Review: Summer 2023
Our vision, ethos, values and Golden Rules.
Our vision is education in a caring, safe positive environment where all are welcome and valued. Pupils will enjoy life whilst flourishing and thriving academically, spiritually and personally. The school will foster a joy of learning, love for all, forgiveness and respect, creating strong life-long values. Children will know that they are loved by God and as part of the Valley Family.
At Valley End, our ethos are values are to: –
- Ensure that our school is a caring, trusting learning community that is underpinned by Christian values and beliefs.
- Welcome and be hospitable to children and their families from all faiths, backgrounds and beliefs.
- Provide active and enjoyable learning opportunities, through practical, collaborative and personalised learning.
- Achieve excellence by providing our children with a secure, safe, learning environment and the support to explore and grow in their knowledge of the world.
- Develop our children’s understanding of Christianity by establishing an ethos and curriculum that informs them that God is all around, loves them and wants them to be the best they can be.
- Equip our children with the skills, independence and values they need for lifelong learning and successful lives.
- Encourage children to develop enquiring minds, self-confidence and self-discipline, whilst being aware of and sensitive to the needs and feelings of others.
- Develop children as individuals and British citizens, who are tolerant, forgiving, and thoughtful towards others.
- Establish effective partnerships with parents to ensure the best learning outcomes for all pupils.
Our Golden Rules for the children are: –
- We love and care for each other.
- We always try hard to do our best.
- We are honest and always tell the truth.
- We look after property and God’s creation.
As a Church of England School, we also undertake to follow the principles in the Church of England Charter for faith sensitive and inclusive relationships education and health education (RHE). The Equalities Act 2010 www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents is also followed by the school. The school’s Safeguarding and Child Protection policy is consistently adhered to, put into practice and is a further framework that allows our pupils to have high levels of safety and welfare. Our Safeguarding and Child Protection policy can be found onthe school website.
The Intent of our Relationships and Health Education Curriculum.
We believe that to embrace the challenges of creating a happy and successful childhood and then maturing into adult life, pupils need knowledge and understanding that will enable them to make informed decisions about their wellbeing, health and relationships and to build their self-efficacy. We aim for our pupils to put this knowledge into practise as they develop the capacity to make sound decisions when facing risks, challenges and more complex contexts within life. Everyone faces difficult situations in their lives and our Relationships and Health Education teaching supports pupils to develop resilience, to know how and when to ask for help, and to how to ask and find age-appropriate support. As a school we aim to prepare pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences as they grow up and eventually mature into adult life, whilst also promoting their the spiritual, moral, social, cultural, mental and physical development. At Valley End we aim to teach from our Relationship and Health Education curriculum, using sensitive, sufficient, well-chosen and appropriate opportunities and contexts for pupils to embed new knowledge so that children can use it confidently in real life situations.
The focus is on teaching the fundamental building blocks and characteristics of positive relationships, with particular reference to friendships, family relationships, and relationships with other children and with adults. This starts with children being taught about what a relationship is, what friendship is, what family means and who the people are who can support them. Pupils are taught how to take turns, how to treat each other with kindness, consideration and respect, the importance of honesty and truthfulness, permission seeking and giving and the age-appropriate concept of personal privacy. Establishing personal space and boundaries, showing respect and understanding the differences between appropriate and inappropriate or unsafe physical, and other contact, is also taught within the curriculum again, in an age-appropriate way. This teaching links extremely well with our ethos, values and Golden Rules for the children, which provide a backdrop for all that we do as a school.
Children are taught about the features of healthy friendships, family relationships and other relationships which infant school children are likely to encounter. The aim is for children to form a strong early understanding of the features of relationships that are likely to lead to happiness and security. This will also help children to recognise any less positive relationships when they encounter them. Relationships Education also creates an opportunity to enable children to be taught about positive emotional and mental wellbeing, including how friendships can support mental wellbeing.
