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Relationships and Sex Education

What is Relationships and Sex Education (RSE)?

RSE is about the emotional, social and cultural development of pupils, and involves learning about relationships, sexual health, sexuality, healthy lifestyles, diversity and personal identity. RSE is not about the promotion of sexual activity.

The government recently changed the law around the statutory duty of schools and student’s legal entitlement to Relationships and Sex Education, as part of its review into relationships and sex education in England. It is a statutory requirement that all schools in England and Wales teach Relationships and Sex Education as a fundamental part of their curriculum.

As part of our Personal Development curriculum, we promote wellbeing and personal development through a comprehensive RSE education programme. RSE gives young people the knowledge, understanding, attitudes and practical skills to live safe, healthy and productive lives, meeting their full potential.

We believe that promoting the health and well-being of our pupils is an important part of their overall education. We believe that it is necessary for young people to learn about personal safety and relationships, in an age-relevant and age-appropriate way.

RSE at DTW provides an opportunity for all pupils to:

  • Learn about themselves and others;
  • Understand how to be safe and healthy, now and into their futures;
  • Understand how to manage their academic, personal and social lives in a positive way;
  • Learn about wellbeing and mental health;
  • Develop resilience;
  • Become equipped with the knowledge and capability to take care of themselves and know where to receive support if problems arise.

What do pupils learn about in RSE?

  • Different types of relationships, including friendships, family relationships, intimate relationships, dealing with strangers;
  • Their legal rights and responsibilities relating to the relationships with others, including relating to equality; consent and sexual harassment and forms of abuse;
  • How to recognise, understand and build healthy relationships, including self-respect and respect for others, commitment, boundaries, consent, and how to manage conflict
  • Healthy relationships and e-safety;
  • How to recognise unhealthy relationships, abuse and the law;
  • How relationships may affect health and wellbeing, including mental health;
  • Diversity and identity;
  • Factual knowledge around sex, sexual health, sexuality and identity.

For further information please see our Personal Development curriculum page 

Consultation with parents and carers

We are committed to working in partnership with parents and carers on Relationships and Sex Education by:
• Keeping the RSE consultation open for the academic year 2023-24,
• Writing to parents and carers informing them about our RSE curriculum, including giving details of what is being taught; guidance on how to support conversations around these topics at home
• Having our RSE curriculum available for viewing on the school website
• Having information available during open days and parents’ evenings to provide additional opportunities for parents and carers to discuss our RSE curriculum with us
• Encouraging parents and carers to contact school to discuss our RSE curriculum,
• Regular opportunities are also available for pupils to help inform our RSE curriculum, including through pupil voice/ leadership activities.
If you would like to discuss any parts of the RSE curriculum and make any suggestions for further improvements, then please do not hesitate to contact Mr Floweth – office@deantrustwigan.co.uk

Click here to see the RSE Curriculum Overview

Click here to download The Dean Trust Relationships and Sex Education Policy

Special Educational Needs 

We believe that RSE is a priority for all pupils, including students with SEN who have social, emotional and mental health needs and learning disabilities. We recognise that young people who with SEN can be particularly vulnerable members of society, as perpetrators often target the most vulnerable, who as a result may experience exploitation, abuse and bullying.

Our curriculum is designed to ensure that learners with SEN are supported to understand RSE in an age-appropriate way.

Parental Right To Withdraw

At DTW we understand the importance of educating pupils about sex, relationships and their health, for them to make responsible and well-informed decisions in their lives. The teaching of RSE and health education helps to prepare pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life. RSE supports the spiritual, moral, social, cultural, mental and physical development of students at school and in wider society. We have an obligation to provide pupils with high-quality, evidence and age-appropriate teaching of these subjects.

If you have any queries or questions relating to Relationships and Sex Education at Dean Trust Wigan you can contact office@deantrustwigan.co.uk

Relationships and Sex Education is part of all pupils’ education, and it is hoped that all will participate. However, the school acknowledges that, under the DFE Relationship & Sex Guidance for 2020, parents have the right to withdraw their children from all or part of the Sex Education programme, except for that part which occurs in the National Science Curriculum. Parents need to be aware, however, that Sex Education can occur at any time if it arises naturally from class discussion.

Parents wishing to exercise that right are asked to make an appointment to meet with the Subject Leader of PSHE to discuss their concerns and if necessary, school will make alternative arrangements.  Alternatively, parents can write to the Headteacher to request this, using the email above.

