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Relationship & Sex Education (RSE)

Catholic schools, like all other schools in England, are required to produce a written policy following the guidance issued by the Department for Education on Sex and Relationship Education (SRE). The DfE guidance can be found here. Catholic schools are also required to deliver RSE in accordance with the teaching of the Church. This approach is compatible with the guidance issued by the DfE.

Why is RSE in Catholic Schools important?

RSE is part of the mission of Catholic schools to educate the whole person. It should be carried out as part of the holistic education which seeks to form as well as inform young people in preparation for adult life.

What does outstanding RSE in Catholic school look like?

In order for Catholic RSE to be fully effective it needs to:

  • be faithful to the Church's vision of human wholeness whilst recognising the contemporary context in which we live today;
  • involve parents as they are primary educators of their child;
  • provide a positive view of human sexuality and dignity of the human person;
  • equip young people with the ability to make practical judgments about the right thing to do in particular circumstances;
  • explore and promote virtues which are essential to promoting respect and dignity;
  • be delivered in an age appropriate way which reflects the development of the child;
  • be part of the cross-curricular work in both primary and secondary schools;
  • be sensitive to the needs of the individual pupil and recognise the mix of pupils with different sexual orientations, genders and family backgrounds in each class;
  • be taken seriously by governors and teachers as an integrated part of the broad and balanced curriculum that Catholic schools offer;
  • be delivered by competent professionals who understand the Church's teaching.

Resources for Catholic RSE

The Bishops on the CES management committee have approved the following Catholic RSE resources for use in Catholic schools. These resources have been developed using expertise of teachers who deliver RSE and PSHE in a Catholic context. The resources are available to download below. They include:

The resources include: 

  • A model Primary Catholic RSE Curriculum
  • A model Secondary Catholic RSE Curriculum
  • A model RSE policy for Catholic schools
  • Good practice in developing a Catholic school RSE policy
  • A quality standard for Catholic RSE
  • A Governor Audit for RSE
  • A document which sets out who is responsible for teaching RSE
  • Outstanding RSE in a Catholic Context – A case study