“Today’s children and young people are growing up in an increasingly complex world and living their lives seamlessly on and offline. This presents many positive and exciting opportunities, but also challenges and risks. In this environment, children and young people need to know how to be safe and healthy, and how to manage their academic, personal and social lives in a positive way.”
Whilst we believe that aspects of PSHCE are an integral part of school life, the explicit teaching of this curriculum aims to provide students with the information and understanding they need to be prepared for their teenage years and for their lives beyond school. At the heart of this curriculum are the school values: Ambition, Bravery and Kindness – which have been selected to provide the core principle and foundation for each area of PSHCE:
Living in the Wider World – Ambition
Health and Well-Being – Bravery
Relationships – Kindness
These values and PSHCE curriculum aim to support students to develop the knowledge and awareness to be safe, happy and engaged within society. Integral to this is a developing understanding of positive relationships and the celebration of differences both in school and the wider world. Students will understand where to go for support on key issues to keep themselves safe and well.
We are thankful to our parents/carers who have, through consultation, provided their thoughts and input into aspects of the curriculum through the questionnaire and parents’ meeting. The partnership between teachers and parents/carers is fundamentally important to ensure the positive impact of this curriculum, and it is our intention to continue the positive work that has been done with our parents.
School Policies complementing the PSHCE programme include the Behaviour and Safeguarding, Career’s Guidance, Teaching and Learning, Drugs Education, E-Safety, Equality and the SMSC Policy. The various overlaps with a range of school policies demonstrate the integrated and holistic nature of this curriculum.
Alderbrook School has been a pioneering school in the development of Life Ready Solihull for a number of years. We worked in collaboration with other local schools to design a ‘Life Ready’ programme which has been developed in our school to embrace aspects of employability, Personal and Social Education, and character development. In light of the statutory (2020) Guidance for Relationships, Health and Sex Education and as an early adopter of this programme September 2019, we have re-shaped the PSHCE curriculum and mapped it across different delivery points with age appropriate consideration.
Opportunities to visit content in different contexts have been developed across our long term plans, so that students re-consider key issues in a range of contexts as they grow up.
The school has appointed four members of staff to design and lead the curriculum, demonstrating the significant value placed on the programme for the overall well-being, needs and happiness of our students:
Ms S Batool – Relationships Education
Mr M D’Arcy and Mr S Hawker – Health and Mental Well-Being
Mr C Griffiths – Living in the Wider World.
Primarily, PSHCE is delivered as a bespoke lesson once a fortnight, and also on three Life Ready Days, which are devoted to the deeper study of aspects of this curriculum and which enables visitors to support the programme. Our partners include Loudmouth Theatre Company, the West Midlands Police, Urban Heard, Umbrella, Skillbuilder, Made Training and Dreadlockalien (educational poet), as well as various business partners supported by Life Ready Solihull.
As the member of staff most aware of the pastoral needs of their classes, form tutors are the main deliverers of the PSHCE lessons. This not only strengthens those relationships pastorally, it also enables teachers to have greater awareness of concerns and sensitivities in their form group. The form tutor is also best equipped to detect any concerns or misconceptions arising from class activities, and as a point of contact each day, is able to support that child in their school lives.
Subjects across the curriculum also deliver aspects of the programme, including in particular, E-safety in Computing lessons, Families in R.E., Sex Education in Science, and Health and Well-being in P.E. The Assembly Programme provides a further platform for some aspects of the programme where a presentational style of delivery is appropriate, with a particular focus on aspects of Citizenship, Career’s Education and resilient behaviours.
Furthermore, Year 7 students will have one ‘Aspire’ lesson a fortnight, focusing on developing independence and supporting students to transition to Key Stage 3, and develop explicitly, the virtues, characteristics and employability skills of a good learner.
Please refer to the Overview for PSHCE to see how the programme is planned for current delivery.