What is PSHE Education?
PSHE Education (Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education) is a planned programme of learning through which children and young people acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to successfully manage their lives – now and in the future. As part of a whole-school approach, PSHE Education develops the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of society.
What do schools have to teach in PSHE Education?
According to the National Curriculum, every school needs to have a broad and balanced curriculum that:
• promotes the spiritual, moral, social, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school;
• prepares pupils at the school for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life;
• promotes British values.
From September 2020, primary schools in England also need to teach Relationships and Health Education as compulsory subjects and the Department for Education strongly recommends this should also include age-appropriate Sex Education.
Schools also have statutory responsibilities to safeguard their pupils (Keeping Children Safe in Education, DfE, 2019) and to uphold the Equality Act (2010).
To teach PHSe we use the Jigsaw Programme for Primary PSHE which includes the statutory Relationships and Health Education. This is a spiral, progressive and fully planned scheme of work, which gives our children relevant learning experiences to help them navigate their world and to develop positive relationships with themselves and others. We chose this scheme because of its strong emphasis on emotional literacy, building resilience and nurturing mental and physical health.
Jigsaw consists of six half-term units of work (Puzzles), each containing six lessons (Pieces) covering each academic year.
Every Piece has two Learning Intentions, one specific to PSHE (including Relationships and Health Education) and the other designed to develop emotional literacy and social skills.
Puzzles are launched with a whole-school assembly, with each year group studying the same unit at the same time (at their own level), building sequentially through the school year, facilitating whole-school learning themes.
Relationships & Sex Education
An important part of the Jigsaw PSHE programme is delivered through the 'Relationships' and 'Changing Me' puzzle pieces which are covered in the summer term.
There are four main aims of teaching RSE:
• To enable children to understand and respect their bodies
• To help children develop positive and healthy relationships appropriate to their age and development
• To support children to have positive self-esteem and body image
• To empower them to be safe and safeguarded.
Each year group will be taught appropriate to their age and developmental stage. At no point will a child be taught something that is inappropriate; and if a question from a child arises and the teacher feels it would be inappropriate to answer, (for example, because of its mature or explicit nature), this information with be shared with you by your child’s class teacher. The question will not be answered to the child or class if it is outside the remit of that year group’s programme.
Below is a summary of RSE coverage within the Jigsaw scheme for each year group:
• Foundation Stage - Growing up: how we have changed since we were babies
• Year 1 - Boys’ and girls’ bodies; naming body parts
• Year 2 - Boys’ and girls’ bodies; body parts and respecting privacy (which parts of the body are private and why this is)
• Year 3 - How babies grow and how boys’ and girls’ bodies change as they grow older
• Year 4 - Internal and external reproductive body parts, body changes in girls and menstruation
• Year 5 - Puberty for boys and girls, and conception
• Year 6 - Puberty for boys and girls and understanding conception to birth of a baby
If parents/carers wish to withdraw their child from the Sex Education elements of the RSE curriculum, they should contact the Head. Please note that Sex Education is not the same as Relationships Education so a conversation with school is important to ensure there is a full understanding of the aspects of the curriculum a child can be withdrawn from.