SPHE Policy

Whole School Plan for


Social, Personal and Health Education

 Introductory StatementThe staff of  St Raphael’s formulated this school plan for SPHE, in consulation with our Board of Management and our Parents, as we believe that SPHE is a shared responsibility and their contributions and involvement will be essential to the effective implementation of the SPHE programme in the school.  It was drafted during an in-school planning day, with the assistance of a local cuiditheoir from the Primary Curriculum Support Program in 2018, and brought to the attention of the Board of Management and Parents.It was then reviewed with consultation with a PDST Advisor in April 2018. RationaleAspects of SPHE have been taught in   St Raphael’s   for many years through various programmes and initiatives such as Stay Safe, Walk Tall, Relationships and Sexuality Education.  It has also been taught through integration with other subject areas such as Physical Education, Religion, Geography, etc.  However, we wish to formalise our teaching of SPHE and plan for it on a whole school basis.  
 VisionIt is our school’s philiosphy to enable each child to reach his true potential.  SPHE provides particular opportunities to foster the personal development, health and well being of the child and to help him to create and maintain supportive relationships and in time become an active and responsible citizen in society.Our SPHE Programme will develop in the children a framework of values, attitudes and skills that will inform their actions and decisions in these areas of their lives both now and in the future.  AimsThe children of    St Raphael’s  should be enabled to achieve the aims outlined in the SPHE curriculum, which include: to promote the personal development and well-being of the childto foster in the child a sense of care and respect for himself and others and an appreciation of the dignity of every human beingto promote the health of the child and provide a foundation for healthy living in all its aspects to enable the child to make informed decisions and choices about the social, personal and health dimensions of life both now and in the futureTo develop in the child a sense of social responsibility, a commitment to active and participative citizenship and an appreciation of the democratic way of lifeto enable the child to respect human and cultural diversity and to appreciate and understand the interdependent nature of the world     
 Curriculum Strands and Strand UnitsThe curriculum is delineated at four levels—infant classes, first and second classes, third and fourth classes, and fifth and sixth classes—and is divided into three strands: Myself, Myself andothers, and Myself and the wider world. Each of these strands is further subdivided into a number of strand units or topic areas that contain particular objectives. The staff of St. Raphael’s NS will teach aspects of all three major strand units each year and strand units will be chosen in such a way that the child will receive a comprehensive programme in SPHE over a two year period.  St.Raphael’s have created this timetable to reflect this approach:    Month Year 1Senior Infants, 2nd , 4th , 6thYear 2Junior Infants, 1st , 3rd , 5thSeptember Bullying (1 lesson)Self Identity  (Myself)Bully (1 lesson)Taking care of my bodyOctoberBullying (1 lesson)Self Identity  (Myself)Bully (1 lesson)Taking care of my bodyNovember Bullying(1 lesson)Growing and changingBullying(1 lesson)MAKING DECISIONSDecember Bullying(1 lesson)Growing and changingBullying(1 lesson)MAKING DECISIONSJanuary Cyberbullying(2 lessons)Relating to othersCyberbullying(2 lessons)Media EducationFebruaryBullying (1 lesson)Stay safe ProgrammeBullying (1 lesson)Stay safe ProgrammeMarchBullying (1 lesson)Stay safe ProgrammeBullying (1 lesson)Stay safe ProgrammeApril Bullying(1 lesson)Myself and My familyBullying(1 lesson)My friends and other peopleMay RSE lessonsRSE lessonsJuneDeveloping citizenshipSafety and Protection  *Making decisions is only a strand unit from 3rd – 6th, Juniors – 2nd may complete the Safety Issues section of Safety and protection at this time. Due to the increased amount of lessons in the Stay Safe Programme from 3rd to 6th class, placing the strand unit Making decisions after the Safety and protection in a standard two year plan will enable the teacher to achieve some of the content objectives of Making decisions through the Stay Safe Programme.      Year1: Senior Infants, 2nd class, 4th class, 6th classWalk Tall Programme and Stay Safe Programme Year2: Junior Infants, 1st class, 3rd class, 5th classWalk Tall Programme and RSE Programme     Contexts for SPHESPHE will be taught in  St Raphael’s NS through a combination of the following contexts: Positive School Climate and Atmosphere  St  Raphael’s  has created a positive atmosphere by:building effective communicationcatering for individual needs creating a health-promoting physical environmentdeveloping democratic processes enhancing self-esteem fostering respect for diversity fostering inclusive and respectful language developing appropriate communication developing a school approach to assessment  Discrete time for SPHESPHE is allocated ½ hour per week on each teacher’s timetable in  St Raphael’s    . However teachers may allocate 1 hour per fortnight  to allow for more indepth exploration of a strand unit. Integration with other subject areas and Linkage within SPHETeachers will endeavour to adopt an thematic approach to SPHE by integrating it with other subject areas such as Language, Geography, History, Religion, Visual Arts, Physical Education, etc.  Themes such as Healthy Eating Week, Friendship Week, Lenten Campaign, Active School etc. will also be explored.  