Curriculum program

Our Curriculum Philosophy

At FHS, we approach the curriculum through two fundamental questions;

  • What can we know about an area of learning? and,
  • What can we do with this knowledge to make a positive impact on our world?

For example, what can we know about ancient history, mathematics, or science and how can we use this knowledge to better understand and to provide solutions for emerging changes in our world and beyond?

FHS seeks to enact a future-focussed learning experience in every classroom for every student and our curriculum provides the basis for this. For us, a future focussed curriculum is one that draws on the rich traditions of the past in all disciplines of knowledge, but that gazes forward to identify the big questions that confront us as a species and world, and that provides a framework in which we can adapt to, and tackle those questions at a local level. The Victorian Curriculum provides the framework from which we can contextualise learning experiences for our students and community with the view of supporting them to become qualified, socialised, and autonomous young people that feel a moral sense of responsibility for each other and the world.

Footscray High School Unique Offerings

  • Year 7 and 8 Community STEAM
  • Year 9 Community Inquiry Program
  • Year 9 EatWell Urban Intensive Program
  • Year 9 Rural Intensive Program
  • Year 9 Bike Hub Intensive Program
  • Tiered Literacy Intervention Program
  • Instrumental Music Program
  • Social Emotional Education Program (S.E.E.)
  • FHS Rowing Academy

Year 7 and 8 Program – Stage 1 – The Consolidation and Extension Stage

We get to know our students in Year 7 and introduce them to the foundational learning behaviours and experiences that will support them to flourish at Footscray High School, including a focus on growth mindset and social emotional learning. Students engage in a broad curriculum program are supported at their point of need in the skills and knowledge of all learning areas of the Victorian Curriculum. They explore the pedagogy of inquiry and the benefits of it as a mode of learning and as a way to improve their immediate world. Students from both junior campuses experience scaffolded inquiry together in Community STEAM for one day a week for one semester, both on campus, and in the community. The Year 7 and 8 program is mirrored across both the Barkly and Pilgrim Campuses.

Year 7 and 8 Curriculum Program

SubjectTime Allocation per fortnightDuration
English8 sessionsFull year subject
Mathematics8 sessionsFull year subject
Humanities6 sessionsFull year subject
Science6 sessionsFull year subject
Languages  / Literacy6 sessionsFull year subject
PE and Health6 sessionsFull year subject
Social Eotional Learning (S.E.E.)2 sessionsFull year subject
Sport2 sessionsFull year subject
Community STEAM12 sessionsOne semester subject
Food Technology6 sessionsOne term subject
Music6 sessionsOne term subject
Digital Technology6 sessionsOne term subject
Art6 sessionsOne term subject

Year 9 and 10 Program – Stage 2 – The Pathways Stage

In Year 9, students deploy the skills, knowledge and capabilities developed over the previous two years in an increasingly self-driven program allowing them to tailor their experience to suit their learning needs, passions, and future aspirations. Footscray High School offers a bespoke Year 9 Program that is responsive to the needs of students at this stage of their schooling. Students’ sphere of influence expands in their inquiry work in year 9, as they continue engaging in full day ‘Community Inquiry’ units that take them into the local community and beyond. They also undertake week-long intensive units that provide them with authentic learning environments both on campus and in the community. Students also engage in a ‘rural intensive program’ that takes students into the wilderness for a week long ‘survival camp’. Year 9 students graduate their junior campus imbued with the four pillars of the FHS, and with the skills, knowledge, capabilities to flourish at the senior school in whichever pathway they choose.

A key element of this stage at Footscray High School is the students’ transition from their junior campus’ into the newly remodelled learning environment at the senior Kinnear Campus. Lead by our senior transition team, students are supported to reflect on their learning in the first three years at FHS to map out what their chosen pathway in the senior years and beyond will look like, with an even broader range of electives available for students to choose, in addition to their core subjects. Year 10 units are very much modelled on VCE units, providing students with learning experiences and expectations that align closely with year 11 and 12. Students have the opportunity of engaging in VCE units while in Year 10.
Subjects and Time Allocation (Sessions)

Year 9 Curriculum Program

SubjectTime AllocationDuration
English8 sessionsFull year subject
Mathematics8 sessionsFull year subject
Science6 sessionsFull year subject
Humanities6 sessionsFull year subject
Health and PE6 sessionsFull year subject
Language / Literacy6 sessionsFull year subject
SEE2 sessionsFull year subject
Urban and Rural Intensives3 one week duration intensives
Community Inquiry Project12 sessionsSemester long subject
Pathway Extensions – Art6 sessionsSemester long subject
Pathway Extensions – Technology6 sessionsSemester long subject
Additional Pathway Extensions6 sessionsSemester long subject

Year 10 Curriculum Program (articulated in units of study as per VCE)

Core program
English2 units – common to all students
Health and PE2 units – common to all students
Mathematics – 2 units – selected from one of Foundation Maths, General Maths,  or Advanced Maths
Science1 unit – selected from Science units offered
Humanities1 unit – selected from Humanities units offered
Art1 unit – selected from Arts units offered
Technology1 unit – selected from Technology units offered
Elective units of studyElective Unit Options (subject to change)
The ArtsArt (Painting & Drawing), Dance, Studio Art (Digital Art & Photography), Drama, Music Performance, Sustainable Architecture Design, Visual Communication & Design, Media
EnglishLiterature, English Language, Literacy
HumanitiesHistory, Legal Studies, Civic Action & Politics, Business Studies, Philosophy, Economics
LanguagesItalian, Japanese
MathematicsAdvanced Algebra, Financial Literacy
ScienceBiology, Chemistry, General Science, Psychology, Physics, Environmental Science
TechnologyVCE Applied Computing, Food Studies, Product Design Technology,  Systems Engineering
VETSports Coaching and Recreation, Hospitality, Music Industry, Furnishing, Horticulture