What makes us unique?


MUSIC FOR ALL: All pupils at Shireland CBSO Academy study music as part of their core curriculum and complete both Level 2 (GCSE/BTEC) and Level 3 (A Level/BTEC) qualifications. In addition, all pupils receive tuition in at least one instrument and participate in ensemble, orchestral or choral extra-curricular activities. We believe this promotes academic success by supporting the development of language and reasoning skills, creativity, and discipline, and supports student wellbeing through the development of emotional intelligence, confidence, and resilience.

At KS3, pupils study two hours of core Music per week. In these lessons they learn to play and perform confidently, to improvise and compose, and to use music to express ideas. In addition, Music is integrated into our L4L curriculum where pupils learn how to notate music, how different musical styles, genres and tradition interact, and develop a deepening understanding of the history of the music they listen to and perform.

At KS4 pupils can choose to study either GCSE Music and/or Level 2 BTEC Music Technology. Both qualifications encourage the development of composition, listening and performance skills, as well as a wider knowledge and understanding of how music is produced and shared.

At KS5 pupils can choose to study either A Level Music and/or Level 3 BTEC Music Technology. These qualifications not only extend the knowledge and skills acquired at GCSE, but also provide pupils with the foundations from which to further pursue music beyond the Academy, either as a supplementary hobby to their vocational or academic studies at university or through an apprenticeship, or as a career where they can take advantage of our many partnerships with higher education institutions and music industry experts.

Through our unique partnership, pupils also attend seminars, workshops and masterclasses delivered by CBSO professionals. These are personalised to the pupils to ensure they get maximum benefit. Some examples of ways our pupils are able to utilise our partnership are:

  • By attending meet and greet sessions with established performers and creatives where they can ask questions and learn from the experience of others
  • By attending concerts both at the Academy and at Symphony Hall, Birmingham
  • By receiving one-to-one and small-group masterclasses from CBSO orchestra members