Approaches and MethodologiesIn St Raphael’s, we believe that the approaches and methodologies used in SPHE are crucial to the effectiveness of the programme. Active learning is the principal learning and teaching approach recommended for SPHE, therefore we will endeavour to teach SPHE using a variety of strategies which include:drama activitiesco-operative gamesuse of picturesphotographs and visual imageswritten activitiesuse of mediainformation technologies and looking at children’s workWebsites- eg, staysafe.ie      AssessmentAssessment is a central part of the everyday learning and teaching process in SPHE. It can provide valuable information on the child’s progress and on the effectiveness and suitability of the programme and the teaching methods being used.                   uses the following recommended informal tools for assessment in SPHE:Teacher observationTeacher-designed tasks and tests The information gleaned is used when communicating about the child to other teachers and in discussions with the parents.  In addition it is used by the teachers when planning future lessons   Children with Different NeedsTeachers will endeavour to adapt and modify activities and methodologies in SPHE to encourage participation by children with special needs.  SET will supplement the work of the class teachers where necessary.    The staff of  St Raphael’s  will liasise with trained professionals/appropriate agencies when dealing with sensitive issues such as bereavement or loss to ensure that the children involved are fully supported. Equality of Participation and AccessThe staff of St Raphael’s NS  recognises and values diversity, and believes all children are entitled to access the services, facilities or amenities that are available in the school environment.  Ours is a boys only school and we endeavour to challenge traditional stereotypes and ensure that equal opportunities are given to all children to participate in discussion, debate, presentation, etc.  St Raphael’s NS  is under Roman Catholic school management, and we endeavour to provide for all diversities within our school community.  Organisation Policies and Programmes that support SPHE: PoliciesChild Safeguarding StatementAnti-BullyingRelationships and Sexuality EducationSubstance Use Code of BehaviourEnrolmentHealth and SafetyHealthy Eating PracticesInternet Acceptable Useage      Homework:SPHE homework, if prescribed in SPHE, will reflect the active learning approach and will reinforce information already taught during class.                         Resources Programmes and Other Materials Books for PupilBooks for TeacherAudio / VisualPostersMedia & ICTWorksheets from Stay Safe and RSE     RSE ManualsWalk TallStay SafeMaking the Links and Beyond Food DudesVarious posters throughout the schoolWebwise.iepdstStaysafe.ie                    Guest SpeakersWhen a guest speaker addresses the children in SPHE, the class teacher will remain in the classroom (as per Circular 22/2010) and make the speaker aware of this school plan and attached policies. Individual Teachers’ Planning and ReportingThis plan in SPHE and the curriculum documents will inform and guide teachers in their long and short term planning in SPHE.  Each teacher will keep a Cuntas Míosúil and this will inform our progress and needs when evaluating and reviewing our progress in SPHE.  Teachers will report in writing to the Board of Management at the end of each school year that they have completed the Stay Safe Programme. Staff DevelopmentTraining opportunities will include the following areas and this training will support an effective implementation of the SPHE programme:training in the Child Abuse Prevention Programme/ Stay Safe training in the Substance Misuse programme /Walk Talltraining in the Relationships and Sexuality Education programme /R.S.E. PDST Advisor support and modelling of lessons Teachers are encouraged to attend SPHE related courses and will share information/skills acquired at these courses with other members of staff during staff meetings.  Parental InvolvementParental involvement is considered an integral part to effectively implementing SPHE as   we the staff of St Raphael’s  believe that SPHE is a shared responsibilty.  This plan and the curriculum documents are available for parents to inform them of the programme for SPHE. Community Links                  St Raphael’s NS believe that the local community has a very important role to play in supporting the programme in SPHE and endeavour to liasise with the members such as the Dental Hygienist, Health Nurse, Fireman, Vet, New Parent, etc.     
 Success CriteriaThe success of this plan will be evaluated through teacher’s planning and preparation, and if the procedures outlined in this plan have been consistently followed.  We will also judge its success if the children have been enabled to achieve the aims outlined in this plan.  
 Implementation Roles and Responsibilities       In St Raphael’s NS, we believe that the school community must be involved to successfully implement SPHE.  Therefore the teaching staff will implement this plan with the support of the Board of Management, Parents and the Local Community. TimeframeThe plan will be implemented in September 2018  
 Review Roles and ResponsibilitiesIt will be necessary to review this plan on a regular basis to ensure optimum implementation of the SPHE curriculum in the school.    Those involved in the review will include:TeachersPupilsParentsPost holders/plan co-ordinatorBoM/DES/Others TimeframeThis plan will be reviewed in June 2021      
 Ratification and CommunicationThe Board of Management of                         ratified this plan on  Signed _________________________Date ___________________________This plan is available to view at the school by the parents on request.