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You are here Parents School Policy on Relationships & Sexuality Education (RSE)

Scoil Náisiúnta Bhantiarna Lourdes is a co-educational primary school. We endeavour to create a warm, safe, secure environment for all our children, where Christian values of respect and understanding are promoted.

It is the ethos of our school that all children are cherished equally and felt valued as individuals, where uniqueness is appreciated and nurtured. Self-esteem is fostered and respect, tolerance and fairness are evident both within and outside the classroom.

We support children with difficulties and encourage each child to reach his/her full potential. In doing this we see ourselves as a community made up of pupils, their parents and teachers, working as a unit for the child’s benefit.
On leaving school we hope that each child would be equipped with life skills to enable him/her to make the successful transition to secondary school.

What is R.S.E.?
Relationships and Sexuality Education is a lifelong process of acquiring knowledge and understanding and of developing attitudes, beliefs and values about sexual identity, relationships and intimacy. Parents, teachers, peers, adults and the media deliver this education consciously and unconsciously. Sexuality education seeks to provide young people with formal opportunities to acquire knowledge and understanding of human sexuality through processes, which will enable them to form values and establish behaviours within a moral, spiritual and social framework.

The R.S.E. programme begins in Junior Infants and carries right through, in appropriate stages, to sixth year in secondary school.

What is S.P.H.E.?

Social, Personal and Health Education contributes to developing the work of the school in promoting the health and well being of children and young people.

Our main aim is to help children make informed choices or decisions related to their health. This entails increasing children’s factual knowledge and promoting healthy beliefs and values. It is therefore a holistic model, which has themes and activities that can be integrated into the existing programmes of the subjects in the curriculum, all within the framework of the ethos of the school.

Aims and Objectives
• To enhance the personal development, self-esteem and well being of the child.
• To help the child to develop healthy friendships and relationships within families, in friendships and in wider contexts.
• To develop an appreciation of the dignity, uniqueness and well being of others.
• To foster an understanding of and a healthy attitude to human sexuality and relationships in a moral, spiritual and social framework, taking into account different family patterns.
• To develop and promote in the child a sense of wonder and awe at the process of birth and new life.
• To enable the child to acquire an understanding of and respect for human love, sexual intercourse and reproduction and to appreciate the responsibilities of parenthood and the value of family life.
• To enable the child to be comfortable with the sexuality of oneself and others while growing and developing and to understand that their developing sexuality is an important aspect of self-identity.
• To develop coping strategies to help the children to make informed decisions, which will sustain them safely in all relationships throughout life.

Sexuality Education
The section dealing with Sexuality Education is only a small part of the Relationship and Sexuality Education programme, which in turn is part of the Social Personal and Health Education Programme.

Within the Sexuality area, vocabulary will be used to describe body parts, which may not be used in the home e.g. the terms of penis, vulva, navel and umbilical cord will be introduced early.

Parents’ Role:
• Parents, as the prime educators, are encouraged to support the programme by becoming fully aware of its content, discussing it with their children as it is being taught, reinforcing its aims and objectives and giving genuine feed-back for ongoing review.

Parents’ Rights:
• The school will have a written opt out clause and opt out pupils will be supervised in a different classroom.

Teachers’ Rights:
• Teachers can opt out and the relevant teacher’s class programme will be taught by another member of staff or by a specially trained person such as a member of Accord.