Learning and Life Skills – Department Intent
The intent of the Learning and Life Skills Department (LLS), which encompasses PSHE, Citizenship and Functional Skills (Literacy, Numeracy and Oracy), is to provide a curriculum programme that will contribute towards benefitting the students’ health, wellbeing and academic success.
The values and ethos of our school are central to our teaching of all the subjects that fall under the umbrella of the Learning and Life Skills Department. The subjects enable young people to acquire the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to play a full and active part in society as productive and engaged citizens. They are subjects that we regard as integral and invaluable.
Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education is a subject through which students develop the knowledge, skills and attributes they need to keep themselves healthy and safe, and prepare for life and work in modern Britain. Evidence shows that well-delivered PSHE programmes have an impact on both academic and non-academic outcomes for students, particularly the most vulnerable and disadvantaged. PSHE education is an important and necessary part of all students’ education. At Christ the King Catholic High School, we have tailored our PSHE programme to reflect the needs of our students. We enable students to develop a sound understanding of risk and increase the knowledge and skills necessary to make safe and informed decisions. Our PSHE Curriculum builds on the statutory content already outlined in the national curriculum.
|Health and Wellbeing||Relationships||Living in the Wider World|
Physical & Mental Wellbeing. Keeping Safe
|Healthy Relationships, Relationships & Sex Education
|Rights & Responsibilities Economic Wellbeing
Employability & Enterprise
Our aim is to develop:
- Responsible, respectful and active citizens who are able to play their part and become actively involved in public life as adults
- Students’ understanding of the fundamental British values
- Students’ character, a set of positive personal traits, dispositions and virtues that informs their motivation and guides their conduct so that they reflect wisely, learn eagerly, behave with integrity and cooperate consistently well with others
- Students’ confidence, resilience and knowledge so that they can keep themselves mentally healthy
- Students’ understanding of how to keep physically healthy, eat healthily and maintain an active lifestyle, including giving ample opportunities for students to be active during the school day and through extracurricular activities
- Students’ age-appropriate understanding of healthy relationships through appropriate relationships and sex education
As a whole school we consistently promote the extensive personal development of all students. We provide students with access to a wide, rich set of experiences outside the classroom which provides opportunities for students to develop their talents and interests in a range of social contexts. All Key Stage 3 students receive weekly PSHE lessons and we host four whole school Extended Learning Days each academic year. Workshops are set in accordance with the personal development programme, however specific workshops are identified closer to the day, taking into account the focused needs of the cohort at that point in time.
Citizenship allows students to consider how we live together in our communities and about how we ‘get on’ locally, nationally and globally. It is about ensuring that everyone has the knowledge and skills to understand, engage with and challenge the main pillars of our democratic society – politics, the economy and the law. Our aim through Citizenship is to develop well-informed, educated citizens with the confidence and appetite to take part in society; to question injustice and to drive change. An example of this at Christ the King is through our dedicated focus on charitable work which promotes a real understanding and empathy for people in real world situations, led by our committed and democratically elected Student Council. In addition, the school prayer includes a mantra for community cohesion with the line “As many hands build a house so many hearts make a school”. In essence, we believe that the best way to guarantee a brighter future for all is to create a society in which we all understand our rights and responsibilities and in which everyone is equipped, and ready, to play an active part.
The national curriculum for citizenship aims to ensure that all students:
- Acquire a sound knowledge and understanding of how the United Kingdom is governed, its political system and how citizens participate actively in its democratic systems of government
- Develop a sound knowledge and understanding of the role of law and the justice system in our society and how laws are shaped and enforced
- Develop an interest in, and commitment to, participation in volunteering as well as other forms of responsible activity, that they will take with them into adulthood
- Are equipped with the skills to think critically and debate political questions, to enable them to manage their money on a day-to-day basis, and plan for future financial needs.
Fundamental British Values
A key part of our plan is to ensure our students become valuable and fully rounded members of society who treat others with respect and tolerance, regardless of background. We aim to promote the basic British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance for those of different faiths and beliefs. This ensures young people understand the importance of respect and leave school fully prepared for life in modern Britain.
Examples of the understanding and knowledge students are expected to learn include:
- An understanding of how citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process
- An understanding that the freedom to hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law
- An acceptance that people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none) should be accepted and tolerated, and should not be the cause of prejudicial or discriminatory behaviour
- An understanding of the importance of identifying and combatting discrimination
At Christ the King, we strive to promote British values through:
Including in suitable parts of the curriculum – as age appropriate – material on the strengths, advantages and disadvantages of democracy, and how democracy and the law works in Britain, in contrast to other forms of government in other countries
- Ensuring all students within the school have a voice that is listened to, and demonstrate how democracy works by actively promoting democratic processes such as a student council whose members are voted for by the students
- Using opportunities such as general or local elections to hold mock elections to promote fundamental British values and provide students with the opportunity to learn how to argue and defend points of view
- Considering the role of extra-curricular activity, including any run directly by students, in promoting fundamental British values
The increased demands of learning in a secondary school make it difficult for some students to reach their full potential. Therefore, the Learning and Life Skills Department provide challenging and creative intervention for the students that will enhance their literacy, numeracy, and oracy skils. Without this additional support, students may struggle to access the curriculum and cope with the quantity and quality of reading and writing and increasing demands as they approach examinations.
Special Educational Needs and Disabilities [SEND]
PSHE and Health Education must be accessible for all students. This is particularly important when planning teaching for students with special educational needs and disabilities who represent a large minority of students. High quality teaching that is differentiated and personalised will be the starting point to ensure accessibility. Some students are more vulnerable to exploitation, bullying and other issues due to the nature of their SEND. In teaching PSHE/RSE, schools should ensure that all students understand the importance of equality and respect.