Personal, social, health and economic education

Personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education is the traditional subject title for all aspects of personal development learning, including relationships, health and sex education and citizenship education.

In March 2017 the Department for Education (DfE) announced that primary relationships, secondary relationships, sex and health education is now statutory. All schools must make sure that their policies and programmes comply with the statutory guidance published in February 2019, with a view to full implementation from September 2020.

PSHE education gives children and young people the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to lead confident, healthy, safe, successful and purposeful lives.

PSHE education helps pupils to achieve their full academic potential and supports them to leave school equipped with the skills they'll need throughout later life.

Aims of PSHE

The aims of personal, social, health and economic education (including relationships, sex and health education) are to make sure that:

  • children and young people are provided with the knowledge, understanding skills and attitudes to make informed decisions about their lives.
  • children and young people know how to be safe and healthy on and offline; how to manage their academic, personal and social lives in a positive way.
  • key staff receive appropriate continued professional development (CPD) opportunities and support to deliver, assess, monitor and evaluate a planned programme of PSHE and RSE in line with relevant statutory guidance.
  • schools complement and reinforce the role that parents/carers have in being the prime educators for children and young people.

Useful links and documents

PSHE resources for parents/carers, professionals and children and young people

The Think U Know website focuses on keeping children safe from harm both online and offline, as well as helping children get the best out of the internet. The website provides a range of resources, information and advice available for parents/carers, professionals, children and young people.

Additional resources

  • The Sex Education Forum provides a range of resources to deliver sex education and approaches in schools.
  • The Family Planning Association
  • Sexwise is a website for young people with advice on relationships, contraception, STIs and pregnancy.
  • Rise Above provides information for young people on a whole range of topics relating to life, such as emotional health, relationships and sexual health. They also have lesson plans that teachers can use.
  • The Teenage Resource has been designed to support teenagers with autism, their parents and professionals working with them. This provides resources and ideas which may be suitable for supporting a teenager with autism across a variety of environments and situations.