KS3 Curriculum Guide
CPRE (Citizenship, Personal and Religious Education) forms part of the curriculum in every year at Sweyne Park. Pupils have four RE lessons per fortnight in Year 7 and two per fortnight in Year 8, while they have two CPE lessons per fortnight in both years. In Years 9, 10 and 11 pupils study a combination of the two subjects in a single CPRE lesson. The course challenges pupils to think about a wide range of issues and situations they will face in their lives. It provides a firm basis of knowledge and enables pupils to develop their own spirituality and code of behaviour, and to gain an understanding of, and respect for, other people’s beliefs, faith and attitudes.
The course is built around the concept of respect; respect for oneself, respect for others and respect for all aspects of environment. CPE is taught in mixed ability tutor groups, whilst RE and CPRE are taught in sets.
Religious Education (RE) Aspects
The Essex Agreed Syllabus is followed to provide pupils with the basic factual information about religious beliefs including Humanism, but with a special reference to Christianity because of its unique place in Britain’s culture. By doing so we hope to develop within the pupils their own beliefs and values.
Topics are taught as enquiries, investigating key concepts through engaging with an overarching question over a series of lessons. Enquiries include ‘does God exist?’; ‘can war ever be justified?’; ‘why is Jesus such a significant figure across the world?’ and ‘are science and religion in conflict?’
Citizenship and Personal Education (CPE) Aspects
Pupils are asked to extend their self-awareness, to examine the opportunities open to them and then consider consequences of choosing one course of action over another. They are encouraged to approach life with an open mind, finding out the facts before making their choices from an informed point of view. Part of this process is to learn the accepted standards of society at large.
The CPE aspect works on a spiral curriculum dealing with personal safety issues, drugs education, work and careers, health education (which includes sex education) and financial skills. A good example would be financial education; in Year 7, pupils study the purpose of banks and the different types of bank account available, in Year 8 the importance of budgeting and in Year 9 the difference between debit, credit and debt and how to manage money sensibly and effectively. This is then built on further in CPRE in Years 10 and 11.
Pupils are assessed on their ability to understand and use information in addition to demonstrating knowledge of key concepts. They are assessed on their written work, content and presentation and their oral contributions to lessons. Assessments are carried out at the end of each enquiry throughout the year.
Home learning is set on a regular basis. We endeavour to make home learnings as varied as possible; tasks may include research, making items, revising a topic, talking to parents, reading, as well as written tasks. The aim of home learning tasks is to reinforce and extend the knowledge and skills developed in the classroom.
Beyond the Classroom
The CPRE Department is proud of its wider offering to pupils. We arrange many events, with a range of outside agencies being involved. Drama groups and individuals visit the school on a regular basis to back up work done in the classroom; special events, such as the Year 7 Christmas celebration event at Holy Trinity Church, are also arranged.
The personal and social development of pupils is an integral part of education, and as such is found in all elements of school life. As well as the formal CPRE curriculum, a significant contribution is made through English, Drama and the pastoral system. The work we do on child rights is reflected in the whole school commitment to the UNICEF Rights Respecting Schools Award and the department facilitates the Rights Respecting Group, which is run by pupils at the school.
How Parents Can Help
Your child’s progress in CPRE can be greatly helped if you take an active interest in the work they are doing, discussing with an open mind those areas which seek to develop their child’s own beliefs and opinions. It is important that parents encourage their children to think more deeply about the subject matter and develop their own views, while respectfully taking into account those of others. Parents can also help by supporting their child in their personal organisation and ability to meet deadlines.
CPRE seeks to develop informed individuals who can take responsibility for their own actions. We do not seek to make pupils follow any specific religious code or doctrine, although, as noted, we do emphasise Christianity and the accepted standards of British society throughout the course. We expect high standards of behaviour and that all pupils will strive to do their very best. Work is monitored against the pupil’s school target grade; those who achieve or surpass that level are praised, while those who underachieve are encouraged to do better. Pupils who do not meet these standards in the first instance are likely to be detained after school; if they continually do not meet the standard, their Head of Year will become involved. If no improvement is forthcoming, then the help of parents in enlisted.
If you have any queries or wish for further information about this curriculum area, please contact Adam Thomson (Head of CPRE).