Just 5 terms to go ... are you taking positive steps?

8th January, 2019

Many schools acknowledge their PSHE and RSE curriculums are not as effective as they would like them to be. The exciting news that these subjects are being made compulsory in all schools from September 2020 is that schools have been tasked to teach them effectively, and will need to assess the learning as robustly as with other curriculum subjects to ensure a positive impact on pupil health and wellbeing is being achieved. The new guidance promotes evidence-based approaches, based on best-practice. Whilst schools will welcome this move it does also present very real challenges. It is my pleasure to support schools to rise to the challenge!

In my work as a National PSE/RSE Adviser I have supported many schools and local authorities to embed an improved curriculum, using a whole school approach. Below I share what I know are the things to think about first in order to lay a fundamental foundation for improving the provision in your school.

1)  Identify your starting point

Complete the free online RSE self-assessment to identify areas of good practice and areas for improvement in your schools. This will enable you to know what needs to be focused on, and plan appropriately for the improvements that need to be made.

2)  Get explicit SLT commitment

Identify a link governor who understands their legal obligations (training course can be booked here); Add ‘Preparing for the new statutory curriculum subjects’ to your school improvement and development plan. Identify a PSHE/RSE Lead who has recently received training, and has allocated time to fulfil their role.  

3)  Don’t do it alone!

Create a task group. This can include a member of SLT, link governor, PSHE Lead, parent and where appropriate representation from pupils.

4)  Conduct a staff skills audit

Even taking 5 minutes at the beginning of a staff meeting to ask staff if they have had any formal training to deliver RSE in the last 3 years will tell you if it’s time to invest in staff training.

5)  Review your resources

Do your resources feel fit for the 21st Century and relevant to all pupils? If not, have a look at our gold-standard, best-practice RSE Solution teaching resource.

I look forward to sharing my next steps next term, but in the meantime look at the high-quality, affordable courses on offer. Places are filling fast, so book yours now to secure your preferred dates and times.


About our RSE Expert

Josie Rayner-Wells is an experienced Relationships and Sex Education Adviser and Trainer for the education and health sector. She works as an Associate for the national Sex Education Forum writing resources, tools and training courses. She is currently working on the national DfE and GEO pilot programme ‘Learn Equality, Live Equal’ supporting schools to create a whole school approach to addressing homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in schools. Additionally she delivers a variety of training courses nationally including Comic Relief funded ‘Outside the Box’, a sex and relationships intervention programme for young people at risk of Child Sexual Exploitation. Josie has written a comprehensive RSE Solution resource for schools, covering guidance, curriculum and resources to cover all key stages.

“A very knowledgeable tutor who helped me understand the subject and how to teach it” - Teacher

“Excellent training. I feel like I can now go away and improve our provision and opportunities for our children” – Headteacher

Find out about how we can support your PSHE programme and our RSE Solution here

Check out our upcoming courses here.


We value your feedback, please do get in touch

I am Interested In