Birmingham Approach to Relationships and Health Education in Primary Schools
In 2015, Birmingham City Council published an equalities toolkit for schools, All Different; All Equal, along with the Birmingham Curriculum Statement which set out our aspirations for children and young people in Birmingham. We also worked with BRAP, an equalities charity in Birmingham to offer advice, support and training to schools on Mastering Equality and Unconscious Bias.
Following the publication of the Children and Social Work Act, 2017 and the subsequent changes to Department for Education policy due to take effect in September 2020, we have seen protests outside two primary schools in Birmingham. This has had a detrimental impact on pupils, their families, staff and governors and has largely been fuelled by misinformation.
To respond to this, and the autonomy afforded to schools by the changes, we have not only updated the equality toolkit, but have developed, with primary schools in Birmingham, a standalone resource to support primary schools to meet the requirements of the statutory teaching of relationships and health education in primary schools.
This resource includes helpful documents to enable staff and parent consultation, advice for governors, model letters and a set of resources and lesson plans from Year 1 to Year 6, all of which meet the statutory requirements for September 2020. There are additional optional resources for sex education, which although not compulsory for primary schools, will be helpful for those schools that wish to include sex education in their offer to pupils. This resource will enable schools to meet the minimum requirements of the mandatory curriculum changes, and to build on this to ensure that all children are included.
We want all children in Birmingham, whoever they are, whatever family they are from, to feel valued and respected, and to see themselves reflected in the resources and the relationships that are modelled through the craft of teaching in our schools every day.