Sex and Relationship Education Policy
This Sex and Relationship Education (SRE) Policy is based on the DfES guidance Sex and Relationship Education Guidance (ref: DfES 0116/2000). In this document sex and relationship education is defined as lifelong learning about physical, moral and emotional development. It is about understanding the importance of marriage for family life, stable and loving relationships, respect, love and care. It is also about the teaching of sex, sexuality and sexual health. This policy should be read in conjunction with the PSHCE Curriculum Policy.
2.Aims and Objectives
Sex and relationship education at Tweendykes School is placed within a broad framework for personal, social and health education to be taught at all key stages. It aims to encourage students to:
develop confidence and make the most of their abilities;
prepare to play an active role as citizens;
develop a healthy, safer lifestyle;
develop good relationships; and
respect differences between people.
At Tweendykes School particular emphasis is placed on:
providing knowledge and information to which all students are entitled;
clarifying and reinforcing knowledge pupils have already acquired;
raising the students’ self esteem and confidence, especially in their relationships with others;
helping pupils to understand their sexual feelings and behaviour in public and private situations;
reducing the risk of exploitation, misunderstanding and abuse, enhancing the pupil’s ability to stay safe through skill acquisition; and
supporting access to information and facilities.
Sex and Relationship Education is taught in the context of the school’s aims and values framework. While sex and relationship education in our school means that we give children information about sexual behaviour, we do this with an awareness of the moral code and values that underpin all our work in school. In school there is an emphasis is on hygiene, communications, expressions of feeling, birth and bonding, roles and relationships, privacy and self – esteem, friendships, dignity, gender differences, body images and growing up.
At Tweendykes School personal, social and health education and citizenship, including sex and relationship education, is fully integrated into the school curriculum. The main teaching of sex and relationship education takes place in our science and personal, social, health and citizenship education (PSHCE) curriculum and in personal care routines.
In PSHCE we teach children about relationships, and we encourage children to discuss the issues. In science we teach about the parts of the body and how these work. At Tweendykes we teach the boys and girls separately that boys voices and bodies will change during puberty and we explain about menstruation for girls. Boys and girls have access to the same curriculum content. We encourage the children to ask for help if they need it.
How our policy is taught
At Key Stage 1 and 2 in Science pupils are taught about how humans, move, feed, grow and we also teach them about the main parts of the body. As part of the PHSCE curriculum there is a focus on hygiene, appropriate behaviour, body awareness, gender roles, friendships and privacy. Children learn to appreciate the differences between people and how to show respect for each other.
In Key Stages 3 in Science pupils are taught about life processes and the main stages of the human life cycle in greater depth, including changes during puberty. As part of the PHSCE curriculum we also focus on appropriate behaviour towards a variety of people, puberty, self esteem and safety, respect for own and other privacy.
In Key Stage 4 a more explicit programme of SRE is delivered to the pupils. It is taught discretely as part of the Science and PSHCE curricula which may be through a team teaching approach and generally takes place in mixed gender groups. Such lessons are given with due regard for the emotional and cognitive development of the children. If appropriate some children will access individual teaching sessions with a Nurse Specialist from the Learning Disabilities team, under the guidance of the class teacher.
In Key Stage 5 dedicated stand alone courses “All about me” are delivered annually by the Specialist School Nurse with SRE Lead. All students access this programme unless discussion with parents leads to a mutual decision to remove. Differentiation within the programme results in different and appropriate levels of student engagement as the programme progresses.
The three main elements, attitudes and values, personal and social skills, and knowledge and understanding are contained within the following areas of the curriculum:
- Body Parts
- Naming parts
- Differences between boys/girls
- Body Changes
- Menstruation (girls taught separate from boys)
- Sexual Behaviour
- Keeping Safe
- Private Parts
- Appropriate/Inappropriate behaviour
- Relationships/Friendships-teenage feelings, wishes and worries.
- Physical and emotional privacy
In Key Stage 5 the programme’s addresses the areas of:
- Getting to know you
- Family and friends
- Life cycles and change
- Body parts
- Appropriate touching
- Boundaries and assertiveness
- Sexual health
These areas will be continually reinforced; however, teachers must consider the conceptual development and understanding of the pupils and be flexible in meeting their differing needs.
Pupils are able to access information from the school nurse or a Nurse Specialist from the Learning Disabilities Team. Indeed, with parental permission, pupils can be referred to the CTLD Team for individual support sessions.
Resources used to deliver SRE are available for parents to view on request. They are held by the years 10/11 class teachers. The PSHCE subject leader will be responsible for monitoring resources and ordering new resources when needed.
- Sex Education and sexuality for very special people: Flo Longhorn
- Magnetic body board
- Health for life
- Videos: Growing up, Go for it-relationships, Watch over me
- Information Leaflets from FPA (Family Planning Association).
- Leaflets and packs held in T6F to support stand alone programmes
- Resources brought in by Specialist School Nurse with SRE Lead.
Additional materials and workshops are provided by the school nurse and CTLD team.
7. Roles and Responsibilities
The Subject Leader for Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education is Mrs. Shannon Gray (this role is currently under review).The Subject Leader for Science is Mrs Kath Goult.
The School Co-ordinator for the Healthy Schools Award is Mrs Berni Dobson.
It is the responsibility of the PSHCE subject leader:
to keep informed about developments in Sex and Relationship Education and to disseminate information to colleagues; and
to take the lead in policy development.
