a good balance of progress and pastoral care for our pupils. 

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