PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic) education is a planned, developmental programme of learning through which children and young people acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to manage their lives now and in the future. As part of a whole-school approach, PSHE education develops the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of society.
PSHE education equips pupils to live healthy, safe, productive, capable, responsible and balanced lives. It encourages them to be enterprising and supports them in making effective transitions, positive learning and career choices and in achieving economic wellbeing. A critical component of PSHE education is providing opportunities for children and young people to reflect on and clarify their own values and attitudes and explore the complex and sometimes conflicting range of values and attitudes they encounter now and in the future.
PSHE education contributes to personal development by helping pupils to build their confidence, resilience and self-esteem, and to identify and manage risk, make informed choices and understand what influences their decisions. It enables them to recognize, accept and shape their identities, to understand and accommodate difference and change, to manage emotions and to communicate constructively in a variety of settings. Developing an understanding of themselves, empathy and the ability to work with others will help pupils to form and maintain good relationships, develop the essential skills for future employability and better enjoy and manage their lives.
In relation to the above, the aim for PSHE education is to provide pupils with:
- accurate, balanced and relevant knowledge;
- opportunities to turn that knowledge into personal understanding;
- opportunities to explore, clarify and if necessary challenge, their own and others’ values, attitudes, beliefs, rights and responsibilities;
- the skills, language and strategies they need in order to live healthy, safe, fulfilling, responsible and balanced lives;
- opportunities to develop positive personal attributes such as resilience, self-confidence, self-esteem, and empathy.