Business

The Business, Economics & Accounting dept.

 “An entrepreneur is someone who jumps off a cliff and builds a plane on the way down”

Reid Hoffman co-founder and executive chairman of LinkedIn

The following members of staff form the business department at King Edwards VI School:

Mr C Rossin: Head of Department (BA Hons Economics; Qualified Accountant – ACA & CTA)

Miss R Baggott: Teacher of Business & Economics (BA Dual Hons Business Administration and Law; MA Education)

Mr N Turner: Teacher of Accounting, Business & Economics (BA Hons Industrial Economics; Qualified Accountant – ACMA and CIMA)

Mrs C Cusack: Teacher of Business (BA Hons Business Management; BA Hons Politics including Economics and Geography)

Curriculum Intent 

Vision 

In an increasingly globalised world, where business is conducted across international borders, and where many of the jobs of the future will be within industries that do not yet exist (and the technology to be used has not yet been invented) the aim of business education today is to equip students with the knowledge, skills, and flexibility, to help them navigate a life-long working career in an ever-changing world. 

At King Edward VI School, the aim of the Business department is to develop young people who can: 

  • develop the language and skills to be successful entrepreneurs / employees / consumers 
  • understand their place in, and their impact on, the local, national and global community 
  • identity where and how they can have a positive impact on the wider community around them 

The ultimate goal is to support students to both understand their role as global citizens and to enable them to be the business leaders of the future. 

Embedding literacy and numeracy 

Understanding the language of business is key to success. Whilst students are continually exposed to business terminology on a daily basis – whether that be: in their daily interactions with businesses as consumers; more generally via the use of business language on TV / cinema / radio; or more specifically via targeted marketing through social media – this can often lead to misunderstanding / misinterpretation, especially when the use of business language by non-specialists in the media is often incorrect (and meaning is often inferred). Literacy skills in business are core to the delivery of the subject with key term definitions and contextual examples being the foundation of understanding. This is then built on to enable students to develop logical and structured arguments based on varied business case studies. Modelling by staff (both verbally and written) supports students to develop their language skills and when this is combined with effective questioning, structured writing plans and exemplar written answers, enables students to develop their “disciplinary” literacy skills in the subject. 

Numeracy skills are also fundamental to success in business. Whilst all students have usually been taught (via their mathematics lessons) the technical numeracy skills and techniques required in business, the ability to apply these to the contextual case studies used in business is a difficult skill for students to develop. As numeracy is integral to the business course, it is important these skills are embedded in student learning. Regular repetition of the same numeracy skills (across different business context) combined with gradual development of the techniques used over the two years of the course support numeracy development, whilst analysis of numerical data leading to supported written arguments by students reinforce understanding as well as the importance of both literacy and numeracy skills in the subject. 

Encouraging independence 

Students are encouraged to use their own personal experiences to help contextualise their understanding of the Business theory covered. The emphasis on students to explain the rationale behind their views to support their arguments (and the recognition that in business there is often not one right answer but instead multiple possible correct approaches dependent on how they implemented) encourages students to have confidence in / and express their own views. In addition, use of a wide range of business case studies (as well as the diverse business experience that teaching have and refer to in lessons) helps students relate to the subject and identify areas of business that specifically interest them. 

Enrichment  

The business course opens up many different enrichment opportunities. Trips to businesses (including trips abroad) as well as guest speakers help to widen students’ appreciation of the subject. In addition, students have the opportunity to follow the annual Young Enterprise programme (where the school has twice made the national finals with one group going on to the European finals). 

Structure 

Delivery of the Business course is focused on developing students’ knowledge of the theories and business models that make businesses successful, as well as exposing students to the varied and diverse real world examples of businesses ranging from;  

  • small local business to world-wide global companies 
  • providers of “basic” goods and services to “new” technology start-ups 
  • profit maximising organisations to “third sector” social enterprises and charities.   

The structure of the GCSE Business course is based on the ten unit Edexcel GCSE qualification with the order of delivery chosen to support logical progression, whilst at the same time fitting in with the school curriculum plan. Assessment is continual throughout the course and comes in the form of formative assessment based on teacher assessment and student self and peer assessment, as well as end of unit assessments that act as both summative progress measures and formative feedback to identify future areas of development (all using the “WWW” and EBI” model). 

Key Stage 4 Scheme of Work 

GCSE business is an option subject in Yr10 (currently approx. 50% of the cohort take the subject) and is delivered through 5 hours of lessons every two weeks. The delivery of content is as follows: 

Yr10  Yr11 
Unit 1.1 – Enterprise and Entrepreneurship 

  • The Role of Enterprise 
  • Risk and Reward 
  • Dynamic Nature of Businesses 

[12 hrs inc. test & feedback] 

Unit 2.1 – Growing the Business (cont.) 

  • Re-cap: Growth, Objectives & Ethics 
  • Globalisation 

[22 hrs inc. test and feedback – (Yr11:8hrs)] 

Unit 1.2  – Spotting a Business Opportunity 

  • Customer Needs 
  • Market Segmentation 
  • Competitive Environment 
  • Market Research 

[16 hrs inc. test & feedback] 

Unit 2.5 – Human Resource Decisions 

  • Organisational Structures 
  • Recruitment 
  • Training 
  • Motivation 

[15 hrs inc. test and feedback] 

Unit 1.3 – Putting Ideas into Practice 

  • Aims and Objectives 
  • Revenues, Costs and Profits 
  • Break-Even 
  • Cash Flow 
  • Sources of Finance 

[14 hrs inc. test & feedback] 

Unit 2.4 – Financial Decisions 

  • Re-cap Yr10 Finance (Unit – 1.3)   
  • Business Calculations 
  • Understanding Business Performance 

[10 hrs delivery time only] 