It should be noted that under the new guidance, a child can request to receive sex education three terms before the child turns 16.

Relationships and Sex Education Curriculum

Year 7

Module 3: Diversity – Why are our differences worth celebrating?

During the Relationships themed ‘Module 3: Why are our differences worth celebrating?’ pupils will contemplate their responsibilities as national and global citizens for the respect and celebration of diversity.  Pupils will recognise their individuality whilst understanding the need for respect and tolerance within the rule of law.  Pupils will be equipped with the tools to combat prejudice, discrimination and bullying behaviours

Module 5: Building relationships – How can I be happy in my relationships?

‘Module 5: How can I be happy in my relationships’ focuses on the skills needed by pupils to foster strong positive relationships with the people around them. They will develop their understanding of personal boundaries, abuse,  the impact of child on child  abuse as well as the role modern technology has in our relationships. There will be some discussion around romantic relationships, supporting a positive outlook towards things like consent, respect and understanding.

Year 8

Module 9: Discrimination – Why are these characteristics protected?

During the module ‘Why are these characteristics protected?’pupils will consider the 2010 Equality Act and the importance that it has in modern Britain. Pupils will consider why some groups need to be protected by considering the discrimination that they face, and the stereotypes that are constructed about them. This will help pupils understand the diverse world that they are part of and encourage global inclusivity by making them global citizens.

Module 11: Identity and relationships – What is the difference between sex, gender and sexuality?

During the module ‘What is the difference between sex, gender and sexuality?’ pupils will explore issues surrounding personal identity and how that affects relationships. This is important as modern understanding of gender and sexuality is evolving so pupils should be aware in order to promote equity and inclusivity. Pupils will also reinforce their understanding of the law regarding sexual relationships, including consent, in order to support and promote positive romantic relationships.

Year 9

Module 16: Respectful relationships – What responsibilities do we have within our relationships?

During the module ‘What responsibilities do we have within our relationship’ is a topic that reinforces previous learning on the development of positive relationships. In year 9, this will develop into assessing more intimate relationships. Pupils will discuss what a positive romantic relationship looks like, as well as managing expectations. Pupils will also address challenges that they may face in their life, such as relationship breakdown, and red flags, and how to manage them constructively. This should allow pupils to create a realistic understanding of romance, with a complete understanding of consent.

Module 18: Intimate relationships – What’s love got to do with it?

The module ‘What’s love got to do with it?’ focuses entirely on intimate relationships. This is part of Personal Development statutory learning and so it is essential that pupils understand this topic. This topic promotes good sexual health and hygiene, as well as the danger of Sexually Transmitted Infections and the importance of contraception/protection. Further still, pupils will consider the law on many aspects of sexual relationships such as FGM, consent, private photographs and sexual harassment in order to create a realistic and safe understanding of what goes into a healthy and equal romantic relationship.

Year 10

Module 19: Healthy relationships – How has the media ruined love?

During the module ‘How has the media ruined love?’ pupils will develop on previous modules on relationships by considering the role that media plays in our relationships – both intimate and platonic. New apps and social media have changed the way we interact so this topic will help pupils navigate the challenges that this presents. This will challenge negative expectations created by media and sexual imagery, as well as negative interpretations of groups (based on gender or sexuality). They will also consider what the law says regarding different aspects of romance/sex. This will help pupils to safeguard their own emotional, physical and mental wellbeing.

Year 11

Module 28: Communication and independence – Can you be an individual in a partnership?

The module ‘Can you be an individual in a partnership?’ explores the nature of communication and independence while in a romantic relationship. It will revisit topics like the importance of communicating consent, being assertive and what a positive relationship looks like but it will also develop ideas about nurturing independence while in a partnership to avoid dependence or exploitation. It will discuss complex and mature topics, such as the different forms that abuse may take, such as gaslighting and manipulation.

Module 29: Families – Is blood thicker than water?

The final Personal Development module (‘Is blood thicker than water?’)  will examine the role families have in our lives, as well as what goes into having a positive family relationship yourself. Different types of families will be discussed (including childless couples) as well as the decisions that go into starting a family.  This will build on existing ideas discussed such as the role of supportive parents but will go into greater detail about marriage, pregnancy and childcare, as well as the law’s attitude to things like forced marriage. This will support pupil’s understanding of what a positive family environment looks like, and help them in the future.

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