Message sent from:

PSHE at Culmstock


Our intent for ‘Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education’ is for our children to be healthy in body and mind, be resilient and responsible and ultimately confident members of society. We will support them to understand how they are developing personally and socially. It is our intent to provide our children with opportunities for them to fully engage and learn about rights and responsibilities and appreciate what it means to be a member of the diverse society in which we live, and to respect others as equals. We want to enable our children to make an active contribution to the wider community by helping them to manage their physical and emotional changes at puberty and equip them for life in our ever-changing world. We are aware of the way that PSHE supports many of the principles of safeguarding and links closely to schools Safeguarding and British Values Policies. Through the PSHE curriculum we recognise our duty to ‘actively promote’ and provide opportunity for children to understand the fundamental British Values (Democracy, The Rule of Law, Individual Liberty, Mutual Respect and Tolerance) first set out by the Government in the ‘Prevent’ strategy in 2014, for those with different faiths and beliefs in order for them to become fair, tolerant, respectful and confident adults in a forever challenging world.


We use the Kapow programme to deliver our PSHE lessons across the school; we follow a two year rolling programme across the school. Teachers have the flexibility to deliver lessons as a result of an issue arisen in their own class. Key vocabulary is identified and we work hard to ensure that words like ‘mental health’ and ‘bully’ are used in the correct context. 

We participate in national events e.g. anti-bullying week, Children in Need, Black Lives Matter, Mental Health Days, Comic Relief, Sport Relief, NSPCC and charity days. We have weekly assemblies where children’s moral, spiritual, social and cultural curiosity is stimulated, challenged and nurtured through the coverage of key events and National and Global News.

Children with additional PSHE needs have opportunities to engage in small group work with our school listener and where appropriate we use the Boxall Assessment Tool to support setting individual targets.

We provide resources and support for children who suffer loss or bereavement and work closely with other agencies.


Our children will demonstrate a healthy outlook towards school and attendance will be at least in line with national. Our delivery of PSHE will also impact on our children’s behaviour socially in the playground and as learners in the classroom. Through our RSE curriculum children will become confident individuals who have positive body awareness, an in depth knowledge of how to keep themselves safe and healthy and who will, through, respect, tolerance and understanding, forge and maintain positive relationships with a diverse range of family and friendship groups. They will grow up to be positive attributes to society.

The DfE specified as part of its National Curriculum guidance that ‘All schools should make provision for personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE), drawing on good practice’. The review also detailed:


“PSHE remains an important and necessary part of all pupils’ education. We believe that all schools should teach PSHE, drawing on good practice, and have outlined this expectation in the introduction to the new National Curriculum” (Written Ministerial Statement: Review of Personal, Social, Health and Economic education, March 2013).


Sex and Relationships Education at Culmstock Primary School

Information for parents and carers


What are the aims of Relationships Education, Sex Education and Health Education in the primary school?

The Department for Education guidance states: “Today’s children and young people are growing up in an increasingly complex world and living their lives seamlessly on and offline. This presents many positive and exciting opportunities, but also challenges and risks. In this environment, children and young people need to know how to be safe and healthy, and how to manage their academic, personal and social lives in a positive way.” (DfE, 2019, Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education and Health Education)

What must primary schools teach in Relationships Education, Health Education and Sex Education?

From September 2020, Relationships and Health Education are compulsory in all primary schools in England. For primary aged children this includes curriculum content under two headings (DfE 2019):

Relationships Education: families and people who care for me, caring friendships, respectful relationships, online relationships, being safe.

Health Education: mental wellbeing, internet safety and harms, physical health and fitness, healthy eating, drugs alcohol and tobacco, health and prevention, basic first aid, changing adolescent body.

Health Education (a compulsory subject) includes learning about ‘the changing adolescent body’ to equip children to understand and cope with puberty. The National Curriculum for Science (a compulsory subject), includes learning the correct names for the main external body parts, learning about the human body as it grows from birth to old age and reproduction in some plants and animals (which could include humans). Relationships Education, Health Education and Science are compulsory subjects and parents/carers do not have the right to withdraw their children from these subjects.

Sex Education

The DfE recommends, ‘that all primary schools should have a Sex Education programme tailored to the age and the physical and emotional maturity of the pupils.’ It is up to primary schools to determine what is meant by ‘Sex Education’. At primary school age, it is usually agreed to mean ‘human reproduction’ and can be taught within Science. However, some aspects are also taught within PSHE and parents/carers have the right to request their child is withdrawn from these specific lessons.

Our PSHE Programme includes lessons on all aspects of compulsory Relationships and Health Education, designed in a sensitive, spiral, age-appropriate curriculum. It also has a few lessons on human reproduction in Key Stage 2 to ensure children know the accurate facts concerning this before going to secondary school, and to ensure children understand why the body changes in adolescence.

