PACE (Personal & Citizenship Education) is an exciting addition to 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 issues and current affair topics. Students will cover a number themes throughout the programme.
- My Identity: As part of their transition into secondary school students will look at what makes a good student, rights and responsibilities and communities and identities.
- Children in Need: Students are actively involved in planning, organising and running a fundraising afternoon to help raise money for this national charity. Students also study the types of projects that the money raised helps to fund.
- 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 friendships and families, dealing with separation and divorce, coping with bereavement and puberty and sexuality.
- Personal Finance: A useful introduction to the world of finance, students will learn how to budget and save, look at the importance of interest rates and learn how to recognise the signs of gambling.
- Young Leader Award: The Young Leader Award is a great introduction into leadership giving students knowledge of how to organise and lead small games and activities. The Young Leader Award aims to help learners develop leadership skills such as organisation, communication and teamwork as well as helping to build confidence and self-esteem as they take on responsibility of leading their peers and younger children - all of which are fantastic life skills.
- Anti-Bullying: An important topic to include in the curriculum, students will discuss the different types of bullying and the effects that being bullied can have on a young person.
- 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: The introduction to Year 8 PACE begins with an important and current topic. Students will revisit identity before moving onto looking at all other aspects of diversity.
- Health 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.
- First Aid: Students will be taught how to deal with potentially life-threatening situations including the following: the conscious casualty, the unconscious casualty, serious bleeding, choking, suspected heart attack and cardiac arrest.
- 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 understand the importance of a CV and begin to build their own CVs for use in the future.
- Crime: Topics covered will include knife crime, gang culture and prisons. Students will also look into the various laws surrounding these important areas.
- Sex Education: Students will taught about puberty, contraception and sexually transmitted infections (STI’s).
- Managing Finances: Improving on their Year 7 knowledge, students will explore mortgages, pay day loans, hire purchase and tax.
- 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.
- Managing Finance: Continuing their learning journey, students will look at the different types of bank accounts available, the difference between credit and debit, loans, online scams and 'fishing'.
- Careers Advice: With Year 9 being a key year for choosing GCSE options, this topic of work will look at the different option subjects available to students and the various pathways they can take post 16.
- Mental Health: Students will look at what is good mental health and the factors that can affect this area of development.
- Crime and Punishment: This unit of work will look at what crime is, the causes of crime and the different forms of punishment, 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 encourage students to be able to determine what are healthy and unhealthy behaviours and life choices.
- Sex Education: 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.
- 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.
- 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 at work will also briefly look at the legislation surrounding the laws of human rights.
- Relationships: Students will gain a thorough understanding of consent and the legislation surrounding this concept. They will also revisit their knowledge of sex education and STIs.
- Health and Well-Being: In this unit of work, students will gain knowledge of legal and illegal drugs and the methods that can be taken to prevent addiction or help someone in need.
- 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.
- Healthy Lifestyles: Mental Health, Self-Harm and Exam Pressure: 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.
- Careers: Year 10 will once again revisit their Start profile and gain more of an insight into what their options are post 16.
- Managing Finances: Following on from the work completed in Year 9, students will continue to look at budgeting in more detail. Students will also be given the opportunity to look at and understand bank statements, utility bills and pay slips.
- 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 initiating applications to college.
- Exam Preparation: In the lead up to their final exams, students will look at different revision techniques and begin to build their own revision timetable.
- Life After School: A topic that will range most of the year and one that will be revisited at various stages, Year 11 will be gaining an understanding of what life is like after Whitcliffe Mount. Students will look at a range of issues, including: what to expect from job interviews, the different housing options available to them when they move out and how to manage their finances effectively.
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.