Sex and Relationships Education

1) Introduction

The Sex and Relationships Education Policy has been developed in accordance with the current requirements of the law, taking into account the Children Act and the various Education Acts.

Definition of Sex and Relationship Education

Sex and Relationship Education (SRE) is an educational entitlement for all children and young people. It is lifelong learning about physical, moral and emotional development and sex, sexuality and sexual health. It enhances the self-worth and confidence of each individual and encourages mutually respectful relationships and empathy for others. It has three main elements:

Attitudes and values

  • Recognition of the value of family life, marriage, stable and loving relationships for the nuture of children
  • Respect for self and others
  • Exploration of moral dilemmas
  • Develpment of critical thinking

Personal and social skills

  • Self-confidence, self-esteem and empathy for others
  • Managing emotions and relationships confidently and sensitively
  • Skills of choice to manage responsibility

Knowledge and understanding

  • Emotions and relationships
  • Physical development
  • Sexuality, reproduction, sexual health
  • Information on local and national contraception and sexual health services
  • Reasons for delaying sexual activity
  • The avoidance of unplanned pregnancy

The college provides a a setting in which students can be offered appropriate teaching about Sex and Relationships Education. The purpose of SRE is to assist children and young people to prepare for adult life by supporting them through their physical, emotional and moral development and helping them to understand themselves, respect others and form and sustain healthy relationships. SRE is supported by the college’s Values Education curriculum and is inclusive of all students to ensure that they:

  • Receive their sex education in the wider context of relationships
  • Are prepared for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of life
  • Develop positive attitudes to sexuality

Sex Education at QEHC is taught across all year groups as part of the discrete curriculum of PSHE. Content is also delivered as part of the Key Stage 3 Science curriculum. The programme is designed to support and complement the role of parents who have the prime
responsibility in this sensitive area. The content is taught within the moral framework and ethos of the QEHC’s principles.

2) Summary of Programme Content

The main aims of the Sex and Relationships education programme are
primarily to appreciate the values of family life and to promote the benefits of
family life. Students are encouraged to recognise the responsibilities of
parenthood and to respect themselves and others. Students are educated in
the importance of behaving responsibly and respectfully in sexual matters.

Moral and ethical issues are presented and discussed. The programme looks at the biology of sexual maturation, focusing on the physical and emotional changes associated with puberty as well as the related issues of personal hygiene.

Students receive information about sexually transmitted infections including HIV and AIDS and the importance of practising safe sex. Students receive
information about contraception and its importance in guarding against
unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. The programme
covers the legal implications of sexual behaviour. Students are made aware of people and places they can go to for appropriate help or advice.

3) Partnership with parents/carers

Most of a student’s informal sex and relationship education occurs within the
family and QEHC’s programme will compliment and build on this in
cooperation with homes.

Parents have the right to withdraw their child(ren) from all or part of the Sex and Relationships Education programme that is not included in the Programme of Study for the Science National Curriculum. Any parent wishing to withdraw a child from the programme should inform the Headteacher in writing of their decision. Students who are withdrawn will be accommodated separately and will be set appropriate, alternative work to complete.

4) Information on Contraceptives
The teaching about contraception should be carried out in a frank and open
manner with students being given non-biased information about various forms
of contraception. Staff do not give advice to individuals – advice can only be
given through the appropriate external agency.

5) Confidentiality and Child Protection

All staff members and external visitors who work with our students will be given a copy of this policy and our Child Protection Policy.

The Child Protection Officer (CPO) will have a discussion with any health professional or other adult before they start work with our students. This is to ensure they are familiar with our policy and expectations regarding correct practice and responding to issues, including those that may relate to Child Protection Matters.

Staff should ensure that students understand that they are not in a position to
guarantee confidentiality. Staff should ensure they are fully aware of QEHC’s procedures in dealing with Child Protection issues.

6) Equal Opportunities

Sex and relationships Education will be delivered equally to both genders,
normally in mixed classes. There are, however, certain topics that may be
delivered in single sex groupings e.g. Menstruation and Personal Hygiene.

7) Topics delivered through the Sex and Relationships Education

Programme

The Key Stage 3 National Curriculum for Science in Year 7 looks at the

physical and emotional changes that take place during adolescence as well as the biology of human reproduction which includes the study of the menstrual cycle and the process of fertilisation.

In Year 9 the science curriculum covers the growth and reproduction of bacteria and how the spread of viruses can affect human health.

In year 10 the Science Programme of Study may include the knowledge and
understanding of the effect of sex hormones and how sex is determined in
humans. The medical use of hormones to control and promote fertility is
discussed.

The PSHE programme will include the following topics within each
year group:

  • Year 7 Puberty and Menstruation; Personal Hygiene
  • Year 8 Relationships, the family, sexual relationships, the legal
  • implications and the practise of safe sex
  • Year 9 Contraception and sexual relationships. Sexually transmitted infections
  • Year 10 Testicular cancer, ovarian cancer, cervical cancer and breast cancer and the importance of health screening
  • Year 11 Abortion and the termination of pregnancy; the ethics surrounding these issues
  • Sexuality and family life. The issues involved in parenthood.
  • The ethics of sexual behaviour

8) Methodology and Approach, including explicitness and delivery of controversial topics:

Staff should make it explicit that lessons will cover essential knowledge as well as the opportunity for reflection and discussion. It is important that teachers can present the course information with a sense of openness but that the opportunity for students to ask questions is there.

Questions about individual contraceptive advice cannot be dealt with by
QEHC teaching staff. Information can only be given by the relevant external
agency. Staff should try to respond to students’ questions providing that answers are framed in terms of the promotion of family values.

9) Inclusion statement

In QEHC we have a commitment to ensure that our programmer is
relevant to all students and is taught in a way that is age and stage appropriate.

10) Evaluation, assessment and reporting to parents

Evaluation and assessment including self-assessment are an integral part of
SRE. A comment on a student’s progress in SRE will be included in our
reporting on PSHE to parents/carers.

To see the PDF version of this document, please click here.

Date: 3rd July 2013

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