S4 is the first step for pupils into what is the Senior Phase of Scottish Education.

Pupils in S4 study six subjects at the most appropriate level for them. Each course is allocated five periods. In addition, the core subjects of PE, PSE and RMPS will continue to be studied.

Pupils can opt to complete Higher courses over two years (over S4 and S5) or complete one year National 5, National 4 or National 3 courses in S4. Pupils can choose to undertake a mix of two year Higher courses and one year National courses. Regardless of course selection, all S4 pupils will be presented for the appropriate qualification (National 5, National 4 or National 3) at the end of S4. Pupils who are working towards a two year Higher course at the end of S5, are introduced to appropriate aspects of some Higher work in S4. Pupils will be presented for National 5 exams at the end of S4 and Higher at the end of S5. For those studying National 4 courses in S4, the option is there to progress to National 5 in S5 and Higher in S6. Information regarding all courses is available on the school website and on the SQA website.

Throughout their journey, pupils will be supported by class teachers, Guidance teachers and their Year Head. Rigorous monitoring and tracking of pupil progress occurs throughout S4 with parents receiving a tracking report and a full report at appropriate intervals. There will also be a designated Parent Evening.

In S4, the main Assessment Block is scheduled for January. There will also be designated SQA assignment work for most subjects. Ongoing class assessments will be undertaken and a termly schedule of assessments will be issued.

As pupils engage with work towards National Qualifications, homework demands will undoubtedly increase. An average of 2 hours homework per evening would be expected with pupils engaging in revision of class work where no formal homework has been allocated. The S4 Guide to Homework is available on our website.

There are opportunities within school to support progress though National Qualifications. A programme of Supported Study is offered by subjects at identified times throughout the year.

Towards the end of S4, we review course choice moving into S5 and provide a number of supports for pupils who may wish to continue their education at college, undertake a modern apprenticeship or move into employment.