Personal Development

Personal Development Education

‘Enabling you to be a person of Good character’

Our rationale: ‘To deepen pupils understanding of the wider world outside of the classroom, allowing them to make informed choices about their health, rights and responsibilities; enabling them to become people of good character acting respectfully towards themselves and others.’

Our vision is that our students recognise their intrinsic and absolute value as they are created by God and in the image of God. With this at the centre of all our teaching, and through our PDE curriculum we aim to make our teaching holistic and fitting to the needs of the students. Pope Francis spoke in his apostolic exhortation ‘Amoris Laetitia’ (Joy of Love) 2016 about the need for, ‘a positive and prudent sex education’ in our schools and it can only be seen within the broader framework of an education for love, for mutual self-giving. As a result, the PDE programme at Blessed Edward Oldcorne Catholic College is underpinned by the following Church teachings:

  • the dignity and worth of each person made in the image of God
  • the importance of individuals coming together in mutual support and regard, to live and work for the good of humankind and the greater glory of God

Our PDE curriculum will enable children to access the wider curriculum and prepare them to be a global citizen now and in their future roles within a global community; they will develop the knowledge, understanding and emotions to be able to play an active, positive, and successful role in today’s diverse society.

Through our department virtue of resilience, we aim to equip children with essential skills for life; to develop the whole child through carefully planned and resourced lessons that develop the virtues, knowledge, skills and attributes children need to protect and enhance their wellbeing and become people of good character.

Personal Development Education is a school subject through which pupils develop the knowledge, skills and attributes they need to manage their lives, now and in the future, enabling them to become people of good character. It helps children and young people to stay healthy and safe, while preparing them to make the most of life and work. This Programme of Study sets out learning opportunities for key stage 3 to 4, based on three core themes:


The statutory guidance is comprehensively covered by learning opportunities across all three core themes. Even though much of ‘Living in the wider world’ is not included in statutory requirements, the theme as a whole remains vitally important for pupils’ personal development and economic well being, as well as in supporting schools to meet the Gatsby Benchmarks for careers education as part of the DfE Careers Strategy.

Personal Development Education addresses both pupils’ current experiences and preparation for their future. The Programme of Study therefore provides a spiral curriculum to develop knowledge, skills and attributes, where prior learning is revisited, reinforced and extended year on year. This is grounded in the established evidence base for effective practice in PSHE education.

At key stage 3, students build on the knowledge and understanding, skills, attributes and values they have acquired and developed during the primary phase. PDE  acknowledges and addresses the changes that young people experience, beginning with transition to secondary school, the challenges of adolescence and their increasing independence. It teaches the knowledge and skills which will equip them for the opportunities and challenges of life. Students learn to manage diverse relationships, their online lives, and the increasing influence of peers and the media. At key stage 4, students deepen knowledge and understanding, extend and rehearse skills, and further explore attitudes, values and attributes acquired during key stage 3. PDE reflects the fact that students are moving towards an independent role in adult life, taking on greater responsibility for themselves and others. 

The scheme of work fulfils the requirements of 2020 Statutory Relationships, Sex and Health Education, setting these learning intentions in the context of a broad and balanced PDE curriculum. The PDE curriculum at Blessed Edwards is also based on and taught in line with the Catholic Education Service Model RSE policy, reflecting the 3 main themes:

Theme 1: Created and Loved by God – The Christian imperative to love self, made in the image and likeness of God, shows an understanding of the importance of valuing and understanding oneself as the basis for personal relationships.
Theme 2: Created to love others – God is love. We are created out of love and for love. The command to love is the basis of all Christian morality.
Theme 3: Created to live in community (local, national, and global) – Human beings are relational by nature and live in the wider community. Through our exchange with others, our mutual service and through dialogue, we attempt to proclaim and extend the Kingdom of God for the good of individuals and the good of society.

Year 7 Curriculum Learning Map – here

Year 8 Curriculum Learning Map – here

Year 9 Curriculum Learning Map – here

Year 10 Curriculum Learning Map – here

Year 11 Curriculum Learning Map – here

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