8. Child Protection and Confidentiality
Teachers will conduct sex and relationship education lessons in a sensitive manner and following the guidelines contained in the school Child Protection Policy. When embarking on lessons that contain sensitive or controversial issues teachers should establish ground rules with their teaching groups in order to avoid inappropriate questions or answers. If a child makes a reference to being involved, or likely to be involved in sexual activity, sexual or physical abuse, neglect or emotional abuse then the teacher will take the matter seriously and deal with it as a matter of child protection. If the teacher has concerns, they will draw their concerns to the attention of the Child Protection Coordinator and the Head Teacher. The Head Teacher and Child Protection Coordinator will then deal with the matter appropriately. (See also Child Protection Policy.)
At Tweendykes School staff have an awareness of these issues as they form part of the training on child protection (see Child Protection Policy). There is a great emphasis in teaching of Sex and Relationship Education in Key Stages 3 and 4 and 5 on the concept of ‘Keeping Safe’. T6F also run stand alone programmes on ‘Stranger Danger’. Some pupils however may require further advice on teenage pregnancy and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) that would be available from or signposted by the Nurse Specialist from the Community Team Learning Disabilities.
10 .The role of parents
The school is well aware that the primary role in children’s sex education lies with parents and carers. We wish to build a positive and supporting relationship with the parents of children at our school through mutual understanding, trust and co-operation. In promoting this objective we will:
send out letters to arrange a meeting for all parents and carers of children in Years 10 and 11 and T6F, prior to delivery of the SRE programme, to discuss the programme of lessons and inform them of their right to withdraw their child;
to obtain written consent from parents for pupils and students to attend SRE lessons and programmes;
consult with parents about the school’s Sex and Relationship Education policy and practise;
answer any questions that parents may have about the sex education of their child; and
invite parents to view any materials used during the teaching sessions.
In T6Fa parental programme called “Lets talk about sex” runs parallel to the student programme “All about me”, offering parents the opportunity to engage with the topics being delivered to students, and also offering the opportunity for parental education and support re. discussion SRE issues with their children.
Section 241 of the Education Act 1993 gives parents the right to withdraw their child from some aspects of the sex and relationship education programme. Parents may withdraw their child from parts of the personal, social and health education aspects of the sex education programme, however, elements that are taught within National Curriculum science remain compulsory. If a parent wishes their child to be withdrawn from sex education lessons, they should initially discuss this with the head teacher, making it clear which aspects of the programme they do not wish their child to participate in and then inform the school in writing of their intention. The DCSF offers a pack of information to parents who withdraw their children where appropriate.
12.The role of other agencies
Tweendykes School encourages other valued agencies to work with us to provide advice and support to the children with regard to health education. In particular, members of the Local Health Authority, such as the school nurse and other health professionals, give us valuable support with our sex education programme. Some pupils, where appropriate, are able to access private lessons with a Nurse from the Learning Disabilities team who has had specialised training in sex and relationship education. These adults may work under the supervision of the teachers and will be aware of the content of this policy.
SRE is assessed following the School’s guidelines in the Assessment policy. The children’s understanding of the programme is assessed by comparing their answers at the beginning and end of lessons and by asking them what they have learned. All pupils are continually assessed using B2 tools for assessing attainment.
14.Planning, Recording and Reporting
Planning, recording and reporting will be undertaken in accordance with the Science and PSHCE policies.
Subject leaders will monitor the delivery and content of the programme. Observations and action plan targets are fed back to the Head teacher and governors and are used to inform future planning.
The Governing Body has responsibility for monitoring and review of the SRE Policy and curriculum content. The policy is revised to take account of changes in government circulars, LEA statements and staff feedback. Comments from parents about SRE are considered and acted upon.
Young people with Learning Difficulties and Disabilities have the same right to education and information as other peers in order that they may be prepared for the responsibilities and experiences of adult life.
All practice and procedures will follow the guidelines as determined within the School’s Equal Opportunities Policy.
In general, SRE is delivered to class groups. Some issues around sexual health may be presented in a single sex environment, however, where single sex grouping occurs both groups are given access to the similar information. Some students with complex learning needs may be excluded from some aspects of the programme, however, all students will experience most of the basic content such as self awareness and gender awareness, body part recognition and privacy.
For the majority of students for the majority of the time, masturbation in school is not an issue.
Student masturbation is not an activity in school which is encouraged or condoned. However, due to the needs of pupils and students, it is not an activity which can simply be ‘banned’. This is a topic which needs to be handled with sensitivity in order to avoid embarrassment or stigmatism. It is an education issue.
Thus if masturbation becomes an issue:
- If the pupil or student has capacity, they are to be informed that this is an activity which should occur in private at home. Home to be contacted in order to help support their child.
- If the pupil or student does not have capacity, CTLD and home to be contacted in order to try to moderate behaviour – move the activity from school to home.
- If the pupil or students does not have capacity and the activity cannot be moved from school to home, distraction techniques to be used initially.
- If the pupil or students does not have capacity and distraction techniques do not work, student to be directed to use a private space. This to be done in consultation with parents, CTLD and Headteacher. School to monitor such activity closely. Parents are to be informed whenever the pupil or student does masturbate in school.
If masturbation in school becomes an issue of concern (for example, due to inappropriateness of setting or amount of time spent), boundaries to be put in place in liaison with parents, CTLD and Headteacher.
This policy will be reviewed by September 2015.
- Original Policy. February 2006
- Revised. November 2009
- Revised. April 2013