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Relationships & Sexual Health Policy

The Aims of Relationships and Sexual Health Education (RSHE) Policy are to:

  • ensure that the teaching of RSHE is consistent with the school’s mission statement.
  • provide a safe and inclusive environment for the teaching and learning of RSHE.
  • ensure that students respect themselves and others.
  • promote the appreciation and development of attitudes and values which are truly gospel inspired.
  • ensure that students understand human sexuality and to correct misinformation.
  • inform our students of the teachings of the Catholic Church so they can have informed consciences and make the right decisions about relationships and behaviour.
  • enable the students to develop personal and social skills so they are confident in choosing right relationships, are safe from harm, protected from exploitation and know their rights.
  • enable students to be aware of their sexuality and to accept those who have a different sexual orientation.
  • enable students to challenge peer, social and media pressures around the issues of sexual intercourse.
  • inform the students that all life is sacred as it is a gift from God.
  • develop in students an understanding that sexual intercourse should take place in a stable and loving relationship, ideally marriage.
  • develop in students an understanding of the importance of marriage for family life.

 

How the Aims will be achieved

The Needs of Students

The RSHE Programme is tailored to the age, physical and emotional maturity, gender, cultural and social needs of the students.

The particular needs of our students are:

  • To promote respect for themselves and others.
  • To promote self control
  • To combat homophobia and stereotypes.
  • To combat inappropriate physical contact and negative peer-group pressure.
  • To be healthy, safe and to feel valued.

 

Teaching and Learning Styles

Teaching methods take into account the differing needs of students and include a variety of styles and approaches.

 

Content

 

Curriculum content supports the learning objectives set out in the schemes of work. The schemes of work ensure that content and learning objectives are developmental. Each teacher will establish a set of ground rules for RSHE with every class. These will be revisited at the beginning of every lesson.

 

Continuous Professional Development and Training

 

R Priestley as PSHCE Coordinator attends necessary meetings and training, and then members of staff teaching PSHCE attend in-house INSET so information is cascaded to ensure content of lessons is up to date and relevant to students needs.

 

The Use of External Support

 

Members of the Kirklees School Improvement team are regularly consulted, they visit school and organise training within the school. The School nurse’s contribution includes policy development, planning and delivery alongside teaching staff. A ‘Drop-In’ service for students is being established so that they are able to access expert advice and information on health related issues. The School Nurse is bound by his/her professional code of conduct which expects them to maintain confidentiality if the student is within the Frazer Guidelines (with the support of other health professionals). An exception to this is issues of Child Protection. In this case the nurse must inform the School’s Child Protection Officer. The nurse supports the aims of the school and be aware of the Catholic values when speaking to students.

 

Monitoring and Evaluation

 

Teachers are observed teaching RSHE as part of their Continuous Professional Development by the Head of Department or a member of the Senior Leadership Team. Students complete evaluations after each unit of work. Teachers and visitors also complete evaluations on visits and activities. These are used to inform planning.

 

The Frazer Guidlines are as follows:

 


1. The young person understands the advice being given.
2. The young person cannot be convinced to involve parents/carers or allow the medical practitioner to do so on their behalf.
3. It is likely that the young person will begin or continue having intercourse with or without treatment/contraception.
4. Unless he or she receives treatment/contraception their physical or mental health (or both) is likely to suffer.
5. The young person’s best interests require contraceptive advice, treatment or supplies to be given without parental consent.
Source of information: Torbay Fraser Guidelines.pdf

 

 

Confidentiality, Partnership and Trust

All Governors, teachers, support staff, School Nurses, the clergy, other external agencies, parents or guardians must be made aware of this policy.  All adults working within and in partnership with All Saints Catholic College must work consistently to uphold the values of the school and to offer advice and guidance that supports these values. All staff in the school must know the Child Safeguarding procedures.

School staff must explain to students that they cannot always offer unconditional confidentiality. They will explain that in some circumstances they will have to inform others, such as parents, guardians or the Headteacher.

Students will always be informed first that such action is going to be taken. Where a member of staff or School Nurse is aware that a student may be at risk, it is important that:

 

  • Any Child Protection issues are addressed and the designated senior
  • member of staff is informed.
  • Wherever possible, the student is persuaded to talk to their carer.
  • The student receives counselling.
  • The student receives appropriate health advice.

 

 

Confidentiality Statement

Collins dictionary: ‘Confidentiality is the process of entrusting someone with another’s secrets.’

Pupils, in contact with pastoral staff and others, may make a disclosure which they may not have shared with parents. If the disclosure relates to ‘significant harm’ to a child, then it is absolutely necessary for the child to know that the member of staff has to share this information with the Child Protection co-ordinator and/or Headteacher.  Thereafter, a judgement would be made on whether to contact the Social Services child protection team. Parents would be contacted, provided they are not part of the disclosure.

 

Other disclosures, perhaps sexual in nature, would involve the member of staff persuading the young person to talk to their parents. Though this is nearly always successful, the member of staff, would have to bear in mind, that if the young person was judged competent by the Fraser Guidelines, that is, he/she fully understand the whole implications of his/her predicament and possible medical procedures, then parents have no right to the information disclosed by the young person, nor could they veto any treatment so prescribed. It would seem that the judgement the young person is competent according to Fraser Guidelines is usually taken by a doctor or similar professional.

 

The law, if it recognises the competence according to Fraser Guidelines of a young person, will be broken if a member of staff shares information with a parent. Furthermore, in terms of data protection, a member of staff, to whom the information is passed on, would be in breach of this act if this disclosed information was shared, given that the young person was competent according to Fraser Guidelines.

 

It would be possible for a young person to seek medical services during school time and attend a hospital or clinic. During the time off-site it would be recorded as a medical absence on the school register.

 

In summary, where a member of staff, usually a senior member of the pastoral team, finds out about a sexual crisis, for instance a pregnancy, the young person involved, for nearly all cases will agree for parents to be contacted or for parents to be informed by the member of staff. It may well be that in the future, a young person will quote the Fraser Guidelines and that will be a very difficult situation for the member of staff concerned.

 

Parental Right of Withdrawal

The school acknowledges the roles of parents/guardians as the first teachers of the child in Relationship and Sexual Health Education.

Parents have the right to withdraw their children from Relationship and Sexual Health Education (Education Act 1993), except for those elements which are required by the National Curriculum Science Orders. However parents should be aware of the late Cardinal Hume’s concerns on withdrawing students from RSHE lessons as it “might well remove possible means of correcting, or putting in perspective, the uncontrolled information circulating within peer groups”.

Parents/guardians wishing to withdraw their children from RSHE lessons are asked to notify the Headteacher in writing.

 

 

Management and Co-ordination

 

Management and co-ordination of Relationships and Sexual Health Education is the responsibility of the Head of PSHCE.

 

Responsibility for the RSHE Policy

 

The Headteacher takes overall responsibility for the policy and its implementation in school. This responsibility includes liaison with the Governing Body, parents/guardians and the Local Authority.