PSHE, or personal, social, health and education, is a planned programme of learning through which children and young people acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to manage their lives.
As part of our whole school approach, PSHE develops the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of society. It prepares them to manage many of the most critical opportunities, challenges and responsibilities they will face growing up in such rapidly changing and challenging times. It also helps them to connect and apply the knowledge and understanding they learn in all subjects to practical, real-life situations while helping them to feel safe and secure enough to fulfil their academic potential.
In our programmes we actively promote British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs to prepare our pupils for life in modern day Britain. Our citizenship lessons enable our pupils to understand the British democratic process and how to effect peaceful changes in society.
All our year groups have timetabled PSHE time but we encourage a cross-curricular approach to the development of PSHE skills and understanding. Circle time is used to listen to others and to be heard with the help of class friends. Pupils learn about similarities and differences between people and cultures.
‘I have come that you might have life and have it to the full’ (John, 10.10)
We are involved in relationships and sex education precisely because of our Christian beliefs about God and about the human person. The belief in the unique dignity of the human person made in the image and likeness of God underpins the approach to all education in our Catholic school.
Our approach to RSE therefore is rooted in the Catholic Church’s teaching of the human person and presented in a positive framework of Christian ideals. At the heart of the Christian life is the Trinity; Father, Son and Spirit in communion, united in a loving relationship and embracing all people and all creation. As a consequence of the Christian belief that we are made in the image and likeness of God, gender and sexuality are seen as God’s beauty, and share in the divine creativity.
RSE therefore, will be placed firmly within the context of relationships as it is there that sexuality grows and develops. Following the guidance of the Bishops of England and Wales and as advocated by the DfE, RSE will be firmly embedded in the PSHE framework as it is concerned with nurturing human wholeness and integral to the physical, spiritual, emotional, moral, social and intellectual development of pupils. It is centred on Christ’s vision of being human as good news and will be positive and prudent, showing the potential for development, while enabling the dangers and risks involved to be understood and appreciated. All RSE will be in line with the Church’s moral teaching.
At St. Mary Magdalene, we will be using the Ten:Ten programme for Catholic primary schools, Life to the Full, to teach Relationships Education and Health Education within the context of a Christian understanding of human sexuality rooted in the wisdom and teaching of the Catholic Church.
We will deliver this teaching through the prism of Catholic RSHE. The framework of our programme is taken from the Model Catholic RSE Programme by the Catholic Education Service, which has been highlighted by the Department of Education as a work of good practice.
Life to the Full is a fully resourced Scheme of Work in Relationships and Health Education (RHE) for Catholic primary schools which embraces and fulfils the new statutory curriculum. Taught with a spiral approach to learning, in which pupils will revisit the same topics at an age-appropriate stage through their school life, the programme includes teaching about personal health, physical and emotional wellbeing, strong emotions, private parts of the body, personal relationships, family structures, trusted adults, growing bodies, puberty, periods, life cycles, the dangers of social media, where babies come from, an understanding of the Common Good and living in the wider world. The entire teaching is underpinned with a religious understanding that our deepest identity is as a child of God - created chosen and loved by God. The programme is fully inclusive of all pupils and their families.