The Green Pathway is our curriculum for semi-formal learners. This represents the majority of students at Highfield Ely. ​

The curriculum has been designed with the needs of our learners in mind. These are wide-ranging and incorporate a number of different diagnoses and learning styles. The curriculum has been designed so that it can be adapted to suit the needs of all Green Pathway classes throughout the school.  ​

The primary focuses of this curriculum are communication, interaction, physical, social and emotional well-being; we also lay the foundations of subjects such as English and Maths. ​Our aim is always for pupils to make ongoing progress towards living as independently as possible into adulthood. 

Who is on the Green Pathway?

Green Pathway learners are able to access subject specific learning in core areas of the curriculum. They will need additional input in developing communication and independence skills. Students working within this Pathway commonly present with the following characteristics: ​

  • Some intentional communication of immediate needs

  • Some social skills, but significantly behind age related expectations

  • Emerging problem solving skills

  • May be able to access some subject specific teaching

The Pathway for each student is decided on an individual basis based on the best way to meet needs. ​The Pathway system is designed to be fluid, meaning that pupils are able to move between Pathways throughout their school career if appropriate for their needs. 

The Curriculum

The curriculum is divided into 6 broad areas:

The Green Pathway curriculum is taught through an engaging termly topic and text, within a five-year rolling programme.

Green Pathway Five Year Plan

Updated: 20/12/2023 51 KB
Updated: 20/12/2023 52 KB


The majority of primary-aged learners begin in the Green Pathway, as this developmental curriculum is ideal to meet the needs of our pupils in EYFS, Key Stage 1 and 2. A small number of primary aged pupils will begin in the Blue Pathway as this will best suit their needs.   

In the primary department, learning opportunities are provided by a range of play-based and multi-sensory activities, often through continuous provision or small group activities.  Many learners will remain on the Green Pathway for their entire educational experience at Highfield Ely. The curriculum is adapted to be age-appropriate for older pupils.  As an example, for the topic ‘To The Rescue’, the primary classes may have a superhero theme, whereas the secondary classes may focus on a more functional understanding of the emergency services and how to recognise and access them.

Other learners will begin on the Green Pathway but later move into the Yellow Pathway as they progress through the school and become ready for a more formal curriculum, usually as they move into Key Stage 3 or 4. 

Interventions and therapies

Attention Autism

This is an intervention model designed by Gina Davies, Specialist Speech and Language Therapist. It aims to develop both attention skills and natural and spontaneous communication through the use of visually based and highly motivating activities.

AAC - Augmentative and alternative communication

This includes Makaton, PECS, Communication books, Visual supports, timetables and social stories. We aim to have total communication classrooms where pupils are able to use the right communication methods for their individual needs.

Rebound Therapy

Exercise therapy which uses trampolines to provide opportunities for movement, therapeutic exercise and recreation for people across the whole spectrum of special needs.

Horse Riding

Pupils attend horse riding on a referral basis. This helps support both their physical and social development.

Lego®-Based Therapy

A group designed to support development of social communication skills through the engaging and motivational medium of Lego®.

Independence (Based on the TEACCH approach)

Pupils access this provision to support them become more independent and autonomous learners. There is a strong emphasis on structure and routine supported by visuals.


Learners in year 10 and 11 will complete an ASDAN Life Skills challenge from each of the following areas:

  • English 

  • Maths 

  • One of the following Preparation for Adulthood areas: Community inclusion, Employment, Good Health, Independent Living and Housing

In 6th Form the focus switches solely to Preparation for Adulthood. Learners will complete three ASDAN Life Skills challenges, one from each of the remaining areas that they have not covered:

  • Community Inclusion 

  • Employment

  • Good Health

  • Independent Living and Housing 


We know from feedback from students, parents/carers, further education providers and employers that our Green Pathway has the following impacts:

  • for some learners, the Green Pathway will have allowed them to transition onto the Yellow Pathway in KS3

  • for other students remaining on the Green Pathway is more appropriate. They develop into confident young people, often having worked through anxieties around self-perceived failures in learning and communicating and gaining qualifications

  • they are more able to access the world around them with reduced support because they have developed the knowledge and skills to do so. This could be linked to performing self care, reading and writing, speaking and listening, improvements in their ability to self-regulate behaviour, being able to tell the time, travel confidently and much more

  • our young people are regular attenders - whether at an FE college, Social Enterprise or in a place of work

  • pupils are willing and more likely to try new experiences as they have had so many opportunities to do so during their time in school

Moving on from the Green Pathway

Outcomes for learners in the Green Pathway vary according to the individual progress they make against curriculum targets and EHCP outcomes. Some students will be best served by a move to a further education setting in year 12. Others will stay on at Highfield until the end of the year in which they are 19. The focus for pupils in the Green Pathway at this stage is functional skills to enable our learners to live as independently as possible when they leave Highfield; their learning will include personal care, money skills and home management skills, as well as functional literacy and numeracy. Discussions on moving on begin from the year 9 annual review. 

If you would like any further information on the Green Pathway, please contact the Headteacher, Adam Daw at adaw@highfield.cambs.sch.uk