5. What does the guidance mean for special schools?

What does the new Relationships Education (RE), Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) and Health Education Statutory guidance mean for special schools?

The good news is…the guidance is pretty much the same for special schools as it is for mainstream schools.

It is important to note though that in special schools, and for some SEND pupils in mainstream schools, it is a great idea to tailor content and teaching to meet the specific needs of pupils at different developmental stages.

You know your students best – so make sure the content is best for them!

As with all teaching for these subjects, schools should ensure that their teaching is sensitive, age-appropriate, developmentally appropriate and delivered with reference to the law.

Schools should be aware that some pupils are more vulnerable to exploitation, bullying and other issues due to the nature of their SEND, particularly those with Social, Emotional and Mental Health needs or learning disabilities. So, again, try to tailor the content accordingly.

If there is a request to withdraw the student, the head teacher may want to take a pupil’s specific needs arising from their SEND into account when making the final decision. The young person’s safety is at the heart of all decisions – as it is at the heart of the guidance!

Teachers are asked to be mindful of the SEND Code of Practice alongside the new guidance, which details legal requirements and duties of local authorities, health bodies, schools and colleges to provide for those with special educational needs. It emphasises the need to encourage independence and to meet individual needs.

The guidance aims to ensure that young people are happy, healthy and safe, regardless of their special needs. We agree with that here at Loudmouth!

Here is a video from the NSPCC that might help with teaching SEND pupils.

For more information on RSE 2020, keep up to date with our series of blogs on our website, and sign up to the Loudmouth E-Newsletter.

Finally, make sure you check out our information on the Roadmap to Statutory RSE, created by the Sex Education Forum and PSHE Association.

What people say

Take a look at how we’ve helped others

Brilliant acting and interaction with the children. The play itself covered puberty in an open, realistic and humorous way which forms a terrific basis for future discussion with the teacher and each other. So much depends on the enthusiasm of the actors and I feel that we were very lucky to have such a talented pair, not only to perform, but to lead the discussions afterwards. They were able to relate to the children without any embarrassment. SUPERB!!

Governor/Teacher

Compared to other companies we have had covering the same content, the actors were more flexible and accommodating to the children’s individual needs. Through their answers and questions, the children were demonstrating a higher level of understanding, empathy and personal safety.

Safeguarding Lead