When teaching about relationships content, age-appropriate online safety and appropriate behaviour is taught in a way that is relevant to children’s lives.
Children are taught the age-appropriate knowledge they need to recognise and to report abuse. Children are taught how to report concerns and seek advice when they suspect or know that something is wrong. There is always a balance when teaching children about making sensible decisions to stay safe, including online, whilst being clear it is never the fault of a child who is abused. This essential teaching complements Health Education and strongly supports and links to the safeguarding of pupils.
Physical and Mental Health Education.
At Valley End we aim to teach children about age appropriate physical health and mental wellbeing in order to give them the information that they need to make good decisions about their own health and wellbeing. We believe that physical health and mental wellbeing are interlinked, and it is important that children understand that good physical health contributes to good mental wellbeing and vice versa. We aim to promote children’s self-control and ability to self-regulate, alongside strategies for doing so. This will enable children to become confident in their ability to achieve well and persevere even when they encounter setbacks or when their goals are distant, and to respond calmly and rationally to setbacks and challenges. This integrated, whole-school approach to the teaching and promotion of health and wellbeing will then have a positive impact on behaviour and attainment.
At Valley End, we promote strong relationships and living values that provide and encourage an atmosphere of openness. Children feel safe and know that they can speak to any member of staff should they need any help or advice. We also plan and provide very effective one-to-one and small group emotional well being sessions for pupils and these are led by the school’s Emotional Literacy Support Assistant (ELSA), overseen by the school’s SENDCO.
Children are taught about the benefits and importance of daily exercise, good nutrition and sufficient sleep, and given the language and knowledge to understand the normal range of emotions that everyone experiences. This then enables children to articulate how they are feeling, develop the language to talk about their bodies, health and emotions and judge whether what they are feeling and how they are behaving is appropriate and proportionate for the situations that they experience. Children are taught about the steps they can take to protect and support their own and others’ health and wellbeing, including simple self-care techniques, personal hygiene and prevention of health and wellbeing problems.
Children learn about the benefits of hobbies, interests and participation in their own communities. Children are taught to take opportunities to consider the needs of and to serve others with an understanding that these are beneficial for health and wellbeing.
At Valley End we also teach children about the benefits of rationing time spent online and the
risks of excessive use of electronic devices as well as age-appropriate E-safety and awareness.
Subject content and the implementation of Relationship and Health Education.
As a school we follow the Coram Life Education ‘Scarf’ schemes of work and lesson plans. These schemes of work and lesson plans are organised around the Personal Social Health Education (PSHE) Association’s Programmes of Study Learning Opportunities as well as the DfE’s Relationships Education and Health Education statutory guidance. They are also in-line with the Church of England Charter for faith, sensitive and inclusive relationships education and health education. Click here to view the Coram Life Education website.
Relationship and Health Education is taught across the school as part of weekly Personal, Social and Health Education lessons. These lessons are taught discretely as well as throughout the school day as different situations or issues arise or during collective worship/assembly times. Lessons are taught to all children within a classroom setting regardless of ability or any special educational needs of disability. Themes and teaching content are also adapted to the needs of individual pupils, classes or groups and when appropriate we work closely with parents on any particular teaching themes or areas.
Please see Appendix A and Appendix B for the details of the age appropriate teaching content for Relationship and Health Education for each year group. As a school we are confident that each of the different teaching areas and content are appropriate for each year group. We, do however, regularly review the content of the different teaching areas to ensure that they continue to be appropriate for our pupils.
Consultation and review.
This policy will be reviewed in one year by staff and governors in-line with DFE, national and Church of England guidance. Parents and carers will be informed annually about any changes to the school’s Relationship and Health Education curriculum. There is no right for parents to withdraw their children from this curriculum as infant schools only teach Relationships Education
Links to other policies:
Safeguarding and Child Protection
Teaching and Learning
Health and Safety
Drug and Alcohol
Loss and Bereavement