PACE (Personal & Citizenship Education) is an exciting part of the curriculum. Students in Year 7 and 8 receive two 60 minute lessons per fortnight. This is the same in Year 9 but with PACE being combined with Religious Studies and then once a fortnight in Year 10 and 11. PACE combines PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education) issues and current affair topics. Students will cover a number themes throughout the programme.
- My Identity: As part of their transition to secondary school students will look at what makes a good student, rights and responsibilities, anti-bullying, communities and identities.
- Early Careers Advice: Students are introduced to their Start profile and will look at the importance of aspirations and the skills and qualities needed for different careers.
- Relationships: During this topic, students will look at the importance of respectful friendships and relationships. They will also look at different types of families, how to deal with separation and divorce and coping with loss/bereavement.
- Managing Finance: A useful introduction to the world of finance, students will learn how to budget and save, they will look at different types of bank accounts and learn about interest rates.
- Living in the wider world: Students are introduced to prejudice and discrimination, they will look at how to keep themselves safe whilst using social media, and they are introduced to the concept of being an ethical consumer.
- Emotional health and wellbeing: During this topic students look at how to keep good mental health and how to control their anger. Other areas covered include: Puberty, the menstrual cycle and PMS (Premenstrual syndrome), FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) and sexuality.
- Charities: Students look at various local and national charities. They are also actively involved in planning, organising and running a fundraising stall to help raise money for a chosen charity. Students also study the types of projects that the money raised helps to fund.
- Surviving Year 7: For the final topic in Year 7, students will reflect on their first year at Whitcliffe Mount and create a survival guide for future students.
- Stereotyping, Discrimination and Prejudice: Year 8 PACE begins with an important and current topic. Students will revisit identity before moving onto looking at all other aspects of diversity to include: age, gender, race, religion, disability and sexuality.
- Healthy Lifestyles: Students will look at what factors contribute to leading a healthy lifestyle. In addition, they will also have the opportunity to explore and discuss various lifestyle choices. Topics covered include diet, exercise, eating disorders, mental health, smoking, alcohol and drugs.
- Early Careers Advice: Following on from the work covered in Year 7, students will look at the range of careers available in different organisations. As part of this, students will look at job stereotypes and how these are being challenged. Students will also begin to look at future career pathways.
- Managing Finance: Improving on their knowledge from Year 7, students will explore the links between a chosen job and the money you have available to live. They will study the risks associated with spending and borrowing, and the rewards associated with saving. They will look at protecting themselves (insurance) as well as the risks and consequences of gambling.
- Sex Education: Students will be taught about contraception, STI’s (sexually transmitted infections), consent, sexting, the law and pornography.
- First Aid: Students will be taught how to deal with potentially life-threatening situations including the following: the conscious casualty, the unconscious casualty (including the recovery position), serious bleeding, choking, suspected heart attack and cardiac arrest (including CPR training).
- Crime: Topics covered will include knife crime, gang culture and prisons. Students will also look into the various laws surrounding these important areas.
- Animal Rights: A popular yet controversial topic, students will begin Year 9 PACE by studying the rights of animals and the ways in which animals are used in the human world.
- Mental Health: Students will look at what is good mental health and the factors that can affect this area of development.
- Careers Advice: With Year 9 being a key year for choosing GCSE options, this topic of work will look at the different options/subjects available to students and the various pathways they can take post 16.
- Crime and Punishment: This unit of work will look at what crime is, the causes of crime and the different forms of punishment (including prisons and capital punishment) before moving on to look at religious views and forgiveness.
- Grooming and Sexual Exploitation: Students will be made aware of the different forms of sexual exploitation as well as being taught how to recognise the signs of grooming. This unit of work will also look at the legislation surrounding consent and will help students to determine what are healthy and unhealthy behaviours in a relationship.
- FGM: Students will be given an awareness of what FGM (female genital mutilation) is and the legislation that is concerned. This scheme of work will also try to dispel some of the myths surrounding FGM.
- Managing Finance: Students will look at the difference between credit and debit, and they will explore the difference between credit cards and debit cards. They will also be taught about finance, loans, online scams and 'fishing' and budgeting.
- Human Rights: Students will look at, and begin to understand, the articles of human rights, including what are the 30 basic human rights and what is the Human Rights Act (1998) and also the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948). This unit will also briefly look at the legislation surrounding the laws of human rights.
- Power, Politics and the Media: During this unit of work students will look at how laws are passed including the steps that a Bill goes through and how and why MPs examine laws before they are passed. The differences between voting systems will also be looked at, with students assessing the strengths and weaknesses for each one. There will also be a particular focus on what is a democracy.
- Careers: Year 10 will once again revisit their Start profile and gain more of an insight into what their options are post 16. They will also take part in virtual work experience.
- Health and Well-Being: In this unit of work, students will build on their knowledge of legal and illegal drugs and the methods that can be taken to prevent addiction or help someone in need.
- Mental Health: This unit of work will help students to understand what mental health is and the importance of maintaining a positive well-being. An understanding of self-harm and its effects will also be offered before moving on to look at coping strategies for exam stress and pressure.
- Relationships: Revisiting knowledge acquired from previous years, students will gain an understanding of the different types of contraception available to them and how to practice safe sex. They will also revisit their knowledge of STIs and recap the legislation surrounding ‘consent’.
- Managing Finance: Following on from the work completed in Year 9, students will be given the opportunity to look at and understand bank statements, utility bills and pay slips (including Tax and VAT).
- Post 16 Options and Decisions:As Year 11 enter their final year, they will start to cement their plans for the future. Building a CV and drafting covering letters will be key to this topic as well as writing their personal statement and completing their college applications.
- Exam Preparation: In the lead up to their final exams, students will look at different revision techniques and how to structure their own revision timetable.
- Careers: Students will look at how to successfully prepare for college/job interviews (including interview techniques).
- Life After School: A topic that covers a range of relevant issues for life beyond school. Year 11 will gain an understanding of what life is like after they leave Whitcliffe Mount including information with regards to pregnancy, paternal rights, the options of adoption and fostering and the menopause. They will learn about healthy and unhealthy relations including coercive behaviour and domestic abuse. They will also look at the responsibility that comes with passing your driving test and they be taught about voting and the different housing options available to them when they move out of home.
- Managing Finance: Students will be taught about pensions, student loans/debt, the various options available to you when a buy a house or a car, and renting versus buying.
PACE is a subject that will prepare students for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences that later life brings. In addition to this, PACE allows students to further develop their literacy skills, particularly speaking and listening skills, and also allows them to be able to articulate their own opinions when debating various issues. As quite sensitive topics are covered in PACE, students are directed to advice websites at the start of each lesson and a 'take home message' is offered at the end.