At Culmstock, we have chosen to include the lessons on Sex Education within our PSHE curriculum to complement what is taught as part of compulsory Science lessons, as we believe this work is an important part of safeguarding children, providing them with the knowledge to empower them, helping them to stay safe and cope with puberty understanding why their bodies will change.

What will my child actually be taught about puberty and human reproduction?

Each year group will be taught appropriate to their age and developmental stage, building on the previous years’ learning. Please note: at no point will a child be taught something that is inappropriate; and if a question from a child arises and the teacher feels it would be inappropriate to answer, (for example, because of its mature or explicit nature), the child will be encouraged to ask his/her parents or carers at home. The question will not be answered to the child or class if it is outside the remit of that year group’s programme.

Children will be taught in age groups to ensure that age appropriate information is always taught.  For example: Year 3 will be taught together and Year 4 will be taught together.

Ages 3-5 Growing up: how we have changed since we were babies.

Ages 5-6 Boys’ and girls’ bodies; correct names for body parts.

Ages 6-7 Boys’ and girls’ bodies; body parts and respecting privacy (which parts of the body are private and why this is).

Ages 7-8 How babies grow and how boys’ and girls’ bodies change as they grow older. Introduction to puberty and menstruation.

Ages 8-9 Internal and external reproductive body parts. Recap about puberty and menstruation. Conception explained in simple terms.

Ages 9-10 Puberty for boys and girls in more detail including the social and emotional aspects of becoming an adolescent. Conception explained in simple biological terms.

Ages 10-11 Puberty for boys and girls revisited. Understanding conception to the birth of a baby. Becoming a teenager. All lessons are taught using correct terminology, child-friendly language and diagrams.

Why is this curriculum needed?

There are four main aims for teaching RSE within the context of Primary School PSHE (Personal, Social, Health Education):

• More than ever before, children are exposed to representations of sex and sexuality through the social culture around them. The unregulated content on the internet or social media, can mean children may be exposed to dangerous, confusing or scary content. We can prepare them for this by presenting a balanced view of positive healthy relationships to help them to be discerning and to stay safe.

• There is much independent research showing most parents and carers value the support of schools in providing Relationship and Sex Education for their children. Parents and schools want children to be safe and happy.

• A range of independent research consistently shows that effective Relationship Education delays first sexual experience and reduces risk-taking in young people.

• Surveys of children and young people, as well as Ofsted, have repeatedly said that Relationship and Sex Education tends to be “too little, too late and too biological”. This is one of the many reasons why the Department for Education made Relationships and Health Education compulsory in primary schools from September 2020, with an emphasis on Relationships Education.

How can I talk to my child about relationships, puberty and human reproduction?

 What children learn at school is only part of the curriculum, and children can continue to learn from you at home. For some parents/carers, it can feel totally natural to discuss relationships, puberty and human reproduction with their child, while for others it can seem uncomfortable. Either way, it is important to remember these key points:

• We all want children to be safe, healthy and happy.

• We need to consider their needs and the world they inhabit.

• We need to normalise talking about relationships, puberty and human reproduction to ensure children feel they can talk to parents/carers about any concerns or worries they may have.

• We may need to challenge our own ways of thinking about how we feel about relationships and sex education.

• We have choices. We can avoid talking about relationships and puberty or we can communicate openly and honestly with children.

Some tips for talking to your child:

• Be honest. If you don’t know the answer to a question, be honest and say so. Tell your child that you will need to find out and that you will get back to them with more soon.

• Remember that children are curious and want to know and understand. We tend to place our adult perspective on children’s questions and comments, when actually a child just wants (and needs) a very simple, age-appropriate, matter-offact answer. This answer will not involve an ‘adult’ understanding of a topic – it needs to be at a child’s level, with opportunity given for the child to be able to ask further questions if needed. Give yourself time to respond by asking something like, “What do you think that means?” or “Why do you ask?”

• Keep lines of communication open. Having an open and honest relationship with your child can really help make conversations easier, so make sure that you are always willing to talk when your child needs you; if you can’t, explain why and find another time when it is more mutually convenient.

• Use correct terminology. It helps that children aren’t confused by hints, euphemisms and innuendo; use correct terminology whenever you can, especially for body parts. This is hugely important for safeguarding too.

• Respond to what children say they need. Bear in mind that children’s lives today are very different from even five years ago. Therefore, the education they receive needs to reflect this. Research shows us that children want and need to understand relationships, puberty and human reproduction, and want to be able to talk with parents/carers about this when they have had lessons at school.

• Answer questions and don’t be afraid to say, ‘I really don’t know – let’s work it out or look it up together’. Have a phrase for awkward moments, such as, ‘That’s a good question, and let’s talk about it once we get home’.

• Always respond. If you don’t, they may think it is wrong to talk to you about relationships, puberty or human reproduction and as a result you may find your child clams up when you want to raise the subject, now or in the future.

• If it all feels too personal, try talking about people in books, films and favourite television programmes.

• Enjoy it. Laugh with each other!

• Work in partnership with the school

Hit enter to search