Provide high quality, age appropriate sex and relationships education in all year groups.

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1 BLEAN PRIMARY SCHOOL POLICY FOR SEX and RELATIONSHIP EDUCATION (SRE) Introduction Our Sex and Relationships Education (hereafter referred to as SRE) policy is informed by our Science, PSHE and E-Safety policies, our Safeguarding and Child Protection Polices, Inset on Child Protection delivered to whole staff by the Headteacher and/or Deputy Headteacher and / or Assistant Headteacher annually, The National Curriculum 2014, Sex and Relationships Education Guidance to Schools (published by the DCSF 2010), The Current Status of Sex and Relationships Education (published by the PSHE education March 2011), Different Families, Same Love (published by Stonewall 2013), Sex and Relationships Education in Schools (published by Parliament January 2014) (NB this guidance from Parliament continues to reference the DCSF Sex and Relationships Guidance to Schools (see appendix) as the document that schools need to have regard to. ) research conducted by the Lucy Faithful foundation, Not Yet Good Enough PSHE in Primary and Secondary Schools (Ofsted May 2013), Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) for the 21 st Century (PSHE association 2015), SRE the Evidence (Briefing by Sexeducation.forum.org 2015) and Associations between source of information about sex and sexual health outcomes in Britain: findings from the third National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal-3). BMJ 2015) At Blean, SRE is a whole-school approach, and is taught in every year group (see appendix 1) through the statutory requirements of the National Curriculum for Science and our Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) lessons. Aims and Objectives: At Blean, we will: Provide high quality, age appropriate sex and relationships education in all year groups. Teach our pupils the age appropriate language for parts of the body, sex and relationships. Prepare our pupils for the physical and emotional changes that take place during puberty for both boys and girls. Teach our pupils how a baby is conceived and born. Teach our pupils about the value of family life (in all its forms) and stable relationships. Ensure that pupils know that casual (or otherwise) sexist or homophobic language is unacceptable. 1

2 Ensure that pupils have a clear and informed understanding of personal safety in Sex and Relationships. This includes: Ensuring pupils know how they can protect themselves and where to ask for help and support. Developing an awareness of sex abuse/exploitation, and what they should do if they are worried about any sexual matters. Teaching children (at an age appropriate point) the laws related to sex, consent and coercion. (NB Legally, the age of criminal responsibility in England is 10 years old, which makes children aged 10 and above responsible for their sexual conduct, but without necessarily having received any education or advice about the laws relating to sex, consent and coercion. The legal age of consent is 16. SRE The Evidence March 2015) Educating them about Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in an age appropriate way and at an age appropriate point. Helping children have the confidence and language to discuss matters to do with SRE that concern them. Enabling pupils to learn about safety and risk in relationships. Context While we place an emphasis on the emotional and physical changes that children will experience as part of puberty, we teach SRE in the context of loving family relationships. We teach it gradually, based on factually accurate, age appropriate information, which is built upon year-by-year. It promotes equality, inclusion and acceptance of diversity and promotes strong and stable relationships as well as teaching children about their rights and responsibilities in relation to sex and relationships (DCSF Sex and Education Guidance to Schools 2010). Our SRE teaching is set in the context of clear values, including the value of family life and of loving and stable relationships in bringing up children. It teaches children to develop values, attitudes, personal and social skills, and increase their knowledge and understanding to make informed decisions and life choices. This knowledge and understanding can play a crucial role in helping children be protected from exploitation. This context is stated with the understanding that nationally SRE in schools has had significantly damaging consequences for children and young people when the relationships element of SRE has been taught to the exclusion or near exclusion of factually accurate and informative sex education. (See Not Yet Good Enough SRE in Primary and Secondary Schools Ofsted 2013) Equal Opportunities Equal opportunities forms part of all our policies and it is directly relevant to SRE. We avoid stereotyping through gender, race, religious background, sexual orientation or disability. Our 2

