Relationships and Sex Education
Relationships Education, Sex Education and Health Education at Dogsthorpe Academy
The opening paragraph of the Department for Education guidance states: “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.” (DfE, 2019, Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education and Health Education)
What must primary schools teach in Relationships Education, Health Education and Sex Education?
From September 2020, Relationships and Health Education are compulsory in all primary schools in England. For primary aged children this includes curriculum content under two headings (DfE 2019):
Relationships Education and Health Education
Relationships Education includes Families and people who care for me, Caring Friendships, Respectful Relationships, Online Relationships, Being safe
Health Education includes Mental wellbeing, Health and prevention, Basic first aid, Internet safety and harms, Physical health and fitness, Healthy Eating, Changing adolescent body, Drugs, alcohol and tobacco
This DfE guidance clearly states the statutory requirements, i.e. what children MUST be taught by the end of primary school. Health Education includes learning about ‘the changing adolescent body’ to equip children to understand and cope with puberty. The National Curriculum for Science (also a compulsory subject), includes learning the correct names for the main external body parts, learning about the human body as it grows from birth to old age and reproduction in some plants and animals. (which could include human beings). So, Relationships Education, Health Education and Science are compulsory subjects and parents/carers do NOT have the right to withdraw their children from these subjects.
Health Education lessons, as part of PSHE, include the teaching of puberty. It is statutory that these lessons are included in our age-appropriate curriculum. We will, as it is preferred by members of the community, separate boys and girls, to learn about the bodily changes and the onset of puberty. This will include naming body parts, the physical changes that take place and the emotional impact this has on the individual. We will inform you of when these lessons will take place to enable you to discuss these matters with your child, either before or after the lesson, should you wish.
As it is your right to withdraw your child from sex education lessons, should you wish to, we will inform you exactly when these lessons will be taking place, so that you can pick up your child earlier in the afternoon. This is your parental right.
The DfE recommends, ‘that all primary schools should have a Sex Education programme tailored to the age and the physical and emotional maturity of the pupils.’ The school will share its position on teaching Sex Education with parents/carers through its policy, and if relevant will make clear which lessons they can request their child is withdrawn from, i.e. which lessons constitute this additional Sex Education, if any.
The Jigsaw PSHE Programme includes lessons on ALL aspects of compulsory Relationships and Health Education, designed in a sensitive, spiral, age-appropriate curriculum. It also has a few lessons on human reproduction in Key Stage 2 to ensure children know the accurate facts concerning this before going to secondary school, and to ensure children understand why the body changes in adolescence.
Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any further questions.
Please see below for the Relationships and Sex Education Policy