Revision 

Year 11 Mock Exams: GCSE Exam Paper 1 Feedback 

[four weeks] 

Unit 1.4 – Making the Business Effective  

  • Options for Start-Up and Small Businesses 
  • Business Location 
  • Marketing Mix 
  • Business Plans 

[14 hrs inc. test & feedback] 

Unit 2.3 –  Operational Decisions  

  • Business Operations 
  • Working with Suppliers 
  • Managing Quality 
  • The Sales Process 

[14 hrs inc. test (Unit 2.3 + 2.4) and feedback] 

Unit 1.5 – Understanding External Influences 

  • Stakeholders 
  • Technology 

[18 hrs inc. test & feedback] 

Unit 2.2 – Marketing Decisions 

  • Product  
  • Price 
  • Place 
  • Promotion 
  • Using the marketing mix to make decisions 

[14 hrs inc. test and feedback] 

Revision 

Year 10 Mock Exams: Units 1.1 – 1.4 

Feedback 

[three weeks] 

Unit 1.5 – External Influences (cont.) 

  • Legislation 
  • The Economy 
REVISION for GCSE EXAM 

[four weeks up to May half term] 

Unit 2.1 – Growing the Business 

  • Business growth 
  • Changes in aims and objectives 
  • Ethics & the environment 

[22 hrs in total inc. test & feedback (Yr10:14hrs)] 

GCSE Exams 

Paper 1 – before May half term 

Paper 2 – after May half term 

Students on study leave after May half term 

Why study Business at King Edward VI School?

Everything in life involves Business!

Think about that new top you bought last week and then think of what businesses made it possible for you to be wearing it right now? The obvious ones are the Retail outlet (ie. the shop) that you bought the top from and the Manufacturing plant (ie. the factory) that made the top. But what about: The Cotton growers? The Packaging makers? The Delivery company? Health & Safety? Even the companies that manage the finances of all those businesses. Thinking about all those processes and people allows you begin to understand what Business is all about.

Business is a major part of everyones’ life and anybody who has a good idea about how businesses work are at an immediate advantage in the future

As the world becomes more dependent on globalised trade and investment, the demand for well-trained business people grows stronger. Studying Business gives you the skills that will enable you to succeed in any situation in any area of your life, is an investment in your future, and the journey really is a lot of fun! We live in a corporate world and as a result of this business is a universal subject.  There are few, if any, careers for which an understanding of business would not be a major benefit and knowledge of Business (as well as Economics or Accounting) is key to attaining and succeeding in highly paid and challenging roles in all levels of management.

Reasons to study with the Business Department at King Edward VI School:

Continual high levels of academic success. Over the last 5 years achievement across the range of subjects delivered by the Business department has been as follows:

  • 80-85% of GCSE Business students achieve A*-C grades (national average – 65%) with 25%-40% achieving A*-A grades (national average – 15%)
  • 40-60% of A level Accounting students achieve A*-B grades (national average – 15%)
  • 50-65% of A level Business students achieve A*-B grades (national average – 45%)
  • 55-80% of A level Economics students achieve A*-B grades (national average – 55%)
  • Over 80% of students that study Business, Economics or Accounting at A level chose to study a business related degree at university
  • We are the only school in Staffordshire to offer Accounting at A level (with the added benefit that is taught by professionally qualified accountants)
  • The department are able to provide a real insight into the world of Business having worked in a variety of roles in both the public and private sector. Industry experience of staff in the department includes; Accountancy, Banking, Sales, Marketing, Retail, Recruitment and the Civil Service (in addition, they have an impressive combined total of 46 years of experience in education.

The Young Enterprise (YE) scheme run by the business department continues to be a hugely popular and successful opportunity for students. In 2016 the KEVI YE team came third in the UK National Finals winning an extensive range of awards (the 2016 YE team continue to trade as an independent business with their product the “at risk disk” – www.atriskdisk.co.uk – being sold nationally in Halfords)

The business department are keen to help students engage in as wide and varied range of experiences related to the business world as possible and (in addition to the YE programme) over a number of years the department have provided the following opportunities for students: 9 day trip to China, Treasury Target 2.0 competition, CIPFA Management competition, IFS Investor Challenge, visits to local businesses (eg. Cadbury, Coors brewery, Drayton Manor etc.)

Don’t just take our word for it, see what our students say:

“Business was always my favourite subject and, since studying it at university, it’s given me the opportunity to work for a worldwide organisation. I love it because it is professional but sociable, it develops your academic and personal skills; and you can do anything with business.”

Harriet Evans – studying Business at Bournemouth University and completing a work placement year at IBM in London

“I initially chose to study Law at university but soon realised that after my experience at A level that Business Studies would be more beneficial to me in the future due to the huge amounts of opportunities available. Studying A level has given me a head start in the first year, and having a solid foundation of knowledge has allowed me to enjoy university more.”

Lucy Pocock – studying Management at the University of Leeds

“Business Studies has helped me in both my uni work and the jobs I have currently. It allows me to understand the wider implications of the role I play in a business, as well as appreciating business strategy and objectives.”

Aidan Thompson – studying Finance and Management at Leicester University. Aidan is completing contract work for KPMG during term time and has also secured an Internship at J.P. Morgan

Future employment opportunities?

Students completing A Level Business go on to study a range of subjects at university or go directly into employment. Business A Level can lead directly onto a business degree course and in addition is common for entry onto university subjects such as accountancy, law, management, economics and international finance. Alternatively, A Level Business will give students a good grounding and the relevant skills essential for the successful transition into the world of work.

Want to find out more about the exciting opportunities with the Business department at King Edward VI School?

Click on the links below to find out more information about each of the different subjects we offer, as well as the Young Enterprise programme and the other opportunities available to students who study in the Business, Economics and Accounting department at King Edward VI School: