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updated on 18 November 2021
Ref: 36156
School types: All · School phases: All

If your school's reviewing or updating its curriculum, find out what it needs to cover to stay compliant with requirements and meet DfE expectations.

Your trust is responsible for the curriculum in your school

It must make sure the curriculum is "balanced and broadly based" and:

  • Promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school and of society
  • Prepares pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life

This is set out in section 1A of the Academies Act 2010 and section 2.1 of the National Curriculum framework.

There are some other requirements and expectations too, which we explain below.

  • Check your funding agreement to see what it says about curriculum in your trust
  • Ask your trust for more information or if you're unsure of anything in the agreement

You can see an example of how curriculum is covered in the DfE's model funding agreement (single academy trust from section 2.41, multi-academy trust from section 2.21). 

Academies don't have to follow the National Curriculum, but must still teach the following subjects up to

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