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Head of Department – Mr C Walsgrove, B.A.

The National Curriculum was recently reviewed by the DFE. During the review an organisation call Democratic Life set up to campaign to retain citizenship in the National Curriculum and to improve the quality of teaching in schools. The campaign was successful and citizenship continues as a statutory National Curriculum subject in secondary schools.  A revised National Curriculum was published by the DFE for first teaching from September 2014 and the subject remains key to providing a broad and balanced curriculum in all schools. 

Throughout key stages 3 and 4, PSHE promotes abilities, competencies and skills in relation to oneself and others and deals with issues of social responsibility and morality including respect for the differences between people. Citizenship education helps to provide pupils with knowledge, skills and understanding to prepare them to play a full and active part in society. In particular, citizenship education should foster pupils’ keen awareness and understanding of democracy, government and how laws are made and upheld.

At the Heathland School all pupils are taught PSHE as a discrete lesson every Wednesday P1. Tutors deliver the individual lesson to their tutor group but they follow a scheme of work and lesson resources that has been designed by the PSHE department. These lessons are utilising best practise resources and guidance from both the PSHE association and the Association for Citizenship Teaching.


The key stage curriculum for PSHE and citizenship aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • Acquire a sound knowledge and understanding of how the United Kingdom is governed, its political system and how citizens participate actively in its democratic systems of government
  • Develop a sound knowledge and understanding of the role of law and the justice system in our society and how laws are shaped and enforced
  • Develop an interest in, and commitment to, participation in volunteering as well as other forms of responsible activity, that they will take with them into adulthood
  • Are equipped with the skills to think critically and debate political questions, to enable them to manage their money on a day-to-day basis, and plan for future financial needs.

Pupils will be taught about:

  • The development of the political system of democratic government in the United Kingdom, including the roles of citizens, Parliament and the monarch
  • The operation of Parliament, including voting and elections, and the role of political parties
  • The precious liberties enjoyed by the citizens of the United Kingdom
  • The nature of rules and laws and the justice system, including the role of the police and the operation of courts and tribunals
  • The roles played by public institutions and voluntary groups in society, and the ways in which citizens work together to improve their communities, including opportunities to participate in school-based activities
  • The functions and uses of money, the importance and practice of budgeting, and managing risk.