Personal & Social Education
Personal and Social Education (PSE) is designed to foster the physical, emotional, social and mental health and wellbeing of pupils, as well as maximising achievement and success. It is a key aspect of education for today and the years ahead.
The School is seeking to guide pupils towards:
- developing qualities of self-esteem
- informed decision making
- showing respect and care for others
- a commitment to learning for life
- a sense of belonging
- confidence in coping with life in a changing world
- knowing his or her rights and responsibilities as a citizen
In Senior School PSE is taught in House groups by the Head of House and in Transitus it is delivered by the Form Teacher. Throughout Transitus, SI, SII and SV all pupils receive one period per week of P.S.E., whilst in SIII it is delivered through weekly 30 minute sessions and in SIV there are two one hour blocks from August to October and from January to the February break. The curriculum is designed to cover personal, social, health and career education. Many topicswhich are covered in the early years are repeated at a later stage, in order to ensure that materialsare suited to the age of the pupils involved and that their needs are met as they gainexperience and maturity.
From SI to SVI pupils complete a profile each year in which they identify academic and non-academic targets for the year ahead. These are reviewed at key points during the year, especially on receipt of examination results and following the issuing of home reports. Pupils are encouraged to use the profiles to record achievements as well as to review performance. Study skills, exam and revision technique, and coping strategies are also refreshed before each annual exam diet.
The PSE curriculum for each year is detailed below:-
In Transitus the PSE programme is designed to support pupils at this key point of transition by equipping them with the necessary skills for independent learning and to keep themselves safe as they begin to gain more freedom. Topics covered include:
· Study Skills
· Safety in the home and on public transport
· Road safety
· Puberty including conception
· Personal Hygiene
· Diet and Fitness
· Friendships and Peer Pressure
· Rights and Responsibilities
· Drugs Education
In SI we aim to continue some of themes of the Transitus curriculum with a view to ensuring a smooth transition to Senior School. In the first lessons time is spent getting to know the Senior School Code of Conduct, considering various scenarios that could arise at Senior School and further developing the study skills unit in Transitus. Pupils are gradually introduced to several School Policies through topics relating to the fair treatment of others. Topics covered include:
· Study Skills and Organisation
· Internet Safety and Plagiarism
· Healthy Lifestyles
· Mental Health including Self Esteem
· Handling Prejudice and Discrimination
For much of SII the focus of PSE is on Career Education in preparation for the subject choice decisions which are made in February for SIII and SIV. In the first term pupils participate in the Real Game through which they experience the challenges of trying to manage a budget, plan their time and plan a holiday. Pupils learn that different jobs have different benefits and that working conditions such as pay, hours and holiday allocation can vary enormously. This project aims to teach pupils that:
· learning is on-going
· change is constant
· it is necessary to focus on the journey, access your allies and follow your heart
During the first term pupils also take part in Learning for Life; a national campaign through which they are asked to identify personal goals and the qualities they feel are important in life. This involves studying the qualities and achievements of someone they admire such as an Olympic athlete.
In the second term pupils carry out investigations into Careers they are interested in and find out which subjects are required for specific careers.
In Health education pupils learn about the law regarding alcohol and the risks involved in under-age drinking.
In Activities Week in June all SII pupils attend an outward bound course at the outdoor centre in Ardeonaig. Time is spent preparing for this course and reviewing the experience.
SIII marks the beginning of SQA examination courses and for this reason time is spent at the beginning of the year developing more effective study skills, learning about Mental Health issues and developing strategies for recognising and coping with stress. Later in the year, the focus is on sexual health and relationships, with a view to helping pupils make healthy choices and understand the importance of respect in relationships. Topics include:
· Study Skills day
· Sex and the Law
· Sex in the Media
· Pregnancy & Parenting
· Healthy Relationships
· Power in Relationships
In SIV the focus in the first term is largely on Substance Abuse, including the law, the effects of abuse and strategies for keeping safe. All pupils are asked to organise two days work shadowing in December and in the second term, time is spent on Career Education to prepare pupils to make subject choices for SV. Topics include:
· Work Shadowing
· Alcohol (2012-2013 only)
· Illegal Substances
· Mental Health (2012-2013 only)
· Subject choices in SV/SVI
· Course and Career Research
In SV the focus in the first term is largely on aspects of Citizenship and includes a series of moral and social issues. In the second term, as pupils again start to focus on subject choices, we return to Career education and allow pupils time to research further education opportunities and careers. This research is followed up in an individual interview which parents are invited to attend in the summer term. During Activities Week in June, all pupils are asked to organise a week of work experience or volunteering.
· Handling conflict
· Consumer Rights
· Road Safety
· Blood and Organ Donation
· Contraception and STIs
· Employment Trends
· Subject Choices
· Scottish/English universities
· CV writing
· Work Experience preparation
· Careers Forum
· Preparation for SVI and Leadership
In SVI a number of afternoons throughout the year are dedicated to PSE, although many other experiences outwith the classroom add to the personal and social development of students, including a variety of opportunities for developing leadership and team-working skills. All SVI students are Prefects and are encouraged to become Regents for SI pupils and to volunteer support in junior classes. In August all students attend a leadership weekend at the Ardeonaig outward bound centre and in January we hold a motivational Murder, Mystery weekend. Students are expected to work together to raise funds for their Yearbook including planning and coordinating events such as the annual Yearbook Show.
PSE sessions are delivered mostly by visiting speakers and topics may include:
· UCAS and Personal Statements
· Careers Forum
· Interview Skills
· Personal Finance and SAAS
· Health Education with visiting male & female GPs
· Mental Health
· Road Safety