A Decline of PSHE in Schools- How This is Failing Young People

Posted by on Sep 11, 2012 in Main Blog | 0 comments

As pressure increases on schools to perform well and to raise standards, some subject areas are being pushed to one side. This isn’t because that is what schools want, far from it, but because there are only so many hours in a school day and the threat of Ofsted is always a heavy weight on a school’s shoulders.
Don’t get me wrong, I believe schools should continue to strive to achieve their best and to encourage young people to do the same, but the route that schools are being forced to take to try to make this happen is not only to the detriment of those young people who are challenged academically but to the subject areas that it may seem it is okay to ‘lose’.
One of those subjects is PSHE. I have heard from many teachers that they are not able to focus on this so much and I have heard of schools that just don’t do it anymore because of other demands.
This concerns me. Schools play a key role in educating and helping young people to make informed decisions about drugs. Many of the drug education services that have supported schools with this have been lost in the last 2 years, and schools are finding it increasingly more difficult to fit drug education into the curriculum. This along with sex and relationship lessons is being sacrificed to make room for more targeted teaching of the core subjects. Where will young people develop these fundamental life skills? Yes parents and carers can and should be involved in helping to develop necessary awareness and understanding, but not all are able/confident enough to and even for those who are, it should be reinforced from all areas of a child/young person’s life, including school.
The (previous) government set up initiatives, such as the Healthy Schools programme. I have worked with many schools who have worked hard to achieve this standard and continue to provide quality PSHE, but I am worried that many are feeling that they are unable to find time to deliver it.
A balance needs to be found to ensure that young people receive PSHE. It is time that PSHE became a compulsory subject. It is being put on the ‘backburner’ by the government for now, yet they state in their reports about issues such as domestic violence and gangs that there is a need for schools to take responsibility and deliver the appropriate education. Schools need support and guidance to do this. The Angelus Foundation is petitioning for drug education to be part of the curriculum http://www.angelusfoundation.com .
Schools (that don’t already) need to realise that even though PSHE is not a compulsory part of the curriculum, they have a responsibility to deliver it, and by not doing so, they are failing young people.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!