St Mary's Catholic Primary School

Live, Love, Believe


Relationships and Health Education (RHE) and Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education are two separate curriculum subjects, one of which is a statutory part of the National Curriculum (RHE) and one which is not (PSHE). As both subjects are interlinked, they are sequenced under one curriculum overview; however, for clarity both subjects are referenced under individual headings.


Why do we study RHE?


Relationship and Health Education (RHE) became a statutory subject in all primary schools from September 2020. 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. The aim of RHE is to put in place the key building blocks of healthy, respectful relationships, focusing on family and friendships, in all contexts, including online. This will sit alongside the essential understanding of how to be healthy.


The National curriculum states the purpose of RHE is to:

Relationships Education: The focus in primary school should be on teaching the fundamental building blocks and characteristics of positive relationships, with particular reference to friendships, family relationships, and relationships with other children and with adults. This starts with pupils being taught about what a relationship is, what friendship is, what family means and who the people are who can support them. From the beginning of primary school, building on early education, pupils should be taught how to take turns, how to treat each other with kindness, consideration and respect, the importance of honesty and truthfulness, permission seeking and giving, and the concept of personal privacy. Establishing personal space and boundaries, showing respect and understanding the differences between appropriate and inappropriate or unsafe physical, and other, contact – these are the forerunners of teaching about consent.


At St Mary's, we have adopted the relationships and health education programme called "Life to the Full".  This is a comprehensive resource produced by Ten:Ten, a leading provider of faith-based resources for Catholic primary schools. 

There are 3 modules: 

Created and loved by God

Created to love others

Created to live in community


Each of the three modules is comprised of several units of work and covers Early Years, Key Stage 1 and lower and upper Key stage 2 and is taught at an age appropriate level throughout the school year.


Why do we study PSHE?

PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic) is a non-statutory subject, enabling schools to tailor their programme of study to meet the needs of their community. At St Mary's, PSHE is part of the weekly timetable and has a stong link to the United Nations rights of the child. It is a valued part of the whole school curriculum as it aims to equip pupils with a sound understanding of risk and with the knowledge and skills necessary to make safe and informed decisions. Within PSHE education, pupils develop the knowledge, skills and attributes they need to manage their lives, now and in the future and gain a deep understanding of their rights as a child. PSHE education helps pupils to stay healthy, safe and prepared for life and work in modern Britain. PSHE can also help pupils to achieve their academic potential as it develops confidence and self-esteem which increases pupil wellbeing. It helps pupils to develop the knowledge, skills and attributes they need to thrive, physically and emotionally to become healthy individuals, family members and members of society. By developing their knowledge on healthy relationships, pupils will be able to make informed decisions regarding the friendships and relationships they form within their lives. We use the SCARF framework for our PSHE lessons and tailor them to meet the needs of our children. We also use the United Nations Charter and articles to explain how children have rights and should have their views heard and understood. Please see blow the yearly overviews. 


Rights Respecting School

We strongly believe that pupil voice is a vital part of our school and that children should know that their thoughts and views will be heard. We are currently working towards gaining the Rights Respceting Schools award. We have a pupil working group (our EARA ambassadors) who promote the rights of children across the school. 



The documents below provides an overview of the units taught for PSHE and RHE and how this is set out alongside the UN rights for each year group. 


What is SMSC? 

SMSC stands for Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural learning. All schools in England must show how well their pupils develop in SMSC. This work also relates to Article 2 for the Rights of the Child where they apply to every child without discrimination. This is what each of these aspects mean:

Social: Investigate and moral issues; appreciate diverse viewpoints; participate, volunteer and cooperate; resolve conflict; engage with the fundamental values of British democracy.

Moral: Recognise right and wrong; respect the law; understand consequences; investigate moral and ethical issues; offer reasoned views and have an appreciation of British Values.

Spiritual: Explore beliefs and experience; respect faiths, feelings and values; enjoy learning about oneself, others and the surrounding world; use imagination and creativity; reflect.

Cultural: Appreciate cultural influences; appreciate the role of Britain's parliamentary system; participate in culture opportunities; understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity.


The government states that all primary schools must show how they plan for and deliver SMSC and Fundamnetla British Values within their curriculum offer. They states that all schools should:

  • Meet the requirements for collective worship
  • establish a strong school ethos supported by effective relationships throughout the school
  • provide relevant activities beyond the classroom

These are all ways of ensuring pupils’ SMSC development.


Pupils must also be encouraged to regard people of all faiths, races and cultures with respect and tolerance.


At St Mary's, we analyse our whole curriculum and ensure that there are elements running throughout all of our teaching and learning that links to the SMSC development and enrichment for our children and have mapped out what this looks like across the school (see attached the SMSC document for further information)