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Children attending Gainsborough Primary School often have very few experiences of life outside of their local area. This is due to us being located in an area of high deprivation and high mobility.

At Gainsborough Primary School, we enable our children to become independent, responsible and healthy members of society. Our aim is to equip children to understand how they are developing personally and socially whilst developing resilience to tackle any moral, social or cultural real life factors they may experience.  We provide opportunities to explore, understand and respectfully challenge their own and others’ values, attitudes, beliefs, rights and responsibilities ensuring that children appreciate what it means to be a member of a diverse community. 

By providing pupils with a happy, purposeful and supportive environment, children are enabled to become successful learners, develop their full potential and achieve the highest educational standards that they can. Our school reflects a passionate commitment to learning and recognition of the uniqueness of individual learners and their needs. It is driven by our shared desire to offer the best possible education for our pupils in partnership with parents and the local community. We aim to show the significance of learning RSHE through showing the career opportunities available as part of our ‘Aspirations’ initiative.

We understand that RSHE is lifelong learning about a person's physical, moral and emotional development. The RSHE curriculum ensures that by the time the children leave in Year 6, they will have knowledge of:

Families and people who care for me:

  • that families are important for children growing up because they can give love, security and stability.

  • the characteristics of healthy family life, commitment to each other, including in times of difficulty, protection and care for children and other family members, the importance of spending time together and sharing each other’s lives.

  • that others’ families, either in school or in the wider world, sometimes look different from their family, but that they should respect those differences and know that other children’s families are also characterised by love and care.

  • that stable, caring relationships, which may be of different types, are at the heart of happy families, and are important for children’s security as they grow up.

  • that marriage represents a formal and legally recognised commitment of two people to each other which is intended to be lifelong.

  • how to recognise if family relationships are making them feel unhappy or unsafe, and how to seek help or advice from others if needed

Caring Friendships: 

  • how important friendships are in making us feel happy and secure, and how people choose and make friends.

  • the characteristics of friendships, including mutual respect, truthfulness, trustworthiness, loyalty, kindness, generosity, trust, sharing interests and experiences and support with problems and difficulties.

  • that healthy friendships are positive and welcoming towards others, and do not make others feel lonely or excluded.

  • that most friendships have ups and downs, and that these can often be worked through so that the friendship is repaired or even strengthened, and that resorting to violence is never right.

  • how to recognise who to trust and who not to trust, how to judge when a friendship is making them feel unhappy or uncomfortable, managing conflict, how to manage these situations and how to seek help or advice from others, if needed.

Respectful Relationships:

  • the importance of respecting others, even when they are very different from ourselves (for example, physically, in character, personality or backgrounds), or make different choices or have different preferences or beliefs.

  • practical steps they can take in a range of different contexts to improve or support respectful relationships.

  • the conventions of courtesy and manners.

  • the importance of self-respect and how this links to their own happiness.

  • that in school and in wider society they can expect to be treated with respect by others, and that in turn they should show due respect to others, including those in positions of authority.

  • about different types of bullying (including cyberbullying), the impact of bullying, responsibilities of bystanders (primarily reporting bullying to an adult) and how to get help.

  • what a stereotype is, and how stereotypes can be unfair, negative or destructive.

  • the importance of permission-seeking and giving in relationships with friends, peers and adults.

Online Relationships: 

  • that people sometimes behave differently online, including by pretending to be someone they are not.

  • that the same principles apply to online relationships as to face-to- face relationships, including the importance of respect for others online including when we are anonymous.

  • the rules and principles for keeping safe online, how to recognise risks, harmful content and contact, and how to report them.

  • how to critically consider their online friendships and sources of information including awareness of the risks associated with people they have never met.

  • how information and data is shared and used online.

Being Safe:

  • what sorts of boundaries are appropriate in friendships with peers and others (including in a digital context).

  • about the concept of privacy and the implications of it for both children and adults; including that it is not always right to keep secrets if they relate to being safe.

  • that each person’s body belongs to them, and the differences between appropriate and inappropriate or unsafe physical, and other, contact.

  • how to respond safely and appropriately to adults they may encounter (in all contexts, including online) whom they do not know.