3 SRE teaching is intended to be relevant to boys and girls, and to address diverse needs including culture, faith, disability and SEN and to be accessible to all pupils. The Importance of SRE in the Curriculum Every parent and every school wants to see children grow up safely and be able as an adult to enjoy the positive benefits of loving, rewarding and responsible relationships, to be informed, comfortable with the changes during puberty and emotionally supported. Parents play a vital role in providing the building blocks for healthy and fulfilling social and personal relationships while protecting their children and young people from harm. They should lead on instilling values, however schools have a clear role in giving young people accurate information and helping them to develop the skills they need to make safe and responsible choices. The document: Associations between source of information about sex and sexual health outcomes in Britain: findings from the third National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal-3). BMJ 2015) shows that individuals who had mainly learned about sex from school lessons were less likely to have had sexual intercourse before age 16, unsafe sex in the past year (defined as one or more new partner without using a condom), and to have ever been diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection (STI), compared with those who mainly learned from other sources. Women for whom school was their main source were also more likely to have been sexually competent (a term that means reliable method of contraception was used; and that the timing felt right; and that their decision to have sex was an autonomous one and that both partners were equally willing at first sex), and less likely to have had an abortion or experienced sex against their will, or to have felt distressed about their sex life in the past year. It is important that children start to build up the vocabulary and confidence to talk openly and positively about emotions, relationships and their bodies. Learning the words to describe feelings and emotions, the correct terms for parts of the body and developing health literacy is vital for children to stay safe and seek help if they feel at risk or are being harmed. Research conducted by the Lucy Faithful foundation (for more information see indicates that a failure to provide high quality age appropriate sex and relationships education may leave young people vulnerable to inappropriate sexual behaviours and exploitation, particularly if they are not taught the appropriate language, or have not developed the confidence to describe unwanted behaviours, do not know who to go to for help, or understand that sexual exploitation is wrong. In the 21 st Century, children and young people are also exposed to sexual imagery and content in a wide array of media including adverts, the internet, video games, mobile phones, pop songs, TV and magazines. These media often present a distorted and inaccurate view of sex and relationships. SRE equips children and young people with the values, skills and knowledge to understand and deal appropriately with these social and cultural pressures. School provides a safe place for children and young people to make sense of the information they have picked up from the media and also playground myths. Guided by a skilled teacher, children and young people are able to separate facts from fiction and clarify and strengthen their own values. Some children start puberty as young as eight years old. SRE prepares children for the physical and emotional changes of puberty. 3

4 In addition, the school curriculum has a role to play in reducing the likelihood of sexist, homophobic, or transphobic bullying occurring in part through addressing some of the underlying attitudes and values that underpin it. SRE within PSHE education is the most obvious location for specific coverage of issues relating to bullying and gender equality. Organisation All teachers share the responsibility for teaching SRE, although this is overseen by the PSHE coordinator and Headteacher. Other staff may be asked to assist, for example teaching assistants, and Inclusion Manager, as well as members of outside agencies, for example the school nurse. Staff are given access to training opportunities, as and when appropriate. We teach SRE through different aspects of the curriculum, mainly through PSHE and Science lessons, but also through other lessons, for example PE when we feel that they contribute significantly to a child s knowledge and understanding of their own body and how it is changing and developing. Our teaching aims to be: factually accurate, evidence-based and age-appropriate; be sensitive to faith and cultural perspectives; promote equality, inclusion and acceptance of diversity; promote strong and stable relationships; and provide children and young people with a clear sense of rights and responsibilities (DCSF Sex and Relationships Education Guidance to Schools (2010)) In PSHE, we teach children about relationships, parts of their body and how these work, and explain to them what will happen to their body during puberty. In Science /PSHE lessons, children learn about puberty and how a baby is born. We introduce the idea of SRE from early on, with children in Key Stage 1 learning about how animals, including humans, move, feed, grow and reproduce, and about main parts of the body (including the sexual organs). Children learn to appreciate the differences between people and how to show respect for each other. In Key Stage 2 we teach about the life processes and the main stages of the human life cycle in greater depth. By the end of Key Stage 2, we ensure both boys and girls know how babies are born, how their bodies change during puberty, what menstruation is and how it affects women, as well as other questions that may arise relating to puberty and the changes our children will experience. We also teach children (at an age appropriate point) the laws related to sex, consent and coercion. We reinforce the correct language and knowledge to do with our bodies and sex. In Key Stage 1 and 2, we teach children how they can protect themselves and where to ask for help and support and, in an age appropriate way, we develop an awareness of sex abuse/exploitation, and what children should do if they are worried about any sexual matters. Establishing Ground Rules for SRE 4

