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Saxmundham Primary School


PSHE, RSE and PATHS Programme


At Saxmundham Primary School we believe Personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education is an important and necessary part of all pupils’ education. In our ever-changing world, we aim to equip children with the skills needed as they grow and into adulthood. We want them to question and understand what makes them special and unique as well as understand their importance as part of society and the role they could play.

At Saxmundham, we follow PATHS (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies) a social-emotional learning curriculum which helps children to improve their friendships, help them make good decisions and improve their behaviour, as well as helping children achieve overall academic success.


PATHS teaches children to;

•              Have the ability to think and problem solve for themselves

•              Understand themselves and others

•              Use emotional literacy and awareness of feelings

•              Improve their self-esteem

•              Increase their ability to learn more effectively in the classroom


Through our blended approach of using PATHS and Jigsaw for PSHE, our curriculum will teach Saxmundham children to: 

  • Have a sense of purpose
  • Value self and others
  • Form relationships
  • Make and act on informed decisions
  • Communicate effectively
  • Work with others
  • Respond to challenge
  • Be an active partner in their own learning
  • Be active citizens within the local community
  • Explore issues related to living in a democratic society
  • Become physically and mentally healthy and fulfilled individuals
  • Develop their cultural capital through exploring other cultures



The PATHS Programme develops children’s social and emotional skills, it is taught by class teachers as part of the school day. Starting in Reception, children begin to develop their self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship and responsible decision-making skills. Children learn how to manage and express their feelings and identify the feelings of others. They develop an understanding of how their behaviour affects others, and they are taught strategies to build and maintain healthy relationships and friendships. As they move further up the school, they learn how to effectively problem solve.


Every child gets a chance to be PATHS Pupil of the Day throughout the year. The pupil is chosen at random and will be given roles throughout the day which will support the teacher. They will be identified by a badge so that the rest of the school community is aware that they are the pupil of the day and they will have privileges throughout the day which vary from class to class. At the end of the session the Pupil of the Day will receive their compliments from their peers and an adult in the class, these will be written on a compliment letter and shared with parents.

PATHS is a fundamental part of our PSHE curriculum but it does not cover some of the elements of the statutory Relationship, Sex and Education (RSE) and Health education curriculum that is now compulsory for all schools. 

In EYFS and Years 1,2,3 the statutory elements of RSE are taught through our Science and PE curriculum or throughout the school year in our PATHS or PSHE Jigsaw sessions. However, for Years 4, 5 and 6 the statutory curriculum does need to be taught in separate and discrete sessions.


Other Important Information: 


At Saxmundham Primary School, as in DfE guidance:


Relationships Education is defined as teaching about the fundamental building blocks and characteristics of positive relationships, with particular reference to respectful friendships, family relationships and relationships with other children and adults, including online.


Health Education is defined as teaching pupils about physical health and mental wellbeing, focusing on recognising the link between the two and being able to make healthy lifestyle choices.


Sex Education is defined as teaching children about how human reproduction occurs, including how a baby is conceived and born. This draws on the knowledge of the human life cycle set out in the National Curriculum for science. 


Right to withdraw from Relationship and Sex Education

The RSE curriculum consists of both statutory and non-statutory elements:

  • Parents and carers do have the right to withdraw their child from the non-statutory/non science components of RSE.
  • Parents do not have the right to withdraw their child from statutory relationships education, health education or the science curriculum

For more information about this please contact the school office and see the links below.

Intent, implementation and impact