Before you start

Relationships, [Sex] and Health Education across your school

For the senior leadership team

Principles: approach with humility and sensitivity, make no assumptions.

  • Are there any teachers for whom teaching this area of the curriculum would be inappropriate?
  • Any teachers for whom emotional and open discussions about relationships are difficult?
  • Any teachers who are recently bereaved?
  • Any teachers who are going through a recent significant relationship breakdown?
  • Are there any sensitive issues to do with individual pupils (e.g. safeguarding or family breakdown) that the teacher delivering RSHE may not be aware of and that they need to be informed of before the lessons take place (within the bounds of confidentiality and professionalism).

For individual teachers

Principles: approach with humility and sensitivity, make no assumptions, be informed.

It is important to think about or find out about the individuals in the group that you are about to teach.

  • What is the religious and cultural make up of this group? Are there any views you need to consider or research into before teaching RSHE? Will pupils all feel safe airing their views and experiences?
  • Are there any pupils in the group who have parents who have recently separated or divorced?
  • Are there pupils with same-sex or transgender parents?
  • To anyone’s knowledge, have any pupils in the group experienced any trauma that might affect their ability to participate easily in discussions about relationships.
  • What provision will you make for any SEND pupils in the group to ensure that the lessons are accessible and appropriate.
  • Are there any pupils who are transgender, non-binary or questioning? How will you ensure that the relationships education provided includes them?
  • Are there any ‘out’ gay or lesbian pupils, or those who may be, and how will lessons ensure that they are not excluded but are informed and engaged?
  • Are there any parents of pupils in this group who may have strong opinions? Can you anticipate any questions and be prepared with appropriate responses?
  • If a pupil were to make a disclosure because of the discussions in an RSHE lesson do you know how you would handle it and who the safeguarding lead is in your school should further action be appropriate?
  • What boundaries would you need to put in place to create a safe space for discussion? How would you handle a question from a child/young person that was inappropriate for the age of the other pupils?

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