5 Our SRE lessons offer a safe learning environment, which supports the participation of all pupils. Establishing ground rules helps both pupils and teachers to have a clear understanding of personal boundaries. These ground rules can be developed as part of the school s sex and relationships education policy or individually with each class or year group, but will include rules such as: We will treat each other with respect. We will listen to each other. We will not make fun of each other s questions. We will aim to use proper words for body parts and sexual activity. No personal questions are asked of or comments made about pupils or staff. This helps to prevent unintended disclosures about personal experience. The classroom is not a confidential environment; the teacher is unable to maintain this if a safeguarding disclosure is made. But teachers will ensure that pupils are aware of where they can go if they need to discuss a personal matter. Sometimes individual pupils will ask questions and raise issues that are much more advanced than their peers. In this case the teacher can defer the question so that it can be answered in a small group or one to one or the teacher will explain that this is something that they will learn about as they get older. If the question raises cause for concern about safeguarding the teacher should discuss this with the school child protection officer in confidence to agree next steps. (Adapted from DCSF Guidance 2010). The Role of Parents We wish to build a positive and supporting relationship with the parents of children at our school, through mutual understanding, trust and cooperation. In promoting this objective we: Inform parents about the school s SRE policy and practice. Answer any questions that parents may have about the sex education of their child. Ensure that parents have access to the policy and are invited to view resources and schemes of work used in the delivery of SRE. Take seriously any issue that parents raise with teachers or governors about this policy or the arrangements for sex education in the school. Parents have the right to withdraw their child from all or part of the non-statutory SRE programme (i.e. not the Science Programme of Study) that we teach in our school. If a parent wishes their child to be withdrawn from sex education lessons, they should discuss it with the class teacher, and make it clear which aspects of the programme they do not wish their child to participate in. The Role of Pupils All our SRE lessons involve a discussion with children based on the questions they ask about the content that has been delivered by the teacher. Pupil self-evaluation of SRE lessons informs our practice in SRE as does the surveying of pupils to ensure that our stated aims are met. 5

6 Confidentiality/Safeguarding Teachers conduct SRE lessons in a sensitive manner. If a child makes a reference to being involved, or likely to be involved in sexual activity, then a teacher will take the matter seriously and deal with it as a matter of child protection. Teachers will respond in a similar way if a child indicates they may have been a victim of abuse. If the teacher has concerns, they will draw their concerns to the Designated Child Protection Coordinator (the headteacher). The Designated Child Protection Coordinator will then follow procedures as set out in our Safeguarding policy. The Role of the Headteacher It is the ultimate responsibility of the headteacher to ensure that both staff and parents are informed about our SRE policy, and that the policy is implemented effectively. It is also the headteacher s responsibility to ensure that members of staff are given sufficient training, so that they can teach effectively and handle any difficult issues with sensitivity. The headteacher also monitors the policy on a regular basis and reports to the governors, when requested, on the effectiveness of the policy. The Role of the SRE Coordinator It is the responsibility of the SRE coordinator to ensure that staff and parents are informed about our SRE policy, consult parents and pupils on the SRE policy, to write the SRE policy, review teaching materials and resources, to take feedback from colleagues and to support them in the delivery of SRE and ensure staff are kept up to date with developments in SRE education. Policy review date: Term Reviewer: Governing Body & Forum Head teacher: Chair of Governors: Mrs Lynn Lawrence Signature Mr H Samuelson Signature Date of Next Review: Term

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