  • how to recognise and report feelings of being unsafe or feeling bad about any adult.

  • how to ask for advice or help for themselves or others, and to keep trying until they are heard.

  • how to report concerns or abuse, and the vocabulary and confidence needed to do so.

  • where to get advice e.g. family, school and/or other sources.

Vocabulary development is a key aspect of our whole school curriculum as a result of the high proportion of children who start Gainsborough Primary School with lower levels of vocabulary than is typical for their age.

Vocabulary is taught explicitly to support the development of key concepts. In ‘Relationships’ for example, children in EYFS will use language such as ‘family, celebrate, special, trust’ as they describe the roles in their family, and how to be a good friend towards others. Moving into Key Stage 1, the vocabulary is built upon, such as ‘sharing, caring, friendship, appreciate’. By the end of Key Stage 2, children will have developed their vocabulary around the topic of relationships, using words such as ‘assertiveness, ashamed, bereavement, acceptance and self-control’. We ensure that our RSHE is closely linked to safeguarding and use a range of strategies and resources to ensure children have a well rounded view of how this can affect themselves, families and communities.

The RSHE curriculum starts when the children begin their learning journey in the Early Years. The progress children should be expected to have attained by the end of the EYFS is defined by the early learning goals in the seven areas of learning. Our RSHE curriculum in the EYFS  can contribute to most of these areas of learning but perhaps most significantly to: personal, social and emotional development, understanding the world, and physical development.


Relationships, Health and Sex Education (RSHE) is central to Gainsborough’s ethos, supporting children in their development, and underpinning learning in the classroom, school, and in the wider community. We believe a collaborative culture is vital in enabling children to develop personally and emotionally, and as young citizens.

Our curriculum offers a comprehensive program which supports pupils’ spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development and prepares them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of life, as set out in Section 78 of the Education Act 2002. Through JIGSAW, teaching and learning comprises of

  • Health and Wellbeing

  • Relationships

  • Living in the Wider World

We understand that children have missed opportunities of learning because of the COVID outbreak and the resulting distance and blended learning models that were used in the previous school years. Our current teaching model ensures that any missed opportunities are addressed before teaching new concepts and topics. This pre-teaching approach ensures that children are able to access the new learning and build upon their knowledge and skills, while systematically reviewing previous learning.

Aspects of RSHE are embedded in learning within the provision of SEND learning to ensure that all children have access to a broad and balanced curriculum. Themes are planned throughout the year that allow for RSHE skills and knowledge to be embedded and built upon. Children with high levels of need have a broad curriculum offer, linking into National Curriculum themes, but with scaffolded learning which meets their needs, ensuring they are also making good progress from their initial starting points.

At Gainsborough, we believe that all learners should primarily access the first quality teaching and be immersed in class discussions during RSHE lessons. Therefore, SEND learners access the same learning as all other children but will be given further support, adapted outcomes and a tailored approach to suit each individual’s needs. Strategies used to support our SEND learners include:

  • A pre-teach of topic specific vocabulary

  • Printouts of work/presentations to scaffold with independent tasks 

  • Instructions broken down into manageable chunks and more time given to process the information



RSHE at Gainsborough equips children with the knowledge, understanding, skills and strategies required to live healthy, safe, creative, accomplished, responsible and balanced lives. A critical component of the curriculum provides opportunities for children to reflect on and clarify their own values and attitudes in a respectful manner. It also enables them to explore the variety of values and attitudes they encounter now as children and into their later lives. 

As part of a whole-school approach, RSHE education develops the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of society. Also, it reduces and removes many of the barriers to learning experienced by pupils, significantly improving their capacity to learn and achieve and succeed. It also makes a significant contribution to pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development, their behaviour and safety, and to their emotional wellbeing.


The impact of our RSHE curriculum at Gainsborough ensures that children are equipped with the emotional skills and knowledge that will enable them to be ready to continue their learning journey in KS3 and for life as an adult in the wider world. Children will be clear about the careers available to them as part of our ‘Aspirations’ aspect of the curriculum and continue to explore opportunities available to them.