As you may be aware, Relationship Education will become statutory for all primary schools in Summer Term 2021. Here at St Teresa’s Catholic Primary School we have decided to call it a Relationship and Health Education. Our curriculum is based on ‘A Model Catholic RSE Curriculum’ by the Catholic Education Service, which was highlighted as a work of good practice by the Department of Education. Therefore, we have confidence that the programme will be fit for purpose in supporting the growth and development of your child.
We have linked the RHE curriculum to other curriculum areas, including Religious Education, Personal Social Health Emotional and Science and Physical Education. We use a variety of resources from various schemes including Come and See and Ten Ten Resources to support a progression in learning.
One of the most distinctive features of a Catholic Relationships Education programme is the emphasis on the vital role that parents have in nurturing their children on these matters.
We trust that parents who have sent their children to a Catholic school will be sympathetic to their school’s Catholic ethos. Just as the Catholic faith is central to Catholic schools, so it is within RHE curriculum.
Our Relationship and Health Education teaching is rooted in the Catholic Church’s teaching about what it is to be truly human in Christ, what it means to live well in relationship with others and be presented within a positive framework of Christian virtue. For this reason, we emphasise the importance of healthy relationships to human well-being, as the core learning within an RHE curriculum. This starts with self-awareness, an awareness of God and our relationship with him and with all mankind.
During the delivery of the RHE curriculum, we do introduce the correct terminology for external body parts such as penis, testicles, and vagina from KS1. In Year 5 the children learn about puberty and changing bodies. This links directly with the statutory requirements of the science curriculum.
Teaching about sexual intercourse to primary school children is not part of the statutory curriculum and is not part of our RHE curriculum. Governors have agreed to provide resources which parents may use with their children at home. We believe that this is best delivered to individuals at a time that is right for them. As the primary educators of their children, parents are best placed to tailor this to meet the needs of their child.
Parents do not have the right to remove their children from Relationships Education or Health Education lesson. Parents retain the right to withdraw children from ‘Sex Education’ lessons in primary schools, but this is not part of our curriculum so this is not applicable in our setting. However, it is very important to us that our curriculum reflects your views. The planned meeting in March was cancelled due to Covid. In the current situation it is still not possible to hold a meeting but it is possible to meet with a few parents. If you are interested in attending such a meeting please call the school office and leave your name. I will be in touch to make arrangements. In the meantime, I would be grateful if you could look through the RHE programme complete the online survey which will be shared through your child’s class dojo page.