Personal, Social, Health & Citizenship Education
“The behaviour and safety of pupils are outstanding.” - Ofsted
At Aston Fields Middle School, we believe that a balanced PSHCE curriculum makes a major contribution to a range of statutory responsibilities. Whilst the curriculum itself is non-statutory, our ‘outstanding’ provision ensures:
- Clear consideration of the personal and economic well-being of the young people within our community
- Highly commended provision of ‘Sex and Relationships’ education
- Development of the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils
- Preparation for opportunities, responsibilities and experiences in later life
In our June 2014 Ofsted inspection it was quoted that “The behaviour and safety of pupils are outstanding.”
During the ‘full inspection’ process, inspectors are required to investigate how pupils are learning to develop and apply an understanding of right and wrong; for example, by their attitudes to, and use of, racist, disability or homophobic language in and around school.
Safety and safeguarding are a priority for the Department of Education, Local Authorities and Ofsted. There is a clear understanding, from all parties, that there is a definite link between an outstanding PSHCE curriculum and an ‘outstanding’ school.
Aston Fields Middle School is an ‘outstanding’ school in all aspects of educational provision.
What makes PSHCE ‘outstanding’?
- PSHCE is a priority to the headteacher and at the heart of the school’s work
- Teachers are well trained
- The curriculum is regularly reviewed to ensure topics studied meet the needs of pupils, parents and carers
- The quality of teaching is regularly observed to ensure the quality of education is outstanding
Curriculum content is County approved. It is well structured but always allows a level of flexibility to deal with key issues as they arise. Topics studied are chosen according to relevant local data as well as pupil voice/need.
At the ‘core’ of our ethos towards PSHCE education is the understanding that:
‘Children with higher levels of emotional, behavioural, social and school well-being on average have higher levels of academic achievement and are more engaged in school, both concurrently and in later years.’
We strive to ensure:
- Pupils demonstrate excellent personal and social skills
- Pupils form open, harmonious and trusting relationships
- Pupils are able to express their feelings and opinions
- Pupils are able to listen well to each other and ask thoughtful questions
- Pupils are able to use sound evidence to justify their own views
- Pupils take pride in their contribution to the school
- Pupils are able to take on various roles and responsibilities
- Pupils are involved in local community issues/ events
- Pupils are able to describe what they have learnt with maturity and enthusiasm
- Pupils are independent learners
Our commitment to our pupils:
- Teachers have excellent subject knowledge and skills
- Teachers use a range of well-chosen and imaginative resources to support learning
- Teachers draw on current regional and national research and statistical data to illustrate and exemplify lesson content
- Teachers have high expectations of their students and build trusting relationships with their pupils
- Teachers put various interventions in place, as and when appropriate, to ensure the needs of all learners are being met.
- Teachers are skilful in teaching sensitive and controversial topics
- Teachers provide a secure learning environment for all pupils
- Teachers use questioning effectively to challenge pupils, deepen thinking and support
- Teachers assess learning rigorously
- Teachers ensure all pupils are aware of how to improve as well as be recognised for their attainment
- Teachers embrace opportunities for pupils to learn from external speakers and organisations
As a school, we will ensure that pupils' needs, interests and aspirations are met.
Overarching concepts developed through the Programme of Study for Key Stage 2 and 3
1. Identity (their personal qualities, attitudes, skills, attributes and achievements and what influences these; understanding and maintaining boundaries around their personal privacy, including online)
2. Relationships (including different types and in different settings, including online)
3. A healthy (including physically, emotionally and socially), balanced lifestyle (including within relationships, work-life, exercise and rest, spending and saving and lifestyle choices)
4. Risk (identification, assessment and how to manage risk, rather than simply the avoidance of risk for self and others) and safety (including behaviour and strategies to employ in different settings, including online in an increasingly connected world
5. Diversity and equality (in all its forms, with due regard to the protected characteristics set out in the Equality Act 2010)
6. Rights (including the notion of universal human rights), responsibilities (including fairness and justice) and consent (in different contexts)
7. Change (as something to be managed) and resilience (the skills, strategies and ‘inner resources’ we can draw on when faced with challenging change or circumstance)
8. Power (how it is used and encountered in a variety of contexts including online; how it manifests through behaviours including bullying, persuasion, coercion and how it can be challenged or managed through negotiation and ‘win-win’ outcomes)
9. Career (including enterprise, employability and economic understanding)
Schemes of work according to Year Group
Pupils begin their experience of our school by discussing the vocabulary of ‘Character’. They look at ‘Knightly Virtues’ listed in their planners and how this may impact upon various career and life choices.
PSHE is taught alongside Religious Education and Humanities subjects. As well as reflections upon Personal Development, in these lessons, there are separate units of work on the following topics:
Relationships and Sex Education
Online Safety (in conjunction with Computing)
Pupils begin their year with reflection upon the concept of ‘humanity’ and can reflect upon their personal values. As well as varied opportunities to consider matters of Personal Development and ‘Character’, there are distinct units of work on the following topics:
Mental Health and wellbeing
Drugs and Alcohol Education
Bullying and discrimination
Key Stage Three (Year 7 and 8)
Pupils are provided with weekly PSHCE lessons. The first 15 minutes of each lesson is an opportunity for pupils to reflect upon their Personal Development and ‘Character’.
Units of work consist of clearly structured, progressive teaching, taking place over the course of 3-6 weeks per unit. Other topics of significance are considered according to the needs of pupils following teacher assessment and evaluation of the cohort. For example, ‘Anti-Bullying Week’ activities and the discussion of contemporary global issues.
As well as the above, the following topics are considered as distinct units of work:
Identity and self-esteem- YEAR 7
Alcohol Education- YEAR 7
Gambling Education- YEAR 8
Hate Crime and Discrimination- YEAR 7
Mental Health- YEAR 7 AND YEAR 8 IN L4L
Bullying and cyberbullying- YEAR 7
Relationships and Sex Education- YEAR 7 AND YEAR 8
Online Safety- YEAR 7 IN COMPUTING AND YEAR 8 IN PSHE/COMPUTING
Anti-Fraud Education- YEAR 8
Staying Safe (Risky Situations)- YEAR 8
The majority of the 'Living in the Wider World' aspects of the curriculum is taught through drop-down activities and through humanities (Year 7) and Learning for Life (Year 8)
As mentioned above the impact of our curriculum can be seen in the behaviours and attitudes of our pupils in school, the community and in later life. Pupils communicate well with each other, their teachers and visitors. They demonstrate high levels of self-awareness, motivation and self control. We are exceptionally proud of the young people they become.