PSHE at Rowan High School…

Rowan High School is a school specifically for children who have autism and sometimes other additional needs. Research shows that mental health illnesses are more likely to occur with people on the autism spectrum compared to those in the general population. Unfortunately the mental health of ASD people is frequently discounted. The most common mental health difficulties which ASD people suffer from are anxiety, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder. (NAS, 2020). There is a growing body of research indicating that pupils whom are emotionally healthy perform well academically.  

PSHE education helps pupils to achieve their potential by supporting their wellbeing and tackling issues which affect their ability to learn, such as unhealthy relationships, depression and anxiety. The PSHE curriculum at Rowan High consists of three major topics; health and wellbeing, living in the wider world and Relationships.  

The rational for the curriculum is therefore to ensure that pupils of all abilities are able to access and engage with a broad range lessons and activities which will give them knowledge of living in the wider world and the understanding of problems one can face in terms of relationships and their health and wellbeing. It is imperative that our students all receive a broad and varied curriculum which allows pupils to develop skills and aptitudes – like teamwork, communication, and resilience – which are crucial to navigating the challenges and opportunities of the modern world, and are increasingly valued by employers. 

If you have any further questions please direct them to Mr Chailton at school who will be happy to help.

Intent

The PSHE curriculum which is taught in Rowan High is planned to ensure consistency and continuity for our students. Therefore, each year group takes part in the same topic headings at the same time throughout their time with us.   

Our intent is to deliver a coherent curriculum which is equips our students with the knowledge and understanding of the wider world and prepares them for life outside of education. Due to the variant needs of the students Rowan High caters for, subjects must be visually engaging and differentiated in order for all of our students to achieve success.  

The students are Rowan High often struggle to understand and communicate their emotions. Therefore, emotional health and wellbeing is something which is celebrated without our community. Our intent is to allow our students to express themselves and understand that mental health is highly important topic which a person should feel free to talk about. Our aim is to give our students at Rowan High a safe and supportive learning environment. Students are encouraged to ask questions and are given the support they need to develop the confidence to challenge information, express their views and opinions. Our intent is for students to put what they have learnt into practice in the outside world. 

Implementation

Our PSHE curriculum works on a rolling programme and the three topics taught within the subject are all revisited within each academic year. This allows for formative assessment to take place and ensures that our students are given to the opportunity to address any misconceptions.  

PSHE is taught to all students regularly on a weekly basis. This ensures that our students all participate in comprehensive topics which will be beneficial in the future. This sequence alters during key stage four where students then alternate termly with RE, meaning that our year 10 and 11 students complete three terms of PSHE each year. 

Our cohesive curriculum ensures that our students understand the importance of PSHE thus the importance of health and wellbeing, relationships and living in the wilder world. The consistency of our regular lessons also helps our students who we know value continuity and structure. 

As well as the structured weekly PSHE lessons our students also have opportunities throughout the year to participate in various drop downs days where targets from the PSHE are often meet such as mental health awareness day and stay safe day.  

The PSHE curriculum is carefully structured to allow pupils to continuously build upon skills and knowledge that they have already obtained. The structure and content of the curriculum allows our students to gain further understanding of the outside world in preparation for life outside of education.  

On site we have a specialised PSHE teacher who attends CPD courses throughout each academic year. The students are Rowan High value consistency and therefore benefit from the regular member of staff teaching the subject.  

Impact

Our PSHE curriculum not only aims to prepare our students for their life at present, in the near future and their adult lives but also aims to have a positive impact of academic attainment. The topics and teaching style used across the subject allow are students to develop opinions and the confidence to share them. We believe that PSHE can help develop skills and attributes such as confidence and positive risk taking, which enable young people to excel.  

At Rowan High we strongly believe that PSHE can help our students to develop the knowledge and skills which they need to be safe and healthy in modern Britain during their educational years as well as employment in adult life.  

There is an emphasis on emotional wellbeing taught throughout the curriculum which supports our pupils understanding of emotions allowing them to commutate how they are feeling. 

Curriculum Overview at Key Stage 3 and 4

Year 7:

Students in year 7 begin with a topic on transition. Students will discuss their transition to Rowan High and how this change can impact their emotions. Healthy routines will be discussed and the cohort should gain understanding of how to control our emotions and techniques which can help regulate emotions. Throughout the academic year, our year 7 students will also discuss teamwork, diversity, relationships and healthy routines.  

Year 8:

During year 8 students will complete a topic on drugs and alcohol, this topic will make connections to the laws we have in the UK and the risks and harm linked to illegal substances. Students will gain understanding our emotional wellbeing and the importance of looking after our mental health. Throughout the year students will complete topics on community, careers, discrimination and identity. 

Year 9:

During year 9 students will continue studying the three main themes of PSHE which are health and wellbeing, living in the wider world and relationships. Students will discuss peer influence, substance use, and gangs as well as completing a topic on goal setting – During this topic students will think about their strengths and their career options/ambitions.  

Year 10:

Students in year 10 will begin with completing a topic on mental health with a focus on how to safeguard our own mental health. We will discuss the stigma around this and revisit techniques to keep ourselves healthy. Throughout the year students will also look at relationships and gain understand of the difference between healthy and unhealthy relationships. Also, students in year 10 will being to look at careers which interest them with hope of work experience being arranged.

Year 11:

During year 11 students will begin by with the topic living in the wider world, out year 11’s will discuss self-efficiency, stress management and future opportunities. Throughout the year students will also discuss how communication is an importance aspect of relationships and complete a topic of sexual health. Toward the end of the year students will look at the application process which is involved when thinking about a career and or further education.  

 

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