Food Technology

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Year 7 & 8

In year 7 and 8, pupils are taught cooking and nutrition for 2 hours a week. They cook once a week and the focus is on cooking healthy savoury dishes and building up a repertoire of culinary skills. Pupils are awarded Top Chef or Star Baker awards for excellence in their practical work. Pupils learn about healthy eating, factors affecting food choice, food hygiene and safety and budgeting. Pupils are taught in mixed ability groups of no more than 20. The period of study is 13 weeks.

Assessment Information

Homework will be most weeks. At the end of each topic, students will be formally assessed.

Year 9

In year 9 all students who choose to do cooking and nutrition will have 1 lesson a week and practical lessons account for more than half of the time as our policy is to get children cooking as much as possible. The focus is on equipping pupils with skills to cook a range of healthy meals at home. Pupils will extend their knowledge and understanding of food, diet and health and their knowledge of consumer food and drink choice. Pupils will also begin to learn about the function of ingredients in cooking.

Assessment Information

Homework will be set every other week. At the end of each topic, students will be formally assessed.

Year 10 & 11

Taught in mixed ability groups

We offer WJEC GCSE Catering which has an emphasis on developing good practical skills. Year 10 is spent developing culinary skills and learning about food commodities and health and safety. During the second half of the year we complete the first piece of coursework worth 20% of the total exam grade. Half of these marks are awarded during a practical assessment where students prepare four dishes. The emphasis in year 11 is on nutrition, menu planning and the catering industry. A second piece of coursework is completed worth a further 40% and includes a practical assessment in which pupils prepare a two course meal.

The groups are usually less than 16 in a class. Food is extremely popular and we have many boys who have been inspired by the celebrity chefs. Many of our pupils go on to 'A' Level food. We are a very successful department and achieve outstanding grades and value added results. Pupils have a positive attitude and work hard to achieve their high grades.

Assessment Information

Throughout year 10 and 11, students engage in skill based practical tasks, practical cooking sessions, theory lessons and exam preparation. Assessment is ongoing and staff give written & verbal feedback to enhance independent progression. Target grades are routinely shared with students to enable them to develop their skills and aim high.

Year 12 & 13

We offer AQA Food Technology at AS and A2 and this course is offered to the consortium schools. The course involves a written paper and a practical design project in each year. Each unit carries equal marks. Achievement is good overall and many pupils excel beyond expectation. We have achieved a high number of higher grades over the last few years including A* and great value added results. Pupils have commented on how much they look forward to their food lessons, particularly the practical work. Many pupils are inspired by the course and go on to further study at university or specialist colleges to continue with a career in the Food Industry.


  • Mrs. M. Ware (Subject Leader)
  • Mrs. S. Rowe
  • Miss. H. Forbes


The Food department uses ICT extensively to deliver the courses. There is a data projector and a computer in both rooms and most lessons incorporate the use of these. Our recipes for practical lessons are projected on the screen so that pupils can easily follow recipe instructions. Students use ICT for coursework at KS4 and KS5 and our set of lap tops are used weekly to ensure all pupils can access the same resources. We have subscribed to specialist nutritional analysis software which can be accessed from home as well as school. Pupils in KS 4 and 5 have their own passwords to enable them to access their own secure area. We photograph pupils work on a regular basis and these are displayed in the corridors and in the food rooms. These are a tremendous encouragement to the pupils.

Extra Curricular

After school coursework clubs are offered throughout the duration of the coursework tasks.

Pupils regularly enter cooking competitions such as Herts Rotary Chef, Oaklands Chef of the Year, James Martin's 'Make it with Mince' Challenge and we have a very successful record.

A “Cooking for Christmas” after school club will be taking place in November and December.

Both staff and pupils like to showcase their talents and cater for school functions when required.