Law is a popular option at KS5 at St Anthony’s. Pupils choose the subject for a number of reasons; from a general interest in finding out how the law works to the determination to pursue a career related to law. Whatever the reason, it allows pupils to develop an important set of skills such as debate and essay writing that are transferable to other subjects and prepare them well for further study.
We offer the BTEC Extended Certificate in Applied Law which is a Level 3 course equivalent to one full A Level and is studied over two years. It is a mixture of examination and coursework and is modular. In the Year 12 coursework module, pupils learn about the different way laws are made, as well as the institutions involved in the practise of law. They will also learn about the roles of those working in the legal system such as barristers and solicitors. Additionally, they develop skills in analysis, application and evaluation. These skills are carried through, and further developed in Year 13. In their Year 12 examination module, pupils learn about the law of negligence, the Civil Court system, the awarding of damages and the details of personal injury claims. The course is wide and varied with something for anyone interested in the law. The curriculum is challenging and we have high ambitions for all of our pupils in Law, with many students using the subject as a gateway to university courses.
In Year 13 pupils study Criminal Law (exam) and develop their study of the Law of Tort (coursework). They look at the main criminal offences such as murder, manslaughter and theft as well as the defences available for those accused, such as insanity and intoxication. Pupils also study the main areas of Tort including negligence and nuisance. Pupils are able to then apply what they have learned to situations and become ‘lawyers’ themselves. We have been known to enact a full trial! Pupils build on the skills from Year 12 and become more adept at analysing legal scenarios, applying the relevant law and justifying their conclusions as well as providing a well supported evaluation of the law.
Unit 1: Dispute Solving in Civil Law.
Pupils learn about negligence, how it can be proven and what the implications are if a person is found to be liable. This is assessed in an exam that lasts 1 hr 30 mins and is worth 60 marks. It accounts for 25% of the overall grade.
Unit 2: Investigating Aspects of Criminal Law and the Legal System.
This is a coursework unit, it consists of a number of tasks from letter writing to case notes. There are 8 pieces of pass criteria, 5 pieces of merit criteria and 3 pieces of distinction criteria. These are assessed by staff in school, and a sample checked by the exam board. Pupils have the opportunity to resubmit work if they are struggling to meet the criteria. This accounts for 25% of the overall grade.
Unit 3: Applying the Law
Pupils learn about various criminal offences including murder and theft, they also learn about defences such as insanity and intoxication. This is assessed in an exam that lasts 2 hours and it worth 72 marks. It accounts for 33% of the overall grade.
Unit 4: Aspects of Tort
This is a second coursework module, it again covers pass, merit and distinction criteria. It is assessed by staff in school and moderated externally. Pupils have the opportunity to resubmit if struggling with the content. It accounts for 17% of the overall grade.
Skills to be developed:
- the ability to learn independently
- the ability to research actively and methodically
- being able to give presentations and being active group members. BTEC learners can also benefit from opportunities for deep learning where they are able to make connections among units and select areas of interest for detailed study.
- reading legal texts
- effective writing, with correct application of the law
- research skills
- analytical skills
- creative development
- preparation for assessment methods used in degrees.
We know from all those who internally, and externally, review the work of our school that our students are cheerful, creative, conscientious and confident. Employers regularly tell us that our students are professional and act with honesty and integrity. Our school has been very successful with numerous external accreditations, for the community and the individuals within it, over many decades. Our staff and students very much feel part of our Mercy community.
Our BTEC Law curriculum helps our students to develop the detailed knowledge and skills required to progress to the next stage of education, employment or training. Our teaching and learning programmes support our students to develop key skills required both at university and in the world of work. A study of the legal system, and how our laws are made encourages pupils to develop and appreciation for different ideas, and the impact that different influences can have on the government. They learn how to write key legal documentation including client letters and case notes. They acquire a range of transferrable skills including discussion, application and evaluation. These transferable skills enable students to prepare themselves proficiently for their next phase of learning and work.
Staff in the Law department support subject specific literacy and numeracy for all our students to help them succeed in their studies and they aim to develop holistically the gifts and talents of each individual within a caring, compassionate, charitable and challenging Christian environment.
Our use of real life case examples in Law helps students to develop and understanding of different social situations and the impact of various factors such as poverty and poor mental health. This along with other key skills equips them with the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding to have a positive impact within family, friendship groups, school, university, the workplace and the wider community. Our wide-ranging and broad-based curriculum offer, and varied extended curricular opportunities, within Law provide an opportunity for everyone. We provide opportunities to discuss further study with local universities and where possible experience a trial at the Crown Court.
We know that our students are reliable, responsible, resilient and radical individuals who are ready to use their talents positively wherever life may take them. Generations of students have chosen St. Anthony’s over the decades and centuries. We are extremely proud of our alumni, many of whom are regular contributors to our school community as it continues to grow and develop. Many families have fourth or fifth generation connection to our school and many staff have given decades of service, such is the impact of being part of this school community.
Everyone in our community is aware of what it means to be an Antonian: to pursue excellence, to build community, to show concern for those who may be disadvantaged and to particularly support the education of women and girls. We have definitely had an impact within this “city by the sea”, and well beyond it, since we were founded in 1904. We are confident that our distinctive ethos will continue to have a big impact as it is carried forward by future generations of Antonians.